Network Emulators Information


Network EmulatorsNetwork Emulators are designed to simulate the potential behaviors of computer networks. The main goal of a network emulator is to generate real-world traffic conditions, such as jitter and packet loss, and determine how a network will react under different situations. Network administrators can then determine possible problems before they occur in daily use. Emulators can be designed for different wireless, wired, satellite and cellular networks.


Emulator Types


Network emulators can be dedicated hardware devices or software running on a computer.


Software-based emulators typically run on a personal computer through a network card. These emulators are more adaptable than a dedicated hardware device. However, they may lack certain control and performance features since the hardware was not designed for emulation. Some software emulators are sold as hardware using specifically-built personal computers with emulation software installed.


Network EmulatorHardware-based emulators typically use circuits specifically built for emulation and allow better precision and control of the network traffic. While they are usually upgradable by firmware, some limitations of the fixed hardware cannot be changed and may eventually need to be replaced or upgraded over time.


Selection Considerations


Network emulators have various functions and capabilities. Latency, jitter, packet loss/error/reordering, bandwidth, and frame rate are among the attributes that can be tested.



Image Credit: 

Medladon | PacketStorm Communications, Inc.