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authorVratko Polak <vrpolak@cisco.com>2020-11-19 15:03:59 +0100
committerVratko Polak <vrpolak@cisco.com>2020-11-19 17:28:33 +0100
commit1c400d97109ef214aaa65583b0e64fc412e5ec57 (patch)
parente4c90c174831a97606a7fc78cdb12a63f5a132e1 (diff)
Methodology: DUT state considerations
Change-Id: I4bdb61cf665579c6b49d79c6fb281b4c0fb5ec89 Signed-off-by: Vratko Polak <vrpolak@cisco.com>
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+DUT state considerations
+This page discusses considerations for Device Under Test (DUT) state.
+DUTs such as VPP require configuration, to be provided before the aplication
+starts (via config files) or just after it starts (via API or CLI access).
+During operation DUTs gather various telemetry data, depending on configuration.
+This internal state handling is part of normal operation,
+so any performance impact is included in the test results.
+Accessing telemetry data is additional load on DUT,
+so we are not doing that in main trial measurements that affect results,
+but we include separate trials specifically for gathering runtime telemetry.
+But there is one kind of state that needs specific handling.
+This kind of DUT state is dynamically created based on incoming traffic,
+it affects how DUT handles the traffic, and (unlike telemetry counters)
+it has uneven impact on CPU load.
+Typical example is NAT where opening sessions takes more CPU than
+forwarding packet on existing sessions.
+We call DUT configurations with this kind of state "stateful",
+and configurations without them "stateless".
+(Even though stateless configurations contain state described in previous
+paragraphs, and some configuration items may have "stateful" in their name,
+such as stateful ACLs.)
+Stateful DUT configurations
+Typically, the level of CPU impact of traffic depends on DUT state.
+The first packets causing DUT state to change have higher impact,
+subsequent packets matching that state have lower impact.
+From performance point of view, this is similar to traffic phases
+for stateful protocols, see
+`NGFW draft <https://tools.ietf.org/html/draft-ietf-bmwg-ngfw-performance-05#section-4.3.4>`.
+In CSIT we borrow the terminology (even if it does not fit perfectly,
+see discussion below). Ramp-up traffic causes the state change,
+sustain traffic does not change the state.
+As the performance is different, each test has to choose which traffic
+it wants to test, and manipulate the DUT state to achieve the intended impact.
+Ramp-up trial
+Tests aiming at sustain performance need to make sure DUT state is created.
+We achieve this via a ramp-up trial, specific purpose of which
+is to create the state. Subsequent trials need no specific handling,
+as state remains the same.
+For the state to be set completely, it is important DUT (nor TG) loses
+no packets, we achieve this by setting the profile multiplier (TPS from now on)
+to low enough value.
+It is also important each state-affecting packet is sent.
+For size-limited traffic profile it is guaranteed by the size limit.
+For continuous traffic, we set a long enough duration (based on TPS).
+At the end of the ramp-up trial, we check telemetry to confirm
+the state has been created as expected.
+Test fails if the state is not complete.
+State Reset
+Tests aiming at ramp-up performance do not use ramp-up trial,
+and they need to reset the DUT state before each trial measurement.
+The way of resetting the state depends on test,
+usually an API call is used to partially de-configure
+the part that holds the state, and then re-configure it back.
+In CSIT we control the DUT state behavior via a test variable "resetter".
+If it is not set, DUT state is not reset.
+If it is set, each search algorithm (including MRR) will invoke it
+before all trial measurements (both main and telemetry ones).
+Any configuration keyword enabling a feature with DUT state
+will check whether a test variable for ramp-up (duration) is present.
+If it is present, resetter is not set.
+If it is not present, the keyword sets the apropriate resetter value.
+This logic makes sure either ramp-up or state reset are used.
+ TODO: Classify trials into main and telemetry, in a separate place.
+Notes: If both ramp-up and state reset were used, the DUT behavior
+would be identical to just reset, while test would take longer to execute.
+If neither were used, DUT will show different performance in subsequent trials,
+violating assumptions of search algorithms.
+DUT versus protocol ramp-up
+There are at least three different causes for bandwidth possibly increasing
+within a single measurement trial.
+The first is DUT switching from state modification phase to constant phase,
+it is the primary focus of this document.
+Using ramp-up traffic before main trials eliminates this cause
+for tests wishing to measure the performance of the next phase.
+Using size-limited profiles eliminates the next phase
+for tests wishing to measure performance of this phase.
+The second is protocol such as TCP ramping up their throughput to utilize
+the bandwidth available. This is the original meaning of "ramp up"
+in the NGFW draft (see above).
+In existing tests we are not distinguishing such phases,
+trial measurment reports the telemetry from the whole trial
+(e.g. throughput is time averaged value).
+The third is TCP increasing throughput due to retransmissions triggered by
+packet loss. In CSIT we currently try to avoid this behavior
+by using small enough data to transfer, so overlap of multiple transactions
+(primary cause of packet loss) is unlikely.
+But in MRR tests packet loss is still probable.
+Once again, we rely on using telemetry from the whole trial,
+resulting in time averaged throughput values.
+Stateless DUT configuratons
+These are simply configurations, which do not set any resetter value
+(even if ramp-up duration is not configured).
+Majority of existing tests are of this type, using continuous traffic profiles.
+In order to identify limits of Trex performance,
+we have added suites with stateless DUT configuration (VPP ip4base)
+subjected to size-limited ASTF traffic.
+The discovered throughputs serve as a basis of comparison
+for evaluating the results for stateful DUT configurations (VPP NAT44ed)
+subjected to the same traffic profiles.
+DUT versus TG state
+Traffic Generator profiles can be stateful (ASTF) or stateless (STL).
+DUT configuration can be stateful or stateless (with respect to packet traffic).
+In CSIT we currently use all four possible configurations:
+- Regular stateless VPP tests use stateless traffic profiles.
+- Stateless VPP configuration with stateful profile is used as a base for
+ comparison.
+- Some stateful DUT configurations (NAT44DET, NAT44ED unidirectional)
+ are tested using stateless traffic profiles.
+- The rest of stateful DUT configurations (NAT44ED bidirectional)
+ are tested using stateful traffic profiles.