Who is Power Systems Platform Test?
A platform or integration test is a validation of the POWER server in a valid end-to-end application solution including these key parts:
- Power systems hardware
- AIX and appropriate virtualization
- IBM Storage Hardware, Network Hardware, and SAN
- Relevant software and Middleware
All of these various elements and pieces must work together. No one runs just an operating system or a server, therefore we have to make sure it works with a multitude of other products and functions in a realistic use case, operated as a real customer would, with a focus on this usage and interaction. At IBM, product testing is and always has been extensive. In addition to the platform tests, we still peform these three "classical" test phases:
- Unit test
- Function test
- System test
The Power Systems platform test adds even more robustness to this quality lifecycle, emphasising the customer experience, cross-product dependances, and sensitivity to end users.
Our objective is to implement an end-to-end solution of IBM Power systems, Storage, SAN, and appropriate software components, in a manner that customers, might use it. That means doing much more than just ensuring that products work together — it means understanding what it takes to introduce, implement, and effectively use new products and functions in a full production environment while thousands of end users are expecting constant availability. In other words, we want to experience for ourselves the challenge of integrating various solutions into a business environment. And we want to experience it first, so we can hopefully save you some pain! We document the results of our testing (including any pain we've experienced and how you can avoid that pain) in our test reports. These provide examples that span multiple products that have been run in our production-like environment. We endeavor to provide you with the most stable Power systems platform we can.
Power systems platform test has organized its test environment and operations to be as customer-like as possible. Our team is organized in a way that many IT shops are, and our team members take on the roles of Power systems programmers, operators, database administrators, and so on. We focus on providing availability of applications to end users, and we pay attention to performance objectives and changes in performance as elements of the test environment are changed. We look at the recovery aspects and behavior of our systems from an end user's perspective. Our goal, like yours, is to have our workloads up 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (24 x 7). We have workloads that exercise the clustering, networking, SAN, storage, and application enablement characteristics of our configuration.