Cisco Network Management Solutions Professional HelpA wealth of network management tools from Cisco and other suppliers underscores the value and difficulty of supporting IT infrastructure. Progent's Cisco-certified network management engineers are experienced at assisting companies design network management solutions utilizing on Simple Network Management Protocol, SYSLOG services, and Cisco IOS NetFlow to create effective tools for network bandwidth usage and latency, viewing key router and switch performance metrics, and identifying traffic patterns, applications, and devices utilizing available services.

Progent can help customers to utilize a broad range of open source and proprietary monitoring and management products to manage a Cisco-powered environment. Tools used by Progent's consultants include Cacti, Nagios, Paessler Router Traffic Grapher, Cisco Adaptive Security Device Manager (ASDM), Cisco Monitor Manager, Cisco Network Assistant, Cisco Security Manager, OpenView, Wireshark/Ethereal, Concord E-Health, AlterPoint DeviceAuthority, Advent and Firewall Analyzer, Big Brother, Solarwinds Orion, and NetMRI.

Network management platforms can allow IT administrators to understand current network utilization and effectively plan for downstream capacity increases. Management tools can also be deployed to identify inefficient or improper uses of system resources, such as streaming multimedia, peer-to-peer sharing, etc. that can eat up valuable or limited network bandwidth. A carefully planned network management solution can also aid organizations to make informed choices on wide and local area network enhancements once they appreciate how much system bandwidth historically required at various times.

Putting an effective network management system in operation in advance is vital to avoid severe disruptions that can be caused by DoS attacks and dangerous viruses/Trojans. Such assaults can leave the network unstable and without appropriate tools it can be difficult, if not practically impossible, to identify the location of the trouble.

Network Management Tools from Cisco
Cisco has developed a selection of effective tools that should be the foundation for any network management solution. Used in combination with the top outside vendor tools, Cisco's network management offerings can enhance the business value of network infrastructures for companies of all sizes by helping with key areas such as system utilization, throughput, availability, protection, troubleshooting, and scalability. Cisco's top network management tools include:

Adaptive Security Device Manager (ASDM) is a browser-based utility that allows you to configure and operate the software built into network devices. Cisco ASDM is loaded by the network appliance, and allows you to set up, track, and control the unit.

Monitor Manager is a comprehensive management solution intended to handle the requirements of small and midsize businesses. Monitor Manager continuously checks key device parameters on voice and data environments used by 5 to 250 users and with as many as 250 Voice over IP phones. Cisco Monitor Manager offers:

  • Up-to-date monitoring of key appliance processes on SMB-class routers, switches, and voice gateways, Cisco Communications Manager Express, Cisco Unity Express, security devices, WAPs, and IP phones
  • Support for the Cisco Unified Communications 500 appliance for businesses with up to 50 workers
Monitor Manager monitors the system on a 24x7 cycle and periodically touches and gathers inventory and performance-monitoring information from the monitored appliances in the system. Cisco Monitor Manager is a Microsoft Windows-based utility and is entirely nondisruptive to IT operations and does not deploy any agent on target appliances. Cisco Monitor Manager offers a variety of useful features and benefits such as:
  • Voice and data network discovery and topology
  • Device and service level views of Cisco Unified Communications implementation
  • Networkwide device identification logging and documentation
  • Highly secure and dependable operation
  • Device performance monitoring
  • VoIP Telephony monitoring
  • Interface status and data traffic tracking
  • Real-time alarms and event notification
  • Documentation
  • Configuration archive

Network Assistant is a PC-hosted management tool designed for for wired and wireless LANs (WLANs) for growing organizations with as many as 40 switches and routers. By using Smartports technology, Cisco Network Assistant streamlines setup, deployment, and ongoing administration and support of Cisco-powered environments. Network Assistant offers a centralized system view and allows IT managers to employ its features among switches, routers, and WAPs.

Cisco Security Manager is a highly functional but simple to operate application for managing all aspects of device configuration and security policies for Cisco firewalls, virtual private networks (VPNs), and Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS). Security Manager efficiently manages even small networks consisting of no more than than ten devices, but also expands to control enterprise systems composed of thousands of routers, switches, and firewalls. Expansion is enabled through smart policy-based control procedures that can simplify administration. Key features of Security Manager are:

  • Supports control of Cisco router platforms configured with a Cisco IOS security image, ASA 5500 firewalls, Cisco PIX security appliances, IPS 4200 sensors, and Catalyst 6500 Series security services modules
  • Respond more quickly to threats: define and assign updated policies to thousands of appliances in a few easy steps
  • Intuitive GUI offers superior ease-of-use
  • Multiple looks that offer flexible ways to manage appliances and policies such as the ability to administer the security environment graphically on a system topology image
  • Comprehensive video training for the new user to reduce training time
  • Centrally call out which policies are common and inherited by additional appliances to ensure corporate policies are implemented regularly, at the same time providing optional flexibility to customize policies at the local appliance level
  • Ability to create a common rule database for all Cisco platforms with smart evaluation of firewall policies to determine conflicts within the rule base
  • Quickly set up site-to-site, hub-and-spoke, full-mesh IPsec, or extranet Virtual Private Network links with a few mouse clicks
  • Compatibility with Cisco Access Control Server (ACS) for low-level role based connection control to appliances and management services
  • Integration with Cisco security MARS to correlate monitored data with related firewall rules to help with quicker management decisions and increased system availability
  • Ability to assign specific tasks to each administrator during the implementation of a policy, with formal change management and logging; permits the security and systems operations staff to work together as a cohesive group with effective teamwork
How Progent's Consultants Can Help You with Network Management
Progent's Cisco-certified network management engineers can show you how to use Cisco's network management utilities alongside a variety of powerful third-party applications to develop a comprehensive management strategy to keep your infrastructure functioning smoothly, conserve valuable resources, guard your information, recover rapidly from hardware failure or malicious assaults, and enable you to expand or repurpose system resources effectively and affordably as your company grows.

Progent can also assist you to utilize network management utilities to analyze and classify system data to enable traffic shaping, which permits you to set up routers to impose a variety of throughput constraints on certain classes of activity according to the importance you assign. By storing and queuing excess packets above your committed rates, and by assigning preference to critical applications, traffic shaping can prevent ISP excess usage penalties from spiraling out of reach and/or eliminate gaps in worker productivity resulting from indiscriminate policing of your network bandwidth limits during periods of heavy demand.

Progent's CISM and CISSP security consultants can assist you to create an end-to-end security strategy that incorporates your network management solution, and Progent's remote and on-site network specialists and Cisco CCIE and CNA qualified engineers can utilize advanced network management tools to identify and fix trouble quickly to keep your network in business.

To find out additional details about Progent's consulting help for Cisco solutions, select a topic:

In order to get in touch with Progent about technical expertise for Cisco products, call 1-800-993-9400 or refer to Contact Progent.

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