Abacus Path Assure


Abacus Path Assure Readiness Test

The single most practical way of troubleshooting today's voice and video IP networks is to avoid the trouble to begin with. VoIP and Video traffic is time sensitive and real time and cannot be queued like email, file transfers and web page delivery.

Is your network able to support the real time impact of voice over IP, high definition video conferencing, real time presence status and mobility solutions? Specialized real time VoIP/Video performance management is an essential requirement from pre-deployment design to planning to implementation to continuous 7x24x365 monitoring.

A clean data path is critical to providing a high quality VoIP and Video user experience.


Characteristics of Unified Communications

Unified communications combine performance sensitive applications such as telephony, unified messaging, mobile communications, high definition video conferencing and real time presence onto a common IP network. Real time communications applications are heavily impacted by bandwidth availability, latency, packet loss and jitter. Even minor performance issues can degrade the user experience. However, mean opinion scores (MOS), latency and packet loss measurements are just one component in understanding what makes a high quality experience for users. Active network monitoring that continuously analyzes each hop along the delivery path is just as important.  

Four Styles of Network Readiness Testing – How to Understand What You Get

1)     Physical site survey is a manual inventory and bandwidth estimation. Either your network equipment is properly configured, and you have enough bandwidth to support your maximum number of concurrent calls, or you don’t.
2)     Feasibility study is a one time snapshot of your network indicating red light / green light health of the devices and simulated VoIP stress testing that generates synthetic VoIP packets and attempts to overload the network
3)     True voice testing generates real voice calls (RTP and RTCP SIP packets) without deploying IP phones or any other VoIP gear. Voice tests have all the payload and characteristics of real voice calls and are the most accurate way to stress the network by simulating real voice traffic on a path via Layer 4 protocols that put greater loads on the network.
4)     Post deployment, on demand testing is the ability to rerun readiness simulations whenever you deploy new network resources - versus a one time snapshot in time.

Two Distinctions with a Path Centric Approach

1)     Abacus Path Assure is a non-invasive path centric approach that tests the network end to end along the path used by the application. A device centric approach looks at the behavior of the device (is it healthy, is the CPU OK, is the memory OK). If the quality issue is upstream of the WAN router and the device’s behavior checks out (no dropped or out of order packets) a device centric approach would not provide alerts or diagnostic information for further troubleshooting. Path Assure provides a readiness value that is an aggregate assessment of all factors across each hop on a network path and provides full mesh end to end visibility across remote sites, distributed users, cloud and internet service providers.
2)     Abacus Path Assure is a lightweight active IP end to end continuous performance monitoring and remote assessment across the LAN/WAN. It is not a one time snapshot of your network traffic or a timed stress test that lasts 1-2 weeks on specific sites. Abacus Path Assure lets you run reassessments on your entire network any time prior to deploying new applications, or adding new sites, or resources to your network --- all year long.


Micro or 1U rack appliances plug into any open LAN port on the network, require zero administration and self register back to the cloud. No permissions, login credentials or authorizations for any of the devices or end points to be monitored need to be collected. No configuration of spanned ports, mirroring, port forwarding or access to secure areas is needed. Path Assure automatically identifies LAN/WAN targets to be monitored.
Path Assure can be deployed as a public or private cloud service with no need to purchase, provision, maintain or upgrade any software. Each Linux based micro or rack-appliance can monitor hundreds of network paths in real time.