Network Management Solutions EngineersA wealth of network management utilities from Cisco and other suppliers underscores the importance and complexity of network management. Progent's Cisco-certified network management consultants are experienced at assisting companies develop management solutions utilizing on Simple Network Management Protocol, SYSLOG services, and Cisco IOS NetFlow to build powerful tools for tracking network bandwidth usage and network latency, viewing key router and switch performance metrics, and identifying traffic profiles, applications, and devices utilizing available services.

Progent can help customers to utilize a rich selection of open source and license-based monitoring and management solutions to maintain Cisco infrastructure. Tools familiar to Progent's consultants include MRTG, Nagios, PRTG, Cisco Cisco ASDM, Cisco Monitor Manager, Cisco Security Manager, OpenView, Concord E-Health, Adventnet Netflow and Firewall Analyzer, Big Brother, Solarwinds Orion, and NetMRI.

Network management tools can help IT administrators to understand current system usage and effectively plan for downstream traffic increases. Management tools can also be deployed to identify poor or improper uses of network services, such as streaming audio and video, peer-to-peer file sharing, etc. that can use up expensive or limited network resources. A carefully designed network management plan can also help businesses to make intelligent decisions on system improvements after they understand how much system bandwidth really required at any one time.

Putting an effective network management system in operation ahead of time is vital to avoid major disruptions that can be due to Denial Of Service attacks and malicious viruses/Trojans. Such assaults can leave the network unusable and in the absence of appropriate tools it can be time consuming, and in some cases virtually impossible, to find the location of the trouble.

Network Management Solutions from Cisco
Cisco provides a variety of powerful tools that should be the foundation for any network management solution. Used in combination with the top outside vendor products, Cisco's network management software can enhance the competitive value of network infrastructures for organizations of any size by dealing with key areas such as system utilization, performance, resilience, protection, troubleshooting, and scalability. Cisco's top network management products include:

Adaptive Security Device Manager (ASDM) is a browser-based utility that permits you configure and operate the software built into security devices. Adaptive Security Device Manager is loaded by the adaptive security appliance, and enables you to set up, monitor, and manage the device.

Monitor Manager is a management and monitoring solution intended for the needs of small and midsize organizations. Monitor Manager continuously tracks key appliance parameters on voice/data networks serving five to 250 workers and equipped with up to 250 Voice over IP phones. The application offers:

  • Up-to-date tracking of key appliance processes on SMB-class routers, switches, and voice gateways, Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express, Unity Express, security devices, wireless access points, and VoIP phones
  • Ability to manage the Cisco Unified Communications 500 Series for organizations with as many as 50 users
Cisco Monitor Manager scans the network on a 24x7 basis and frequently polls and gathers identification and performance-tracking data from the monitored devices in the system. Monitor Manager is a Windows-based application and is entirely transparent to IT processes and does not use any agent on target devices. The application provides a rich set of useful features such as:
  • Voice and data network discovery and physical topology
  • Device and process looks at Unified Communications implementation
  • Networkwide inventory logging and reporting
  • Highly secure and dependable operation
  • Cisco device performance tracking
  • IP Telephony monitoring
  • Connection status and traffic monitoring
  • Real-time alerts and notices
  • Documentation
  • Setup archive

Cisco Network Assistant is a PC-hosted management tool designed for for LANs and WLANS for expanding companies that have up to 40 Cisco switches and routers. By running Cisco's Smartports mechanism, Cisco Network Assistant streamlines configuration, deployment, and continuing management and maintenance of Cisco-powered environments. The application offers a centralized network view and allows network administrators to deploy its features across Cisco switches, routers, and WAPs.

Security Manager is a highly functional but easy-to-use application for managing all facets of device set up and policies for Cisco PIX and ASA security appliances, virtual private networks, and Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS). Security Manager efficiently handles even small networks with no more than than ten appliances, but also scales to manage enterprise systems with thousands of appliances. Expansion is achieved via smart policy-driven control techniques that can streamline administration. Key features of Cisco Security Manager include:

  • Allows control of Cisco router platforms running an IOS security software image, Cisco ASA 5500 family firewalls, PIX firewalls, IPS 4200 sensors, and Catalyst 6500 Series security services modules
  • Reacts more quickly to threats: specify and assign updated policies to thousands of devices in just a few steps
  • Rich graphical user interface provides exceptional ease-of-use
  • A variety of looks that offer versatile ways to control devices and policies including the option to administer the security environment visually on a system topology image
  • Extensive video training for the novice operator to accelerate training period
  • Centrally call out which policies are shared and automatically inherited by new devices to make sure company-wide policies are implemented regularly, while providing optional flexibility to customize policies at the individual device level
  • Capability to build a single firewall rule database for Cisco platforms with smart evaluation of firewall policies to detect anomalies within the rule table
  • Easily set up site-to-site, hub-and-spoke, full-mesh IPsec, or extranet Virtual Private Network interfaces by means of a VPN wizard
  • Integration with Cisco ACS for low-level role based connection control to devices and management services
  • Operation with security MARS to compare events against corresponding security appliance rules to support faster decision making and increased network availability
  • Ability to allocate particular jobs to each manager during the implementation of a policy, with structured change management and tracking; allows the security and network operations staff to act in sync as a single unit with efficient coordination
How Progent's Consultants Can Assist You with Network Management
Progent's Cisco-qualified network consultants can show you how to utilize Cisco's network management utilities in combination with a variety of effective third-party programs to develop a comprehensive management strategy to keep your network running dependably, consolidate valuable resources, protect your information, recover quickly from hardware breakdowns or malicious attacks, and enable you to scale or repurpose network hardware intelligently and affordably as your business evolves.

Progent can also show you how to use network management applications to analyze and categorize system data to enable traffic shaping, which allows you to set up routers to enforce a variety of throughput restrictions on designated types of processes based on the importance you specify. By storing and sorting excess packets above your contracted rates, and by assigning priority to business-critical applications, traffic shaping can keep service provider excess usage penalties from spiraling out of control and/or avoid gaps in productivity caused by brute force policing of your network bandwidth limits during peak use.

Progent's CISM, CISSP, and ISSAP security specialists can show you how to develop an end-to-end security plan that incorporates your network management solution, and Progent's remote and on-site network specialists and Cisco CCIE and CNA qualified engineers can use the latest network management tools to identify and remediate problems quickly to keep your network productive.

To see additional details about Progent's consulting help for Cisco networking products, pick a topic:

If you wish to ask Progent about technical expertise for Cisco products, phone 1-800-993-9400 or refer to Contact Progent.

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