Nectus offer new way to see your network in real time

To keep a good track of your network it is necessary to have a network diagram of your topology so you can know for sure where each device is located, where it is connected and in case there is a failure in your network it is easier to find the devices affected.

You can create your own topology and add each device manually even though that may take a lot of time depending on the size of your network and every time a new device is added to the network, you must add it to your topology manually. Sounds like a lot of work.

Luckily with Nectus this process can be avoided! Nectus can generate Layer 2 and Layer 3 topologies in just one click and if a new device is added to your network, it is added automatically to your topology.

This is how your topology would look like:

And once your topology is ready you can perform various actions to get live stats of your network’s performance and usage such as:

  • Show graphs of all basic metrics for each interface: utilization, errors, dropped packets, availably and traffic volume.

 

Here is an example of an Interface Utilization Graph:

 

  • Show interface and device availability status. If an interface or device goes down, it will generate and alarm sound and show red blinking color directly on Topology screen.

 

Here is how it would look like if a device went down:

 

  • User can interact with topology via device and links context menus and generate reports directly from Topology GUI.

 

With just one click users can generate graphs to monitor a link’s performance and show link info as pictured below:

 

Users can see real-time performance graphs from each device on the network, show device basic info, ping device from browser, start an SSH session and generate Cisco SmartNet reports directly from the topology by just right clicking on any device.

 

This is an example of latency graph for single device:

Nectus offers new way to create and keep up to date your network topology, making your network topology live and interactive.

It keeps track of all performance metric and displays is directly on topology with all its real-time stats, making it easier and faster to detect a failure and correct it.

 

Download your 60-day evaluation

Selecting fastest Database Engine for Netflow Storage

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Well, if you are reading this article you probably know what NetFlow is and how much data it can generate. 100GB of NetFlow records per day is not something totally unusual in NetFlow business.

We tried most of the commercial and open-source existing database engines like Microsoft SQL Server, MongoDB, PostegreSQL, MySQL or even Oracle and were not happy with results.

We tried turning off all the indexing, implemented daily partitions,  decided not to store some less important NetFlow fields  and may be even

upgraded your storage to those fancy M2 SSD and still NetFlow reports took minutes to appear.

If your NetFlow rates are somewhere under 1,000 flows per second you can skip this reading, pick any  DB and it will produce acceptable results.

Problems becomes visible when your flow rates  reaches 2,000 fps and at 10,000 fps just doing INSERT to your tables takes 70% of the time.

10,000 flows per second produces 600,000 database records every minute and only INSERT statement takes around 40 second to process leaving only 20 seconds of

available time  for any reports to be generated. The main problem here is that conventional DB engines are not optimized for storing read-only sequential data such

as time based event logging or NetFlow. Best database engine for Netflow has to be designed with read-only sequential access in mind, no “Delete-Update” functionality is required for NetFlow.

This restriction allows great simplification of DB internal formatting structure  and processing logic. Second DB feature that best suited for NetFlow is reduction of possible Indexes to one.

There is absolutely no value in having indexes for Source/Destination IP addresses or Source/Destination ports as those indexes only benefit single type of NetFlow report

and each index will double your table size on disk. The only Index that is used in all reports is Index by flow time stamp as all NetFlow reports are focused on very specific time frame.

And last but not least DB feature that is required for perfect NetFlow storage is hardware optimization. Allocating each DB thread to a dedicated CPU core  has shown

to increase query processing time by 10x.

When  developing our own NetFlow collector we tried all well-known DB engines with one performing slightly better than others but none of them were able to support the golden standard of 30Kfps.

This was until we met the ClickHouse, open source DB engine developed by Yandex. ClickHouse has a long list of limitations, but those limitations are implemented with

a single purpose to have the fastest logging DB engine available on the market. With a help of ClickHouse Nectus can process 50,000 flow per second in single VM which  is currently

a record among all commercially available NetFlow collectors.

Download your 60-day Trial of the best NetFlow collector.

 

 

 

 

 

Proactive vs Reactive network monitoring with Nectus

Most of the enterprise grade monitoring tools allow predefined thresholds to be set for specific monitoring parameters such as interface utilization,

RAM utilization or percentage of free TCAM available on switches. When a specific metric exceeds a predefined threshold you will receive an email alert, text message, or…

a phone call from your manager.  Likely those thresholds are tuned to a higher side to prevent false positives or filter out the events with a short duration.

But in any case alerts will be sent after critical conditions have already occurred and damage has already been done. This approach is called reactive network monitoring

and it has its value. But what if you can get an alert before critical conditions actually happen?  Nectus NMS is a pioneer of next-gen proactive monitoring and in selected

case-studies it demonstrated an ability to forecast critical operational conditions up to 1 week in advance with 95% accuracy.

