Challenge | A comprehensive and effective advanced network monitoring service program in a modern enterprise data center involves complex and subtle understanding of the nature of Ethernet networks. Network engineers must be sensitive to issues of data security, application performance, and business requirements. To achieve 100% network visibility and direct the right data to the right tool, advanced monitoring switches offer features such as packet aggregation and filtering, packet slicing and de-duplication, data rate conversion and load balancing. These features are not widely understood, even among many networking professionals.
Solution: Intelligent Network Monitoring
In the standard network monitoring paradigm, each monitoring point in the network is associated with a specific analysis, intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, or recording tool. In many cases, there is no specifically assigned tool and a portable analyzer is moved between monitoring ports for temporary use.
Intelligent Network Monitoring (aka network packet broker) involves many advanced monitoring features developed to support 100% network visibility:
Packet aggregation is simply the merging of multiple data streams from SPANs and Taps, creating a single unified data stream that can be routed to a monitoring tool. APCON IntellaFlex blades support flexible any-to-any packet aggregation for increased monitoring tool efficiency.
Packet slicing and packet de-duplication are designed to clean up aggregated data streams and reduce the volume of data delivered to a given monitoring tool. In many cases only the packet header is analyzed, so packet slicing removes the packet payload, delivering only the required data. Packet de-duplication removes duplicate copies of packets that are generated by SPAN and Tap data sources. This feature can also be helpful for data security and compliance.
Time stamping enables network engineers to precisely measure network latency on a packet-by-packet basis. Latency-sensitive services such as high-speed stock trading, VoIP, and video streaming all require a network monitoring system that can accurately measure latency.
Data rate conversion, filtering, and load balancing allow you to monitor 10G links with less expensive 1G tools. By filtering out irrelevant packets, changing the data rate, and dividing a high-bandwidth data stream among several similar tools, equipment purchases may be delayed or eliminated.
Virtual network monitoring provides visibility of intra-VM (east-west) traffic on virtual servers using taps and filters to select traffic of interest. Learn more >