06-25-2014 12:13 PM - last edited on 06-25-2014 02:46 PM by Srynearson
Network Management Software - NMS
As an Engineer or Administrator you will eventually find the need to be able to pull information or push configuration updates to your network. If you have several different locations with different networks this can be time consuming task. This is where introducing network management software can really lighten your load and inform you of the overall health of you network.
There are many different flavors of network management software. Some examples are Airwave, Solarwinds, OpenNMS, Apparent, and plenty of other freeware versions to test out. Each of the programs have way to many capabilities to list and are all really handy to have in the right environment.
Airwave starts by adding the devices by SNMP, through a network scan. After finding all the devices you can place each device in a folder. This folder is used to group devices and also used for configuration. You can set a template configuration on the folder and when you drop a device in the folder it obtains the template.
Configuration is not the only use for network management software. Monitoring is another aspect of the software. You can monitor all aspects of a device. It will help you with keeping devices up to date and alert you of configuration mismatches. Another cool feature (one of the many) of Airwave is the Visual RF application. Visual RF will show you the location of a client device on the network. This is achieved by triangulation between Aps to calculate the location of the device. Monitoring the network traffic is also no problem. With the software you can easily figure out your network traffic and applications with in-depth analytics.
One other really interesting capability of Airwave is the ability to configure triggers. A trigger is an event that matches a configured scenario, when triggered Airwave will alert you of the event. Using this capability you can use it to perform many different useful alerts. If you have a VIP arriving, you can be alerted on arrival and initial connection to the network. If you suspect a device lost or stolen you can set a trigger to alert you on the connection of the device.
While you can make it without NMS, it will make managing the network much easier, but with the additions of being able to configure many controllers at once instead of having to log into each individual device is a major time saver.