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Console Server BREAK-Off Acknowledgments, Thank You's
version 2.0 (updated:Jul 18, 2006, 10:52 am )

(Questions about testing? email break-off at

Our testing could not have been done without significant help from vendors and users as well. This page is intended to recognize those folks and companies who have assisted us in our testing efforts.

The Conserver Application

  • Thomas A. Fine and Steven M.Romig; Ohio State University
    • Presented "A Console Server" at LISA IV, October 17-19, 1990
  • Kevin S Braunsdorf; Purdue University, Fed-Ex
    • Worked on a derivative version from the Ohio State Code
  • Robert Olsen; Argonne National Labs
    • Added the TCP hacks to talk to network-attached terminal servers
  • Arnold De Leon; Synopsys, Inc., Web-TV Networks, Microsoft
    • Deployed the code at Synopsys
    • Passed the torch to Bryan Stansell
  • Bryan Stansell; Synopsys, Inc., GNAC Inc., Certainty Solutions
    • Upgrades to the code
  • Dave Stuit; Certainty Solutions, TellMe
    • Debugging, testing
  • Todd Stansell; TellMe
    • Debugging, code enhancements
  • Stu May; Certainty Solutions
    • Documentation efforts
  • Cary Roberts and Tom Martins; TellMe
    • Help building the test lab, and knowledge sharing

Equipment Loans

When you work in a single network, you usually don't find much diversity, in terms of hardware, and you rarely have many spares devices at any given time. Even when you work in many networks, while the diversity of device vendors and models rises, the availability of spare equipment for testing doesn't rise much more.

The success of any study depends on the number of samples evaluated. Through the interest of the individuals listed below, and their efforts to arrange for the access to, or loan of, a terminal server (or a few), we were able to expand our test efforts, and test on a wider variety of hardware.

Hardware Donations

While the hardware loans allow me to perform my BREAK tests, some devices have been donated to the test effort. Having these devices for a longer period allows me more time to work with their features, and configure interoperability testbeds when questions arise. Even the older hardware is useful (providing that I can get the docs and software to make them run ;-).

Dean Flanders, of Novartis Research Foundation, was the first to donate equipment for our test corral. He sent us two different Xyplex models, and one PortMaster 2/E. Thanks Dean, and Novartis Research!

Charlie Fisher, during his tenure at Computone, Inc. arranged for a donation of a RAS 2000 chassis. He is now at Altura XL and has supplied a production version of the "rev B" boards for the RAS 2000. (Altura XL has bought the Computone RAS 2000 hardware line from Symbiat...)

Marcio Saito, and Daniel Kim of Cyclades have donated a TS-2000 for development testing of Conserver (imagine running Conserver inside your terminal server...), and a prototype ACS-1 for hacking with.

Cyclades also made a generous grant for console server equipment to the California Community Colocation Project, which has provided for two ACS-32 servers, and lots of serial adapters, plus backup gear, giving greater access for the volunteer system and network administration teams. (My development server is hosted there, and I volunteer my services to the CCCP Operations Team.)

George Hartzell & Justin Collins of for a pair or Xylogics Annex units.

Digi International for the donation of a CM-8 Console Server, and an RPM 8 power control device.

Digital Networks for the donation of a DECServer 90M+.

Sun Microsystems for the donation of a Netra T-1, for use in the BREAK-off testbed.

OpenGear for the donation of a CM4116.

James Lee, for the donation of an APC server rack, Smart UPS and external battery bay.

We have also begun working with other teams to test hardware that they cannot loan us. (We've restricted the testing so far to folks that we know personally, and who are not working for a terminal server equipment vendor.) Our thanks go to them for performing the testing to our specifications.

Jim Dumont; Synopsys, Inc.

Jeffrey Komori; ex-Synopsys, Inc., Savi, Inc.

Cary Roberts; TellMe Networks

Vendor Support

While we are trying to do our testing without 'special treatment' by vendors, we do like to provide some feedback to the vendors when we can. Many have been interested in our testing efforts, and have provided contacts for us to use. Some have also helped track down "legacy knowledge" about some popular, older devices. The working relationships with these individuals, I believe, has helped the user community at large, since we've been able to share this information with the user community, and the vendors are working to improve their products. My personal thanks go to the individuals listed below;

  • Bill Westfield and Phil Remaker; Cisco Systems
  • Brian and Connie Lloyd; Telebit Corp., Livingston, Lucent
  • Marcio Saito, Daniel Kim; Cyclades
  • Charlie Fischer, Kristin Riemers; Computone, Inc. (Now at Altura XL)

Some of my other contacts were not willing to have their names posted here. However, if you would like me to put you in touch with other vendors, you may email me with details, and I'll probably relay the message to my contacts.

Testing takes Time and Space

The Executive Staff at Certainty Solutions recognized the benefits of our testing, not only to their corporation, but also to the System and Network Administration communities at large. They provided space for our testing for three years in their data center, and continue to support my efforts to share the results in a public forum.

In the winter of 2004-2005, The testbed was expanded from one rack to three racks, in order to leave a number of the 'under-test' devices connected, as a way to facilitate quicker testing of theories and questions. This also allowed for the addition of extra clients and servers to the testbed mix, as well as the addition of remote power control.

Our Main BREAK-off Page:

BREAK Test Results:

BREAK Test methods:

BREAK Testing FAQ:

This page is

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