Network Security Testing Product Comparison

Things are much different than they were 10 years ago. In today’s world, Internet applications and network systems are growing increasingly complex. There are many more protocols, languages, features and capabilities than ever before, but not only this, the amount of traffic and data being pushed across the networks have increased tremendously.

As such, detecting vulnerabilities or network weaknesses can take much longer than in the past. More importantly, hackers or malicious software are utilizing a wider variety of methods that can cripple or even compromise a business’s integrity. In the past, such attacks have been utilized to bring down even the largest corporate applications and servers.

Beyond network attacks, other common problems in the IP and networking world, are server delays, server overload, application slow down, and traffic spikes.

No one is immune to these kind of network issues, but there are powerful solutions already hitting the market that can test and eliminate most network problems much earlier than previous technologies.

Any company specializing in the protection and security of network infrastructures knows that proper testing and network emulation is one of the best ways a business can prevent network outages and application failures. Almost all network issues can be prevented with the appropriate testing, know-how and equipment.

In this article we will be reviewing the two competing network testing companies, Ixia and Spirent and their respective products.

Ixia specializes in Converged IP Performance Testing with clients in over 30 countries including Network and Communication Corporations, Electronics Manufacturers, Governments, and Enterprises.

Spirent Communications is a British Telecommunications company dealing in communications and network testing.

We got our hands on a number of products from Ixia and Spirent, namely the IxChariot, IxLoad, Ix Test Conductor, and Spirent Avalanche.

IxChariot is known as the world’s foremost testing tool for simulating real-world applications to predict equipment and network performance under conditions that closely mimic the real world. It simulates hundreds of protocols and conditions on wired and wireless infrastructures

IxLoad is a testing solution for converged multiplay services and application delivery platforms.

Ixia Test Conductor is an automation framework for IP network testing teams. Because it’s easy to pick up, most technicians are up and running in no time. The Test Conductor system comes fully equipped with test authoring, resource management, regression, scheduling and trend analysis.

The Spirent Avalanche 3100 provides 10Gbps capacity, with performance and security testing for network infrastructure and web application services.

We tested each tool using optimal hardware and software conditions, and used the included manuals and support staff as necessary.

In summary, the products we tested from Ixia ran more reliably than Spirent’s comparably priced devices. In fact the prices from Ixia were significantly better than Spirent. When we had any questions or problems with the equipment we also found the support from Ixia to be much more robust. For example we didn’t have any problems getting a hold of a support representative, but when trying to get someone at Spirent to answer our questions, it was like pulling teeth.

In conclusion, network security companies thinking about switching from Spirent to Ixia will find they will not only increase their ROI, but work with more dependable equipment and support personnel. All this translates into less headaches for the server technicians, and a happier work environment. In our opinion, you can’t go wrong with Ixia, a brand trusted in over 30 countries.

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