Using Scripts to Control a Switched PDU

In addition to providing an effective means to reboot remote devices in network management applications, Switched PDUs can also perform many useful functions in product development lab applications. One of the most common tasks assigned to a switched PDU in the product development lab, is to provide power on/off switching for repetitive power reboot regression testing. Given the long duration of a typical power reboot test and the number of reboot cycles involved, it can be extremely helpful to control the switched PDU using scripts.

When a switched PDU product supports control via script, this allows test engineers to write short scripts that can be used to control power on-off and reboot switching without the need for a constant human presence to control the test process. Control of the test procedure via script also helps to improve test results by ensuring that each reboot cycle is performed according to schedule, and that the test will proceed uninterrupted, 24 hours a day until completion.

The key factor in automating a repetitive power reboot regression test, is the presence of a switched PDU product that supports control by various common scripts. The switched PDU should be able to execute power switching and reboot operations in response to scripts received via console port or Ethernet and should also be able to display unit status in response to script. A wide variety of different scripts are typically used in automated repetitive power reboot testing, but the most commonly encountered are probably Bash Shell Script, Linux Shell Script, Perl Script, Procomm Script, Python Script, Ruby Script TcL (or “tickle”) script, TeraTerm Script and Visual Basic.

All WTI Switched PDU products provide full support for all of the scripts listed above, and also include a variety of other features that can be very useful in a test environment. For example, the monitoring and alarm functions provided by WTI Switched PDUs allow test engineers to keep better track of conditions and events within the test environment, and can provide immediate notification when high temperatures, unresponsive devices and other relevant conditions are detected. WTI Switched PDU products also include a formidable assortment of security and authentication features to ensure that access to power control functions is safely protected, plus encryption features to protect communication with the switch from unauthorized access.

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