Technology Advancement #1
Large-Scale Network Discovery
It has been said that the first network management tool is a discovery tool. Indeed it is hard to find a network management software that doesn’t include discovery functionality, but the reality is still far from ideal. We still count on manual methods such as “show-commands” to figure out what you have. Network discovery, especially for large networks, has remained an unsolved problem.
NetBrain offers new technology that is now available to discover large and complex networks. It uses our unique neighbor-walking discovery logic, which emulates a human engineer. This algorithm utilizes known network devices as agents to efficiently walk through the entire network hop-by-hop. The results are:
All three NetBrain product lines include our powerful discovery engine. NetBrain Consultant Edition’s discovery engine is designed for portable network discovery, ideal for network consultants; NetBrain Enterprise Suite ’s discovery engine is best for enterprise discovery and re-discovery. The NetBrain Discovery Appliance is designed for network service providers.
Technology Advancement #2
Automate Network Diagramming
Most of us are still using the original 1st generation network diagramming tool – Microsoft Visio. While it is easy to use, the process is painstakingly slow and manual.
The 2nd generation tools such as Opnet NetMapper and SolarWinds LANsurveyor have introduced a network discovery component to enable automated creation of diagrams. However, these tools require can only support the diagramming of manually-defined areas and become static once created.
Recent advancements have resulted in the introduction of a 3rd generation tool from NetBrain based on Dynamic Network Diagrams. A dynamic network diagram is driven by an underlying data model, and can self-update when network changes occur. Diagram creation is automated based on simple inputs by users in real-time. What’s special is that the tool has the most powerful discovery application, its unique Dynamic Diagrams, and is still as easy, if not easier to use than Visio.
See some examples of dynamic network diagrams below:
Instant Network Diagram of L3 VoIP Path
Instant Network Diagram of L2 VoIP Path
Instant Network Diagram of Data Center after Discovery
Technology Advancement #3
Automate Assessment Documentation
Sample Pages of an Automated Network Assessment Document
Automated network documents are ideal for security compliance requirements, such as PCI, HIPPA and Sarbanes-Oxley compliance.
Technology Advancement #4
0 Touch Network Assessment
As a network expert, you are sometimes asked to audit a customer network with limited network access or no access at all– all you have is a set of configuration files or some show-command text.
NetBrain’s technology advancements have made this task much easier. Simply drag and drop configuration files into NetBrain to produce a network diagram instantly. Because this is a dynamic network diagram, you can execute many network assessment tasks right from the diagram, including generating inventory reports and design assessment documents.
With NetBrain, “show-command” results collected by other means can also be imported to perform deeper network analysis such as assessment of L2 network topology.
Technology Advancement #5
1-Click Inventory Report
With the investment made to purchase most network management tools, you would think that building a network inventory report would be simple. But in reality it’s not. If you need a list of devices inside one key data center, and would like to have the serial number and IOS version next to the device name and IP, most tools require writing a custom script.
Advanced technology from NetBrain makes tasks like this one, and even more complex ones, easy. After a controlled discovery of a data center, a full-inventory report is only one-click away. Available detail data includes:
Technology Advancement #6
Visual Performance Assessment and Capacity Planning
Are there hot spots in your network? Why are certain applications slow? Is the network VoIP ready?
A visual performance assessment tool like NetBrain can help answer these questions much easier than before. It starts with mapping out a network automatically with dynamic network diagrams. From within the dynamic network diagram, you can:
Launch HeatMap to detect performance hotspots
HeatMap allows network professionals to quickly discover over-utilized circuits and devices directly from the map. See an example below.
HeatMap Detects Over-utlized Links or Devices
- Launch IPSLA or IP accounting to analyze slow applications or network readiness for VoIP. See an example below.
The IPSLA Toolkit Measures and Assesses Network Readiness for VoIP
Technology Advancement #7
Automated Configuration and Design Assessment
When it comes to hard-core network security or readiness assessments, you will have to look into network configuration files – line by line for tens of thousands of lines. Technology has drastically reduced the difficulty of this process.
NetBrain’s patented design reader technology can help decode network design based on network configuration files, annotate design in a Dynamic Diagram, and even run batch analysis across multiple devices for multiple technologies. Network professionals can now spend a fraction of the time analyzing large network’s configuration.
Design Reader contains over 100 built-in design filters – a technology template used to analyze network design. Seasoned engineers are able to write their own design filters to decode any network design, any way they like.
Design Reader Dissect Complex Network Design