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Lights out, testing on. How test automation keeps WFH teams productive.

2021-03-19  |  4 min read 

Over the past few months, we have learned the new way of life. Although I am personally in favor of getting a team together in a room to brainstorm a solution to a problem, I was surprised to see the productivity achieved even without a single trip to work and/or customer sites. In a way, we have automated all work tools to keep us sprinting forward in these dire times. Imagine what would have happened if we did not have smartphones and apps to order grocery, fast food, and services during the pandemic days.

On hindsight, this is not new. Our experience working with the networking ecosystem right from ASICs, to NEMs to hyperscalers exposed us to this for years. Software defined networking (SDN) is a classic example of this trend. The move to disaggregation has commoditized networking components. Abstracting hardware from software has been a key for faster pace of software development, leading to more innovation in networking. One of the enablers for fast paced, agile development is continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD). An integral step for a CI/CD pipeline to be successful is continuous test.

At Keysight, luckily, we always find ourselves at the bleeding edge of technology. Working with the titans of the networking industry as part of the Network Application and Security (NAS) division of Keysight, we have incorporated automation as an integral part of all our test products. Today’s data center is enabled to work in a lights-out environment. With limited access to facilities, it has become more critical. Testing that infrastructure needs the same. Hence, over the years we have enabled all our test tools with modern automation like REST API to integrate to such an environment. With Python as the most popular choice of programming language, we also provide python wrappers for easy automation.

DevOps enablers like Jenkins, Git, and array of other tools can then integrate to all Keysight NAS tools to facilitate CI/CT/CD. The entire flow begins with the user pushing in new code changes for his application he is testing as part of CI, it then goes into the pipeline test stages, and ultimately produces a software lifecycle of continuous delivery. It is not only important to have the right test tools for doing the job, but to consider how those tools can fit into your CI/CT/CD pipeline. To know more about how Keysight tools can help you overcome the challenge, check out these resources for further reading:

Network Test Automation

Ensure Effective Continuous Testing in DevOps

Test Automation Trends to Stay Ahead of the CI/CT/CD Cycle