ATM technology is now being deployed in operational networks. Most of the specifications required for operation have been developed. This includes signaling (UNI 4.0), routing (PNNI 1.0), traffic management (TM 4.0), numerous physical layer, network management, and testing specifications. As the technology moves from the laboratories to the field, the users have a need to benchmark and compare various ATM switches and other devices. The Devil's DP dictionary defines performance benchmarking as follows: Benchmark v. trans. To subject (a system) to a series of tests in order to obtain prearranged results not available on competitive systems. This definition is not very far from truth. In the absence of a performance testing standard, each vendor is free to use whatever metric the vendor chooses and to measure those in an arbitrary manner. This can lead to confusion among buyers and users of the technology and can hurt the technology. The authors have been involved in ATM Forum Test working groups since 1996 and this chapter is summary of their contributions to the Forum. These contributions have helped development of a set of standard ATM performance metrics and their measurement procedures.
Complete paper in Adobe Acrobat 3.0 Format (234,819 bytes)