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Making Design and Performance Predictable in Production

by Barbara.Froemmel Jan 24, 2018

Making changes to the network is inherently risky. About half of all outages can be traced back to a network change as the root cause. Often this is because we’re reduced to “plug and pray” when making hardware upgrades or introducing new technologies. We don’t know what we don’t know.

I spoke with Move, Inc. at Cisco Live 2017 to learn how they used NetBrain to test and validate their design for migrating a data center to AWS. Todd Bristol, the principal design architect, explained that NetBrain’s ability to provide end-to-end visibility in a dev environment allowed his team to conduct deep network design analysis and understand failure events before technologies were deployed live in production.

Using NetBrain in a Cisco viral sandbox environment, Todd said, “We got to do all of our testing, we got to test all of our configurations, and we also got to see live when things would break. For example, I would break one circuit and see how the whole environment would change as a result of that circuit being down — not just ARP tables but routing tables and every parameter associated with the network after that change.”

Being able to test what-if scenarios in development gave him confidence in his design and meant that network performance would be far more predictable in production. Todd said he can’t get that from other tools. “If you’re using a network management tool that’s cloud based, how do you point that to dev without having to reconfigure the whole thing? It’s really difficult, and we didn’t have the capability to do that until NetBrain came along.”

NetBrain can integrate into existing change management workflows at each phase, minimizing human error and improving network uptime. And NetBrain offers a quick and easy way to troubleshoot new technologies that often introduce a whole new set of network challenges and complexities.

IT management and senior leaders should look at NetBrain as an investment, Bristol said. “We have one goal in mind: having our network up. We’re always looking for tools and methods to help us do that better and gather information that we normally couldn’t gather and NetBrain does that. The platform brings a lot of information to light that traditionally wouldn’t have been until other issues arise.”

Bristol also shared his quick-take on Integrated Edition 7.0, saying, “I’ll be honest, I drooled through most of the demo. Once I got maybe two minutes into it, my mind switched to ‘how fast can we get it?’”

Watch and listen to my entire conversation with Todd to hear more about what an experienced IT executive had to say about the power of NetBrain:

Move Inc. Interview with NetBrain at CLUS2017


See how other customers are using NetBrain in the Success Stories section of our video library.