The company is a leading telecom equipment manufacturer.

Challenge

One of the company’s core products is a generic hardware and infrastructure server platform designed to host one or more telecom applications and provide reliable and scalable services. Unfortunately, the products had a number of prior software-related problems, which undermined their quality.

To address this, the company decided to overhaul the R&D for their switching and routing mechanisms, starting with a consolidation of the number of suppliers and production sites. 

Solution

The client came to Orion for this overhaul. Orion was already providing the customer with development and maintenance services, with a track record of being reliable partners. With the successful collaboration, the customer assigned Orion as an end-to-end partner for all the R&D activities.

Orion began by performing a complete knowledge transfer from the prior suppliers at short notice. In as little as two months, Orion concluded the knowledge transfer and took over full responsibility for the product design. Our team showed the client prompt and significant progress in terms of both product quality and new functionality, and then quickly embarked on an ambitious improvement program aimed at:

  • Architecture analysis and deployment of systemized technical improvements such as a single-thread SNMP handler;
  • Introduction of static analysis tools as part of the nightly build procedures;
  • Improvement of the test coverage and automated test cases stability, including the implementation of a Continuous Integration framework.

All of the above was done in parallel with the development of new features requested by the customer. As part of this project, Orion also implemented a VLAN translation feature that enables the product users to significantly reduce the time and complexity of the initial system configuration and its further adjustments.

Results

After six months of full product responsibility, the team accomplished the following:

  • Reduction of the total number of defects from 50+ to a single-digit backlog 
  • Stabilization of the test and CI environment: the number of successful CI runs has increased from under 50% to over 80% 
  • Reduced cost by improving R&D efficiency

Major Features:

  • Security updates for switching and routing components (ANSSI)
  • IPv4/32 & IPv6/128 route handling
  • VRRP tracking BFD, VRRP
  • Next-hops in a ECMP group
  • Ability to pre-configure port density using DHCP
  • BGP support in line with RFC 4271, RFC 4760 and RFC 3392
  • NET-SNMP single-thread handling
  • Excessive number of LSAs in OSPF DB (OSPF DB limits)

Technologies:

Backend:

  • C/C++
  • Java
  • Erlang

Network:

  • Broadcom StrataXGS NPU
  • IPv4/IPv6 stack
  • SNMP
  • NetConf
  • L2: 1G/10G/40G Ethernet, VLAN
  • L3+: OSPFv2/v3, BGP-4/BGP-4+
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