SOURCE: BreakingPoint


June 16, 2009 10:30 ET

BreakingPoint Publishes Server Load Balancer Testing Methodology

Methodology Provides In-Depth Guideline for Realistic Performance and Security Testing of Server Load Balancers

AUSTIN, TX--(Marketwire - June 16, 2009) - BreakingPoint today released the industry's most realistic and comprehensive server load balancer testing methodology. BreakingPoint's test methodology provides Network Equipment Manufacturers (NEMs) and service providers with a hands-on guide to realistically test the performance and security of server load balancers while reducing their time-to-test. Download the Server Load Balancer Testing Methodology at

Server Load Balancers Are Critical to the Overall Network Infrastructure

Server load balancers have become an integral piece of networking equipment, allowing for load balancing, application acceleration and high availability of services. Adoption of virtualization and cloud computing, as well as the overall increase of network load, has placed server load balancers in a critical juncture of any network infrastructure. Testing of these network-critical devices must be improved from the legacy methodologies currently in circulation and shift towards testing with realistic network emulation.

Server Load Balancers Require Realistic Testing that Match Deployment Scenarios

Server load balancers run on Layer 4-7 in front of a server farm, listening for a request for a service, forwarding the request to an available server and after receiving a response, replies to the client whom made the initial request. A realistic server load balancer test:

-- Needs to move beyond traditional testing tools simply pushing through HTTP-only traffic.

-- Must emulate blended application traffic to simulate a true network including HTTP, HTTPs, IMAP, FTP and more.

-- Provide realistic throughput speeds in order to determine overall performance and security.

Enhancing the Realism of Server Load Balancer Testing While Reducing Time to Test

The BreakingPoint Server Load Balancer Testing Methodology demonstrates how to configure a load balancer and set up the testing tools. Testing procedures include:

--  Testing the number of TCP connections per second the load balancer is
    able to handle provides a baseline test of the device's performance
--  Emulating blended Layer 4-7 application traffic in order to validate
    that the load balancer can handle a true network scenario.
--  Determining the overall bandwidth the load balancer can support
    through testing the number of HTTP/HTTPs connections per second the device
    can handle.
--  Simulating dynamic pages and image files to validate HTTP Caching
    performance and confirm the load balancer is locally caching needed files.
--  Confirming the load balancer can handle malformed packets or errors
    with the packet through application fuzzing.
--  Testing RFCs 793, 1945, 2616, 2818, and 3501.

Download the Server Load Balancer Testing Methodology at

BreakingPoint CTO and co-founder, Dennis Cox

"Server load balancers are so important to today's network infrastructure, helping to provide improved service uptime, redundancy and better application performance. In order to make this happen server load balancers must have a high level of awareness of application protocols traversing the network, provide local caching and handle a significant amount of simultaneous TCP connections. Now add onto this the influx of virtualization, and today's server load balancers have become highly complex content-aware devices that help to optimize your network and the applications it is running. Yet traditional testing methodologies, which only call for testing with HTTP traffic, are still being used. Simply testing server load balancers with HTTP is unsuitable and irresponsible. True performance and security testing requires realistic and blended application traffic, appropriate throughput and even anomalies such as application fuzzing. The more realistic testing you do today, the better performing and more secure server load balancer you'll see tomorrow."

About BreakingPoint Elite

Using BreakingPoint Elite to perform server load balancer testing, Network Equipment Manufacturers (NEMs) and service providers will see more accurate performance and security results, as well as reduce their time-to-test and accelerate the development and deployment of the devices. BreakingPoint Elite is the only testing tool in the industry to provide:

--  The ability to natively generate blended application traffic from more
    than 75 stateful application protocols including HTTP, SMTP, AOL®
    IM, FIX, IBM DB2, VMware® VMotion™, Microsoft® CIFS/SMB, MAPI,
    Oracle, Encrypted BitTorrent™, eDonkey, RADIUS, SIP, Windows Live
    Messenger, World of Warcraft®, Yahoo!® Messenger and many more.
--  More than 4,200 live security strikes for testing, SSL testing, DdoS
    emulation, comprehensive Microsoft® Tuesday coverage, SYN flood
    attacks with up to 1 Million connections per second and more than 80
    evasion techniques.
--  Unprecedented performance in one 10GigE blade:
      - 15 million simultaneous TCP sessions
      - 1.5 million TCP sessions per second
      - 20 Gigabits per second of blended Layer 4-7 traffic
      - 40 Gigabits per second of Layer 2-3 traffic

About BreakingPoint

BreakingPoint accelerates the development and testing of high-performance content-aware network equipment with fast, accurate, responsive, and easy-to-use application, performance and security testing tools. BreakingPoint is headquartered in Austin, Texas, with offices and customers in Canada, China, Finland, France, Germany, India, Israel, Italy, United States and the United Kingdom. For more information visit

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