Proverbs and reality
An old proverb says "Trust, but check!" This saying applies today more than ever... just look around and you will see why.
Computer infrastructure is notorious for being a complete mess, even if we think that everything is in perfect order. And if someone tells you otherwise, they are either very happy in their ignorance ( 'ignorance is a bliss!' ) or just hide something from you. ( 'not everything is gold, what shines...').
In application to our specialities, the carrier and service provider network infrastructure and services, we can say the same. Let me ask you couple questions...
Do you always believe in your vendor promises?
Do you trust in new equipment and new software releases?
Do you expect that all features work as advertised?
If you answered "Yes" to any of these questions, stop reading. You are very happy person now! :-) Do not spoil it!
If you answered "No" to all of them, then you know better from your experience that quite often the new software can break down the equipment it was just installed on, or melt the network core down after the new software image or feature was introduced into the live production network environment...
This is why all Tier-1 and Tier-2 Service Providers have rigorous Type Approval Testing procedures. We are very familiar with this process and already provided some of the 'big guys' with our services in this discreet area.
We conduct rigorous tests for you in order to verify compliance of the new equipment and software to the standards, interop with other equipment, we test the upgrade and downgrade procedures, verify scalability and performance, perform functional testing, etc.
We have our own test plans or we can execute your custom test plans too. When the 'grilling' is done, we will provide you with hundreds of pages of detailed high-quality reports about the testing and will summarize our findings.
Quality is never a compromise and our approval is a guarantee of a seamless upgrades and trouble-free operations in the months to come.
It is good to trust your vendor, but we also recommend to check on them from time-to-time.Trust, but check!