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Network Operations Tool Selection Checklist

Product Comparison
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Network Monitoring

Device reachability monitoring Monitor all devices to ensure that they are operational and reachable
Device latency monitoring Track latency of communications traffic to/from every network device
Device loss monitoring Monitor packet loss during communications between all network devices
Device jitter monitoring Track jitter to/from every network device
Device uptime reporting Report on device reachability and uptime stats
Routing table entry alerting Track changes/adds/deletions of routes on routers and can trigger alerts
Device backplane utilization reporting Track overall backplane utilization for the device
Interface up/down status monitoring Monitor critical infrastructure interfaces to make sure they are operational
Interface utilization monitoring Monitor infrastructure interfaces to make sure they have adequate bandwidth
Network diagramming Provide a network diagram of all network devices and subnets and how they connect
Syslog server Accept and alert on syslog messages generated by network devices
SNMP trap receiver Accept and alert on received SNMP trap messages
Device configuration backups Automatically back up network device configurations on a set schedule
Device configuration change notices Send alerts out when network devices have their configuration changed, showing who changed the configuration and what was changed
Large scale device configuration Able to deploy configuration on multiple devices
Device configuration compare/diff capability Quickly determine the differences/changes between network device backups
Immediate backup Performs an immediate backup of a network device via the web UI
BGP neighbor monitoring Monitor status and reachability of BGP neighbors
Network device health monitoring Monitor the CPU of the device, along with the latency/jitter/loss to/from the device for stability tracking
PoE monitoring Tracks PoE usage of the switch as well as interfaces
STP monitoring Tracks Spanning-Tree Protocol for the switch as well as per interface
Device inventory Tracks each component's manufacturer, model, serial number, OS version as well as serial numbers
Support contract monitoring Maintains support contract information per device and notifies when support contracts are due to expire
Network path mapping Can present every link, switch, and router used to connect any two IP addresses across the network
TFTP server Built-in TFTP server for loading/saving configurations as well as OS images
UniCast stats Calculates per-device Unicast vs. broadcast/multicast stats, as well as per-interface stats
Internal system description values Shows OS compile date as well as OS version information
Financial performance monitoring Tracks device manufacture date, deployment date, procurement cost, amortization length, support cost to arrive at monthly operating cost
NetFlow support Support NetFlow v5, v9, IPFIX, sFlow, jFlow. Should show who is using bandwidth on a link at a specified time, as well as who a computer is communicating with
IPAM Fully integrated IPAM showing all subnets configured in the environment and what IP addresses exist on those subnets. Integrates with Microsoft DHCP.
NBAR Supports Cisco NBAR reporting on interfaces
Interface live utilization monitoring Monitors live utilization on any interface in the infrastructure with 5-second updates
Interface utilization trending Tracks the transmittal and receipt trends for all interfaces in the infrastructure
Interface error tracking Monitors all known error counters (all ifEntry errors as well as ethernet dot3Stats errors) on all interfaces
Cloud service monitoring Tracks the health, performance, and route-path to outside cloud services
Internet health check Tests connectivity to the Internet along with validating local and remote DNS services are operating
Prediction capability Proactively analyze when bandwidth will run out as well as predict where cabling faults will cause problems
Plain-English results Heuristics engine analyzes error counters, and configuration conditions, and produces plain-English answers to detected faults
CDP/LLDP support CDP and LLDP information is collected for every interface in the network
WAN interface details Tracks provider, circuit ID, contract expiration date, cost per gigabit, queueing type, 95th percentile, and MTU for all WAN links
SD-WAN underlay monitoring Tracks performance of individual carrier underlay networks to determine path stability, latency, and loss along a transit.
Trunk port monitoring Can easily find all switch-to-switch trunk ports in the environment, their configured speeds, utilization rates, and loss levels
Half-duplex report Report on all half-duplex interfaces in the environment
Unknown protocol report Report on all interfaces that have dropped packets due to unknown protocol usage
Port-mapper Finds where a computer is located on the network, as well as what is connected to any port on a switch/router/firewall
Multi-vendor network device support Will work on any vendor's network equipment
OUI lookup tool Easily determine the manufacturer of a MAC address found on the network
VLAN report Shows all VLANs configured on all network devices in the infrasructure
Global search tool Find any IP address, MAC address, OUI, DNS name, or CDP/LLDP description of a device on the network
Network service monitoring Checks port reachability or pingability of network services along with latency and loss over time
Client tracking reporting Tracks all end user computers: where they are connected, what they are, version of OS, and how long they have been online
MIB browser MIB browser with an auto-compiled MIB database for querying individual values off of devices
Custom OID monitoring/alerting Can monitor and alert on custom OIDs added to the configuration
Reporting Sends email reports on uptime, performance, health, and issues detected in the network
Alerting Sends out email alerts, or syslog alerts, that can be automated with our ticketing system

