APRIL 29, 2008 By Meghan Fuller Hanna -- Ixia (search for Ixia) has test equipment designed to measure such traditional performance parameters as throughput, latency, and jitter. Now, the company will be able to measure a device's 'greenness quotient' as well, thanks to a proof-of-concept test platform it will introduce this week at Interop 2008.
Dubbed IxGreen, the new test platform measures the amount of power required to run at a given performance level. "We're not just looking at basic power," explains Vic Alston, senior vice president of product development at Ixia. "We're really looking at 'What is the power required to transmit video, voice, and data? What is the power to run at 100% of line rate or 80% of line rate? What is the actual power consumed at various real-world load ratios?'" he muses.
Alston confirms that many of Ixia's equipment manufacturer and enterprise customers are interested in power relative to the data center environment. "Somewhere around the order of $50 billion is spent just on power and cooling within the data center worldwide," he says, "and anything they can do to save dollars there will really help their bottom line and increase their margins. A lot of our customers--especially equipment manufacturers--are starting to say, 'How can we differentiate in the area of power consumption so we can reduce overall total cost of ownership?'" he reports.
IxGreen provides a power quotient or greenness score, similar in concept to the mean opinion scores (MOS) Ixia provides for voice and video services.
At Interop 2008 this week in Las Vegas, Ixia will offer a live demonstration of the basic IxGreen infrastructure; both the hardware and the software needed to run the device are ready now. But the company still has some "tweaking" to do before it rolls out the full-fledged product later this year, Alston admits.
"What we're fine-tuning in partnership with our customers is the software and the metrics that would identify the 'greenness factor,'" he says. "The key idea here is that Ixia is not providing the metric by itself. Ixia is providing the technology, but we're leveraging industry-relevant metrics from institutes like The Green Grid," he confirms. "We've been working with a few customers, and we want to continue to do that until we roll out the ideal solution."
Alston says Ixia will use Cisco and Nortel devices in its Interop demonstration.
Learn more about the test and measurement industry at Lightwave's Test & Measurement Resource Center.