Power On-Off Regression Testing Initiated by TcL Script

Regression testing provides product development engineers with a reliable means for ensuring that hardware and software products can recover gracefully from a power interruption. In order to simplify the process of continually switching the test device on and off, user scripts (typically Bash scripts or TcL scripts) are employed to automate repetitive reboot testing.

using TcL scripts to drive repetitive power on-off cycle testing

During this type of repetitive power reboot test, a test device is continually powered off and on while a data collection device captures and status reports or error messages that are generated when the test device is rebooted. The status reports and error messages collected during a repetitive power reboot regression test can then be used by engineers to spot program bugs or hardware flaws that might otherwise go undetected.

In many cases, a repetitive power reboot test can go on for several months, during which, power might be cycled on and off hundreds of thousands of times. The duration of the repetitive power test, and the number of power on/off cycles involved make it impractical for this type of testing to be constantly supervised by a human operator. For this reason, most test labs rely on scripts to drive the power reboot process, thereby ensuring that power on/off cycles are continually performed at a regular cadence without the need for a constant human presence.

The most important factor in creating a successful repetitive power reboot test, is the presence of a switched PDU that can interpret and respond to TcL (“tickle”) scripts and other Bash shell scripts in order to automate the process. Obviously, if the switched PDU used in this type of test does not support TcL scripts or other bash shell scripts, then it will be impossible to effectively automate the test.

If you’re looking for a switched PDU that supports TcL scripts and other Bash shell scripts, WTI’s VMR-16HD20 series Outlet Metered PDU products can provide the perfect solution. In addition to supporting TcL and other Bash scripts, the VMR also includes true RMS per-outlet power metering, user-configurable event alarms and environmental alarms, automatic power shedding capabilities and other advanced features. The VMR is available with four, eight or sixteen outlets in both 120 VAC and 240 VAC configurations. A heavy duty, high amp VMR model is also available.

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