The University of New Hampshire InterOperability Lab (UNH-IOL), which has made a name for itself offering test, certification, and standards conformance/interop resources to organizations and vendors (see, for example, "OIF, UNH-IOL partner for Optical Control Plane UNI certification"), says it now will make its BitPhyer Test Tools available to the public. The test resources are particularly useful for test of Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet, and automotive Ethernet – areas UNH-IOL describes as "the lower, typically/previously untestable physical layers" of Ethernet.
The BitPhyer family of hardware platforms can test IEEE 802.3 MAC, Flow Control, PCS, and RS layers. The use of Xilinx FPGAs and custom-built hardware make BitPhyer a flexible bit-level based test system that can grow beyond the Gigabit Media-Independent Interface and Media-Independent Interface (GMII/MII)-based system, says the lab. The platform offers bit-level control that enables the test of what UNH-IOL called "test hard-to-reach portions of the standard," such as Clause 49 PCS state diagrams and block encoding/decoding.
Use of BitPhyer can enable faster root cause analysis, decrease testing time for validation, and lower costs, asserts UNH-IOL.
"Due to market shifts and recent developments (industrial, automotive, etc.), new adopters in the Ethernet space are continuously emerging," said Jeff Lapak, associate director, UNH-IOL. "The BitPhyer platform is designed to grow with those shifts. Being able to test both existing product and products under development, companies can cut down on unnecessary revisions of silicon by getting it right the first time."
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