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Midnight Releases Avalanche/Web Testing Tool

Midnight Networks (Waltham, MA) released Avalanche/Web, a Web testing unit with very high performance, capable of emulating thousands of clients simultaneously.

It produces what the vendor calls a "realistic emulation of the Internet," enabling ISPs, server vendors and telcos to test the Internet performance of their HTTP/FTP servers and services.

"The Avalanche/Web product will be popular with providers who offer web server hosting services," said Eric Zines, VPN Analyst with TeleChoice. "Understanding the performance characteristics of web servers in real-life circumstances will allow service providers to scale their offerings to match customer needs. Without benchmarking and testing, there is no accurate way to do this. Also, this type of benchmarking will allow them to design Service Level Agreements for web hosting services, and offer these SLAs with confidence."

The key feature of Avalanche/Web is its ability to emulate 1500 clients with multiple IP addresses from each hardware unit. Systems may be linked together to provide many more clients. Avalanche/Web can determine how many "hits" a web site can take in a day, hour, minute or second. By stress testing a site it can also determine the robustness of the web or FTP server which is hosting it.

A preliminary version of Avalanche/Web is now available, a base system consisting of a 200 MHz Intel Pentium-based platform with two 10/100 Mb Ethernet ports and the vendor's proprietary performance and stress testing software. The price of a base system is $39,995.