Network Management Solutions SupportA wealth of network management products from Cisco and other vendors underscores the value and complexity of supporting IT infrastructure. Progent's Cisco-certified network management engineers are experienced at helping businesses develop network management strategies based on Simple Network Management Protocol, SYSLOG services, and Cisco IOS NetFlow to create powerful tools for understanding network utilization and network latency, viewing important router and switch operational characteristics, and identifying traffic profiles, processes, and devices utilizing available resources.

Progent can assist businesses to deploy a rich selection of open source and proprietary monitoring and management solutions to manage Cisco infrastructure. Tools used by Progent's engineers include MRTG, Cacti, Nagios, PRTG, Cisco Cisco Adaptive Security Device Manager, Cisco Monitor Manager, CiscoWorks, Cisco Security Manager, OpenView, Wireshark/Ethereal, AlterPoint DeviceAuthority, Advent and Firewall Analyzer, Big Brother, Solarwinds Orion, and Necordia NetMRI.

Network management tools can allow organizations to be aware of current system usage and effectively plan for future capacity expansion. Management utilities can also be deployed to detect inefficient or improper utilization of network resources, for example streaming multimedia, peer-to-peer file exchange, etc. that can waste expensive and limited network resources. A well planned network management plan can also assist businesses to make intelligent decisions on network upgrades once they appreciate how much network resources actually needed at various times.

Having an efficient network management system in operation in advance is essential to avoid major disruptions that can result from Denial Of Service attacks and malicious viruses/Trojans. These events can leave the network unusable and without appropriate utilities it can be difficult, and in some cases practically impossible, to discover the location of the trouble.

Network Management Solutions from Cisco
Cisco provides a selection of powerful utilities that should form the foundation for any management strategy. Used in conjunction with appropriate outside vendor products, Cisco's network management offerings can enhance the competitive value of networks for organizations of all sizes by dealing with key areas such as system utilization, throughput, availability, protection, troubleshooting, and capacity planning. Cisco's most popular network management products include:

Cisco ASDM is a web utility that allows you to configure and monitor the software on security devices. ASDM is loaded by the Cisco appliance, and allows you to configure, track, and control the unit.

Monitor Manager is a management and monitoring solution designed to meet the needs of small and midsize organizations. Monitor Manager continuously tracks important appliance processes on voice/data networks used by five to 250 users and equipped with as many as 250 Cisco Unified IP phones. Cisco Monitor Manager provides:

  • Up-to-date scanning of key appliance processes on SMB-class network appliances, Communications Manager Express, Unity Express, security appliances, access points, and IP phones
  • Ability to manage the Unified Communications 500 Series for businesses with as many as 50 users
Cisco Monitor Manager monitors the network on a 24x7 basis and periodically touches and collects identification and performance-tracking information from the managed appliances in the network. Cisco Monitor Manager is a Microsoft Windows-based application and is entirely nondisruptive to system operations and does not use any agent on target devices. Cisco Monitor Manager provides a rich set of useful features including:
  • Network discovery and physical topology
  • Physical and process views of Cisco Unified Communications implementation
  • Networkwide inventory collection and reporting
  • Highly secure and dependable operation
  • Appliance operations monitoring
  • IP Telephony tracking
  • Connection status and data traffic tracking
  • Real-time alerts and notifications
  • Documentation
  • Setup archive

Cisco Network Assistant is a PC-hosted network management application designed for for LANs and WLANS for expanding businesses with up to 40 switches and routers. By using Smartports technology, Cisco Network Assistant simplifies configuration, deployment, and continuing administration and maintenance of Cisco-powered environments. The application provides a unified network view and permits IT administrators to deploy its functions across switches, routers, and WAPs.

Security Manager is a powerful but easy-to-use solution for centrally provisioning all facets of appliance set up and policies for Cisco firewalls, virtual private networks, and IPS. Cisco Security Manager efficiently manages even small environments with fewer than ten appliances, but also expands to manage enterprise networks with thousands of appliances. Expansion is achieved via smart policy-based control techniques that can simplify administration. Key features of Security Manager are:

  • Allows provisioning for Cisco routers configured with a Cisco IOS security image, Cisco ASA 5500 Series adaptive security appliances, Cisco PIX security appliances, Cisco IPS 4200 family inline security appliances, and Cisco Catalyst 6500 security modules
  • Reacts faster. more rapidly to attacks: specify and apply new security policies to thousands of devices in a few simple steps
  • Rich GUI provides superior ease-of-use
  • Multiple looks that provide flexible ways to manage devices and policies including the capability to manage the security network visually on a topology image
  • Extensive video training for the first-time user to speed up training period
  • Globally call out which policies are shared and automatically inherited by additional appliances to make sure corporate policies are configured consistently, while offering sufficient versatility to customize policies at the individual device level
  • Capability to create a single firewall rule database for Cisco firewalls with smart evaluation of firewall policies to detect anomalies within the rule table
  • Easily set up location-to-location, hub-spoke, full mesh, or extranet Virtual Private Network links by means of a few mouse clicks
  • Integration with Cisco ACS for granular role based connection management to devices and administration functions
  • Operation with security MARS to correlate monitored data with related firewall rules to help with quicker decision making and enhanced network up time
  • Capability to assign specific tasks to each manager in the course of the implementation of a rule, with formal change management and tracking; permits the security and systems operations staff to act cooperatively as a single group with effective coordination
How Progent's Cisco Certified Experts Can Assist You with Network Management Solutions
Progent's Cisco-qualified network management consultants can show you how to use Cisco's network management tools in combination with a variety of powerful third-party applications to create a comprehensive management solution to keep your network running dependably, consolidate expensive resources, guard your information, recover quickly from equipment failure or malicious attacks, and allow you to scale or reassign network resources intelligently and affordably as your organization evolves.

Progent can also assist you to use network management applications to monitor and categorize network data to implement traffic shaping, which allows you to configure Cisco routers to enforce different bandwidth constraints on certain classes of activity based on the priorities you specify. By storing and queuing data packets above your contracted volume, and by giving preference to business-critical processes, traffic shaping can keep ISP overage penalties from spinning out of control and/or eliminate gaps in worker productivity caused by brute force enforcement of your network traffic volume limits during peak demand.

Progent's CISM, CISSP, and ISSAP security consultants can assist you to develop a comprehensive security strategy that encompasses your network management solution, and Progent's remote and on-site network experts and Cisco CCIE-certified consultants can utilize advanced network management tools to identify and remediate problems rapidly to keep your network in business.

To find out more information concerning Progent's engineering expertise for Cisco networking products, select a topic:

If you wish to get in touch with Progent about consulting help for Cisco products, phone 1-800-993-9400 or refer to Contact Progent.

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