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FRONTLINE DEBUTS CUSTOM PROTOCOL DECODING CAPABILITY.

Frontline Test Equipment, Inc., Charlottesville. Va., a leader in portable, affordable PC-based Datacom test equipment, has introduced the FTS (Frontline Test System) ProDecoder Framework for the development of custom decoders for data communication protocols. The ProDecoder Framework will allow protocol troubleshooters to decode their custom protocols, saving valuable time when analyzing proprietary protocols.

FTS ProDecoder can be used with Frontline's protocol analyzers Serialtest(R) (serial data analyzer) and Ethertest(R) (Ethernet LAN analyzer). It can also be used with files captured by other protocol analyzers or any data capture product that supports industry standard file formats (i.e. Snoop).

No special tools are required to use the FTS ProDecoder Framework, all you need is a standard text editor such as Notepad. The ProDecoder Framework Tool Kit includes a set of sample decoders, supporting DLLs, and user documentation. Either you can write the decoder yourself or you can contract with Frontline to have their custom decode service write the decoder for you.

You can develop decodes for public use or encrypted for private use. If you have a protocol that is very proprietary, you can purchase an advanced version of ProDecoder that supports encryption and complex protocols.

"The FTS ProDecoder takes protocol decoding to a new level, making it quite easy to decode proprietary protocols," states Eric Kaplan, president of Frontline. "Now any protocol troubleshooter that owns a protocol analyzer or data capture device, not just our Frontline products, can write custom protocol decoders and save valuable time analyzing their data."

Markets Served by FTS ProDecoder Framework:

Anyone troubleshooting proprietary protocols will find the FTS ProDecoder useful. Markets typically served by FTS ProDecoder are:

-- Software developers that debug their data communications software;

-- Network troubleshooters that analyze proprietary protocols;

-- Wireless Radio Networks used by police and fire agencies use proprietary protocols;

-- Industrial Automation and Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs) for controlling robotics and sensors all use proprietary protocols;

-- Utility companies use proprietary protocols when communicating with their Remote Terminal Units (RTUs) for measuring energy usage and levels;

-- Other non-computer equipment manufacturers utilize proprietary protocols with their equipment, including ATM machines, gas pumps, Point of Sale (POS) Systems, and credit card processing to name a few.

Pricing and Availability

The FTS ProDecoder Tool Kit is free; purchase as many FTS ProDecoder Viewers as you require. Viewers can be purchased as add-ons to Frontline's Serialtest and Ethertest products or stand-alone to be used with 3rd party protocol analyzers and data capture software. FTS ProDecoder Viewers cost as little as $300.00, contact Frontline for pricing.

FTS ProDecoder will be available for shipment on March 1, 2000.

More About Frontline Test System (FTS) Software

FTS is the software that is used for all the Frontline 32-bit data communication testing tools. Its modular design allows the same graphical user interface (GUI), protocol decodes, and data processing engine to be used across all FTS products. Currently available are: Serialtest Async and Serialtest Spy for Windows 95/98/NT (async serial data and protocol analyzers), Serialtest ComProbe(R) for Win 95/98/NT (a sync and async serial data and protocol analyzer), and SerialBERT(R) for Windows 95/98/NT (Bit Error Rate Tester.) We plan to release Ethertest(R) (Ethernet LAN analyzer) in the second quarter, 2000. When Ethertest is released, the data communications troubleshooter will now only have to learn one user interface to do serial data analysis, Ethernet analysis, and Bit Error Rate Testing. There are no other PC-based, low cost products on the market that will afford the datacomm troubleshooter these capabilities.

More about Frontline Test Equipment:

Frontline Test Equipment, Inc. (FTE), founded in 1991, provides highly portable, cost-effective data communication test tools to the computer and communications industries. FTE is headquartered in Charlottesville, Virginia, with a sales and support office in Vienna, Austria. The company distributes products worldwide, with customers including a wide variety of organizations such as AT&T, Sprint, Southwestern Bell, Bell Atlantic, Amoco, General Electric, Allen Bradley, Department of Defense, Burlington Northern Railroad, VISA, 3COM, and America OnLine (AOL). There are over 20,000 Frontline products installed worldwide.

For more information, call (804)984-4500 or visit http://www.fte.com .
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Title Annotation:Frontline Test Equipment's FTS ProDecoder data communications testing equipment
Publication:Computer Protocols
Article Type:Product Announcement
Date:Mar 1, 2000
Words:689
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