Nectus analyses historical daily, weekly  and monthly fluctuations of network operational metrics such as traffic volumes, interface utilization and extrapolates it

based on polynomial curves for next 7 days. This advanced mathematical approach demonstrated 95% accuracy in prediction of critical operational

conditions for next 7 days and 80% accuracy for next 30 days.

The more time you have before operational conditions actually reach critical thresholds, the more options you  have to fix it before it impacts production.

Download your 60-day evaluation copy of Nectus

Next Generation of Network Discovery and Monitoring Tools.. and NetFlow

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Next Generation of Network Discovery and Monitoring Tools

There are many reasons why your network needs to be monitored. It is essential to any network administrator to keep track of the network’s performance and usage in real time and to detect failures, slowness or any other threat that could be affecting the network. Every device that is added to the network, every change in the topology or any failure needs to be immediately detected. That is why we need a network monitoring software to make the best of our network and that is exactly what Nectus is for.

Nectus is a network discovery, monitoring and visualization software and its main role is to discover network topology, generate a visual network diagram and keep it up to date, detecting any failure or unusual behavior that could be affecting the network and alerting the network administrator immediately.

These are the Nectus key features:

  • Automatically discovers connections between devices (via Cisco Discovery Protocol) and stores all this connections in a Database.
  • Network discovery is run everyday and if any new device has been added to the network, the topology is updated automatically so network diagrams will always be up to date, no need to do it yourself so you will be saving your time. You can generate L2 and L3 network topology in just one click, way better than Microsoft Visio!
  • Real time monitoring is overlaid on top of network diagrams. You will be able to see utilization, errors and dropped packets or up/down status directly on your diagrams.
  • Automated configuration backup and configuration changes for routers and switches along with best practice audits so you can find and fix misconfigured devices.
  • Includes free integrated NetFlow collector.
  • Syslog Server: Store unlimited number of Syslog messages.
  • URL Monitoring: Monitor UP/DOWN and latency for any URL.
  • Track configuration differences. Easily find differences in configurations before and after the change.
  • Layer 3 Traffic Path Visualization: See how packets travel from A to B.

If you are looking for a software to keep your network in a best shape, then Nectus is your best choice!

You can download a 60 days fully functional demo at http://nectus5.com/download/ and try all these features yourself.

 

The best network management software just got better.. IPAM

We will be adding IPAM (IP Address Management) module to the Nectus NMS starting from January 2018.

No special licensing will be required and it will be immediately available to all current Nectus users free of charge.

Support for  IPv4 and IPv6 address space management, API interface for third party integration and many more cool features ..

Download Nectus

Best practices for router interface description format

Implementing company-wide standards for interface description strings in routers or switches should be a top priority for all network engineers.

Well defined and structured description strings helps with automation for the most tedious and boring manual steps associated with deployment, configuration,

monitoring and decommission of any network connections. Network interface descriptions should include some of the following information elements encoded with special characters

that allow easy parsing by scripts, network management tools and makes easy for human eye to spot any problems during troubleshooting sessions.

Here is the sample naming format and structure that we normally recommend  and that is easily integrated with Nectus NMS parsing scripts.

  1. Link Type.  Example of 3 characters link type encoding  can be: BBN – Backbone, TRL – Internet Transit,  OOB- Out of Band, UPL – Uplink, DCI – DC Interconnect…
  2. Connected Device name. Name of the remote device connected to this link.
  3. Status. T – Testing, D – Decommed, P – In Production
  4. Telco provider’s name : LVL3 , ATT, VRZ, ABN, TELIA, XO.. etc
  5. Telco Circuit ID
  6. Phone number to call in case of the outage.

Usage example:

interface TenGigabitEthernet 1/5

description DCI#P#ATT#T4/HCGS/831899/SC#1-800-456-5672

 

Manage all Telco circuits and circuit contracts with Nectus CircuitDB

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We are proud to announce that our next Nectus release will include the most powerful and feature rich telco circuit management platform available on the market today.

Nectus CircuitDB provides a central repository of all of your circuit contracts and provide reminders well before contract expiration times so you can renegotiate better prices with your telco provider.

Circuit DB is fully integrated with Nectus Network Discovery and Monitoring module which allows you to map Circuit ID directly to specific router interface and get real time visibility of  circuit UP/DOWN status.

Nectus can send email alerts directly to telco support in case of specific circuit is Down or automatically open support cases on telco portals ( with selected number of telco providers).

Nectus CircuitDB can calculate circuit UP time based on Monitoring statistics provided by core Nectus NMS to verify contracted SLAs.

Combined with automatic Network Topology generation that shows where specific circuit is located Nectus CircuitDB is a core tool for all network engineers and procurement experts.

CircuitDB functionality added to Nectus NMS

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CircuitDB gives ability to track of all the telco circuits (Internet, MPLS, T1 etc), carrier contracts, cabinet/rack/patch panel information.

Support for configurable email alerts on approaching circuit contract renewal dates, integration with real time circuit monitoring.

Never pay for circuits that not being used and  many more cool features.