Are you a network admin who gets overwhelmed by the number of devices they have to manage? We can only imagine the plight you have to go through. Technological advancements have extended the scope of network monitoring. Way beyond the conventional norms of preventing downtime, network monitoring in today’s context is about maintaining the optimum performance of devices while delivering an enhanced end-user experience.
However, to monitor a network and, further, gain actionable insights about it, a network admin has to get a lay of the land first. This calls for increased visibility into the network that takes into account its physical layout, the way in which the devices are connected with each other, and how the virtual machines (VMs) and the on-premises devices work hand in hand with each other to deliver a seamless end-user experience.
What are the challenges faced in network visibility?
Following are some of the major challenges faced by network admins due to lack of visibility.
1. The size of the network
Enterprise networks are usually colossal in size since they require a large capacity to cater to their customers. There might be a lot of devices and interfaces associated with the network. Achieving visibility across the entire network spectrum, from devices’ usage patterns to comprehensive interface details, is challenging.
2. Distributed architecture
Enterprise networks are spread across a huge area. The multiple network locations situated across the globe must be monitored to ensure their optimum performance. Gaining visibility into a distributed network is a difficult task owing to the size and complexity of the network.
3. Hybrid networks
Networks today are not homogeneous but heterogeneous in nature, which means they are comprised of both on-premises devices and VMs alike. A VM host might house several VMs inside it. It’s important to keep tabs on both the host as well as the VMs to ensure optimum network performance. Monitoring and gaining visibility across such a hybrid network is very difficult.
Networks today are being constantly scaled to meet business goals. The network must be on par with the optimistic business goals set. This dynamic nature is a roadblock to visualization efforts.
5. Multi-vendor networks
Networks today use devices from different vendors. Gaining visibility into such a network calls for a comprehensive visualization under a single pane of glass.
How can enhancing visibility help you overcome performance bottlenecks?
Without comprehensive visibility, network admins will be flying blind and have no idea about the issues they are dealing with. Following are some ways bottlenecks can be circumvented with enhanced visibility:
- Allocate and utilize resources effectively: In a VM network, network admins might have little or no visibility over VMs and how they are being used. With less visibility into the network, the network admin is highly likely to allocate resources improperly without taking into account the current state and performance of the VMs. By eliminating network blind spots, network admins can get a comprehensive view of the performance of their VMs, thereby helping them allocate resources efficiently.
- Overcome network congestion: When a network is dealt way more than it can process, it becomes sluggish. To battle this, network admins need in-depth visibility into a network’s bandwidth usage and patterns so that they can identify resource-hogging applications and optimize them.
- Reduce latency: Latency is the time between a request being sent and a request being received. Higher latency leads to a decrease in the speed of the network, which hampers the end-user experience. By gaining in-depth visibility into the network’s traffic patterns and network paths, admins can monitor their WAN infrastructure effectively and reduce the latency, thereby enhancing the network speed.
- Eliminate packet loss: Packet loss in a network might lead to performance deterioration due to network disruption or loss of network connectivity. By gaining visibility into their network, network admins can get the real-time status of their devices and applications. This helps them detect and rectify issues pertaining to packet loss as soon as possible.
- Conduct root cause analysis: To get to the root cause of an issue effectively, network admins must have comprehensive visibility into their network. Only when network admins have an understanding about the way the devices connect and interact with each other in a network can they figure out where the bottleneck lies.
How can a network monitoring solution help you overcome these challenges?
With the advancements in networks, there has been a proportional advancement in the field of network monitoring, too. There are a lot of powerful tools out there on the market that network admins can leverage to not just gain enhanced visibility into their network, but also to maintain optimum network performance. With the help of a network monitoring solution, network admins can:
- Gain insights about the real-time usage of the VMs in their environment. This helps them identify the idle VMs and allocate resources to other business-critical VMs.
- Monitor their network’s traffic patterns and bandwidth usage. This helps them identify resource-intensive applications, which can later be optimized for increased performance.
- Get the real-time status of any device and stay a step ahead of potential network issues by putting together the entire picture from various sources. This helps network admins stay proactive and crop out issues as they arise.
- Monitor not just the devices in their network but also the interfaces associated with it. This helps them monitor critical interface metrics, such as interface speed and interface traffic, that further help them keep close tabs on network latency and packet loss.
- Automate monotonous actions and focus on other critical aspects of network management.
Illuminate your network with ManageEngine OpManager
ManageEngine OpManager is a comprehensive network monitoring solution that helps network admins eliminate blind spots and gain enhanced visibility into the network, no matter how complex the environment gets. Equipped with powerful visualization features and monitoring capabilities, OpManager is your one-stop solution to monitor your entire network, optimize it for the best performance, and gain actionable insights that later help you formulate strategies aligned with current market trends, existing network usage patterns, and the organization’s business goals.
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