API Integrations

Web API integration Supports RESTful JSON front-end API with API documentation
NetAlly Link-Live integration Integrates with NetAlly's Link-Live API
PaloAlto API integration Integrates with PaloAlto networks API
Meraki API integration Integrates with Meraki's cloud API

VoIP/UC Monitoring

Call simulator License-unlimited call simulator to simulate synthetic RTP traffic throughout the infrastructure.
Cisco CBQoS queue monitoring Automatically monitors Cisco CBQoS on all interfaces to show queue performance, configuration, as well as drops
SIP-Trunk monitoring Monitors stability and health of connections to outside session border controllers (SBCs)
Phone locator Locates all physical handsets in the environment
Phone move alerting Alerting if a phone moves or is disconnected
MOS score reporting & alerting Reports on MOS scores to/from any monitored device
VoIP assessment report Provides automatic assessment reports on VoIP/UC traffic

Server Monitoring

Automated server monitoring Auto-add new domain servers to the monitoring system
CPU monitoring Monitor the CPU utilization of the server
Free RAM monitoring Monitors the free RAM on the server
Drive/Volume free disk space monitoring Monitors the available disk space on drives on the server
Service/daemon monitoring Monitors the status of running services/daemons on the server
Server inventory Shows the inventory information about all servers in the environment
User login monitoring Tracks who is logged in to each server’s console

Cloud Service Monitoring

Availability tracking Tracks availability of cloud services
Route-path alerting Generates alerts when a route to a cloud service changes
Latency/loss alerting Triggers alerts when latency or loss to a cloud service exceeds thresholds

User Interface

Easy-to-use interface Has an intuitive interface that does not require a training class to understand and use.
Customizable dashboards Multiple user-customizable dashboards that can be shared with other users
Responsive front-end performance The front-end interface is responsively sized and loads rapidly
Customizable color schemes Has light mode, dark mode, and other color integrations for better working environments
Custom notes Allows customizable notes to be added for each device it monitors
Custom roles Individual logins can have different roles/views
AD integration Integration with AD/LDAP for logins


Lightweight server requirements Does not require 8-CPU machines with 24 gigs of RAM
Scalability for large networks A single deployment can monitor networks with over 100,000 nodes
Can work on air-gapped networks Can be isolated to operate without Internet connectivity
Maintains all data locally All data is maintained locally; no data is "shipped to the cloud"
Virtual machine support Can be deployed to a virtual machine
Cloud server support Can be deployed to a cloud server
Broad Windows OS support Can run on any version of Windows (even Desktop OS)


Network device OS vulnerabilities Synchronizes with NIST every 24 hours to determine published vulnerabilities for OS images along with vendor remediation recommendations
Communications policy monitoring Triggers alerts if communications to/from different devices/subnets are not matching the desired policy
Detects exposures & bad practices Detects unencrypted HTTP use, telnet, unencrypted FTP, uncontrolled DNS, uncontrolled NTP, uncontrolled SMTP
Detects new devices on the network Can locate where devices are connected and where their communications are transmitted
Detects rogue infrastructure on the network Detects unapproved switches, routers, gateways, DNS servers, and DHCP servers on the network
Certificate monitoring Tracks certificate validity, expiration, and can send alerts/reports with 30-day notices before they would expire
DNS record monitoring Tracks DNS records to make sure they are valid, and alerts if a record is changed to an unapproved target
IoT device monitoring Tracks all IoT devices, their type, their connection on the network and where their communications are transmitted
Geographic data tracking Tracks where data is flowing to/from (countries) as well as volume of traffic. Can trigger alerts if communications occurs with blacklisted countries.

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