ABot 4G/5G Network Function and Deployment Validation Service
ABot is a test automation tool for 4G/5G telecom networks that follows 3GPP specifications and other standards like SIP, MQTT, etc. It emulates telecom interfaces and nodes for wrap-around testing of network functions (NF), which can be PNF, VNF or CNF.
Service operators can use ABot’s canned end-to-end call flows to validate 4G/5G and CIoT scenarios during system integration and interop testing prior to deployment in a production network. ABot is capable of simulating and validating any 4G/5G protocol like S1AP, NAS, NGAP, GTPv1u, GTPv1c, Diameter, SIP, RTP, Rest, PFCP and HTTPv2. Apart from functional verification, ABot is capable of testing the robustness of a telecom node, its capacity and performance by simulating Gbps level traffic with millions of simulated devices. ABot being a cloud-native test tool, it seamlessly integrates with any cloud orchestrator like Juju, Cloudify, ONAP, Kubernetes, etc.
ABot is a test tool for unit testing, development testing, system integration and interoperability testing. It is capable of simulating any 4G or 5G telecom function completely or only certain interfaces/messages. Thus, ABot is capable of testing even a partially implemented telecom node. It’s ability to simulate end-to-end 5G Non-standalone and Standalone use cases can accelerate development, integration and interoperability testing of NFs. The simulated protocols are encapsulated easily in ABot framework and are used to forward traffic via 3gpp/LTE data path. ABot Analytics provides data insights using AI-driven ML mechanisms to help troubleshoot and determine Root Cause Analysis. All this makes ABot an ideal test tool for any mobility OEM.
ABot is cloud platform agnostic and its 4G/5G protocol stacks are containerized to meet the need of multi-cloud decentralized deployment configuration of NFs. It’s infrastructure components like GUI, test execution engine, analytics module, etc. can be deployed as micro-services and integrated with other orchestration functions and CI/CD engine. The containerized emulated stacks of ABot can be deployed on Edge networks of both Telco and Cloud Operators network. These stacks can be deployed as Work Loads in Pods across the network and Orchestrated to simulate any topology.
ABot binaries can be installated on VMs or as containerized micro services on any hypervisors. The test environment can be configured using ABot’s Config UI option. After these two simple steps, one can start executing pre-packaged ABot test cases (feature files) using the GUI or from a CI/CD engine.
The test cases of ABot are mapped to 3GPP Specifications and it covers end-to-end 4G/5G/CIoT call flows.
The high-level classification of test cases is given below –
ABot can be licensed as TaaS in various VM and Cloud configurations. A purchased license of ABot includes the complete test suite for the solution purchased and a full-featured ABot Test Tool along with ABot Analytics. The technical support in a commercial engagement consists of –
- Helping customer execute the canned test cases
- Giving fixes for any issues encountered
- Training for authoring new test cases
- Customizing test cases to match customer requirement for a limited period.
Beyond the initial support window, a separate service engagement contract will provide on-going test case authoring, support and customization.
All test execution data are maintained in the ABot Artefact folder of the GUI and can be viewed from various angles, e.g. vendor node, test environment identification, etc. A ladder diagram representation of the call flow is provided along with associated PCAP and log files sorted in by node interface on the diagram. Execution time for each test step, nodes and interfaces covered and the node configuration are also made available in the Artefact UI. For failed test cases, failure analysis with details on the failed step are also provided
The Analytics and Maturity tab of the ABot UI presents a deeper analysis of the execution data via an interactive dashboard. Following are a few of the salient insights included in ABot Analytic report:
- Pass/Fail statistics of the Feature Files (test cases) executed
- Failure analysis for the feature file; test authoring error, configuration error or application failure
- Nodes, Protocols and Interfaces covered and their associated configuration
- 3GPP Procedures and Scenario covered by the execution data and its maturity statistics
- System-level KPIs presented graphically
- Story-board representation of test cases executed
- Build-by build Maturity and Trend analysis broken down by Interfaces, Protocols, Mobility characteristic and the Nodes tested.