NextGig Systems, Inc. - Network Connectivity & Test Solutions

Network Emulation, Delay Simulation, Bandwidth Emulator & WAN Simulation

VirtualSAN™ - 1x/2x/4x/8x Fibre Channel SAN Emulator


VirtualSAN is a high-performance Fibre Channel SAN Emulator that replicates real world network effects such as latency and errors on user traffic in a controlled environment. The VirtualSAN emulator uses customized ICs to support full line rate performance at all frame sizes and impairment settings. The emulator can be transparently installed in-line as shown in the diagram below. VirtualSAN emulator has an intuitive and easy to use GUI interface and a very powerful TCL based CLI to aid in configuration and testing.

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•Targeted Impairment

•Impairment Duration/Burst

•Frame Drop

•Data Corruption

•Data Modification

•CRC Errors

•CRC Correction

•Layer1 Bit Errors

•Layer1 Output Bit Rotation

•Output (Laser) Disable



Full line rate (20Gbps) regardless of the incoming frame sizes, number of impairments, or the specified parameters for impairments. This is very important to run directed test-cases which create same exact impairment behavior every time. This ability is very critical when trying to address complex system interactions which are hard to reproduce.

Dynamic Latency Changes

VirtualSAN smoothly changes the configured delay in a hit-less manner (without injecting spurious frames or dropping frames, introducing Running Disparity/Code Word errors or causing Link Initialization events). Since Fibre Channel is designed to be run over a loss-less medium, this capability is necessary for preventing DUT OS-Crashes/File-System Errors when changing test configurations.

Transparent Installation

Built-in traffic filter selectively sends user specified DUT traffic for testing while bypassing all other traffic without delay or other impairments. This traffic filter eliminates the need for a separate test-bed and enables in-line installations where normal (production) and DUT network traffic are co-mingled.

Ease of Use

VirtualSAN emulator has an intuitive and easy to use GUI interface and a very powerful TCL based CLI to aid in configuration and testing. Due to it's execution speed TCL provides much finer time control to run complex test scenarios.

Port Density

Simultaneous operation on Four FC1x/2x/4x ports and Two FC8x is supported by single VirtualSAN chassis.

Real Time Statistics

Real time statistics for L1/L2 Errors, Interface Traffic and all random/target Impairments are available on GUI/TCL interface. Beyond that all stats can be logged to a CSV file for post-analysis.

Protocol Parsing

Highly flexible protocol parser engine is key to the ease of use. This ability eliminates the need to calculate Layer 2 offsets for all the supported protocol fields. Additionally if user has a requirement for a specific protocol/field than that can be added onto supported protocols as well. Included protocols: FC header, Optional Headers, Custom

Target Impairments

Random testing alone is not sufficient for the root cause analysis . Ability to target specific frames for impairments is a key to validating product performance and optimization. VirtualSAN emulator is equipped with enhanced ability to target a specific frame. Various field comparison (=, ?, =, =, Range, Out of Range) results can be combined together using AND/OR terms.

Impairment Duration

Impairments can be specified as having infinite as well as finite duration in units of Time, Frames, and Bytes.

Impairment Burst

Impairment burst allows user to control number of impaired frames every time a frame is selected for impairment. Overall impairment rate will be user configured rate.

Frame Drop

VirtualSAN emulator supports drop rate from 1E-7% (1E-9) to 100% on random/targeted frames. Supported distributions are Uniform, Periodic and Bursty. Bursty distribution maintains average drop rate but allows for peak drop rate as well to emulate congestion.

Data Corruption

VirtualSAN emulator supports data corruption rate of 1E-2 to 1E-12. Data corruption can be applied on complete frame or partial frame. Partial frame can be selected using easy to use protocol and field drop downs to identify the start and the end corruption locations. VirtualSAN emulator can correct FC checksum based on user selection.

Data Modification

VirtualSAN emulator has 2 modification engines each capable of modifying 128 Bytes (total 256 bytes). Easy to use protocol and field drop downs allow user to select protocol field to be modified. Modification value can be PRBS, Invert or user entered value. User can also use mask to modify only partial field. VirtualSAN emulator can correct FC checksum based on user selection.

CRC Errors

VirtualSAN emulator allows user to corrupt FC checksum for random/targeted frames.


VirtualSAN Emulator supports delay from FC8x - 5us to 275ms, (+/-)4.7 ns, FC4x - 10us to 550ms, (+/-)9.4 ns FC2x - 20us to 550ms, (+/-)18.8 ns, FC1x - 40us to 550ms, (+/-)37.6 ns. User can specify fixed/variable delay distribution. In variable distribution user can enter min and max delay values. User can also specify Private, Managed and Shared WAN network profiles for variable delay distribution.

Layer1 Bit Errors

Layer1 bit errors create lossy link behavior. Bit errors are introduced just before data goes on the wire. User can specify rate from 1E-2 to 1E-12. User can also specify the burst length from 1 to 32767 bits.

Layer1 Output Bit Rotation

40 output bit-rotation options to exercise all possible Comma alignment taps. This enables users to stress their custom implementation of physical layer framers or off the shelf SERDES chip sets.

Output (Laser) Disable

Unique control allows user to emulate plugging/unplugging of fiber or temporary loss of service without physically doing it. User can precisely control the laser off time. Time range is from 20 ms to 30 sec or infinite.