An abundance of network management tools from Cisco and third-party suppliers underscores the importance and difficulty of maintaining networks. Progent's seasoned network management consultants are experienced at helping businesses design network management strategies based on SNMP, SYSLOG services, and Cisco Netflow protocols to create effective mechanisms for network utilization and network latency, viewing key router and switch performance characteristics, and recognizing traffic profiles, processes, and devices that use available resources.
Progent can help customers to deploy a broad selection of open source and license-based monitoring and management products to maintain a Cisco network. Utilities used by Progent's engineers 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, AlterPoint DeviceAuthority, Adventnet Netflow and Firewall Analyzer, Big Brother, and NetMRI.
Network management tools can allow organizations to understand current system utilization and intelligently plan for downstream capacity expansion. Network management tools can also be deployed to detect poor or improper uses of system resources, for example streaming multimedia, peer-to-peer sharing, etc. that can use up expensive and scarce network resources. A carefully planned network management solution can also assist companies to make informed decisions on system upgrades once they recognize how much network resources actually needed at various times.
Putting an efficient network management solution in operation ahead of time is essential to prevent major disruptions that can follow Denial Of Service (DoS) attacks and malicious viruses/Trojans. These events can leave the network unusable and without proper utilities it can be time consuming, and in some cases practically impossible, to discover the source of the trouble.
Network Management Solutions from Cisco
Cisco provides an assortment of powerful tools that should form the basis for any network management strategy. Utilized in conjunction with the top third-party tools, Cisco's network management offerings can enhance the business value of network infrastructures for companies of all sizes by dealing with important areas such as resource utilization, performance, availability, protection, repair, and capacity planning. Cisco's most familiar network management tools include:
Cisco Adaptive Security Device Manager is a browser-based Java applet that lets you configure and monitor the software built into security appliances. Cisco Adaptive Security Device Manager is installed by the adaptive security device, and allows you to configure, monitor, and control the device.
Monitor Manager is a management and monitoring application intended to meet the needs of small and midsize businesses (SMBs). Monitor Manager actively checks important appliance parameters on voice and data networks serving five to 250 workers and equipped with as many as 250 IP phones. The application offers:
Cisco Monitor Manager scans the system on a 24x7 cycle and periodically touches and collects identification and operations-tracking information from the monitored appliances in the network. Monitor Manager is a Microsoft Windows-based utility and is entirely nondisruptive to system processes and does not deploy any agent software on managed devices. Cisco Monitor Manager offers a variety of valuable features including:
- Real-time scanning of key device parameters on small and midsize business-class routers and switches, Cisco Communications Manager Express, Unity Express, security appliances, wireless access points, and VoIP phones
- Ability to manage the Cisco Unified Communications 500 communications appliance for businesses with as many as 50 users
- Network discovery and topology
- Physical and process looks at Cisco Unified Communications implementation
- Networkwide device identification collection and reporting
- Highly secure and dependable operation
- Cisco device operations monitoring
- IP Telephony monitoring
- Connection status and traffic monitoring
- Real-time alarms and notifications
- Configuration archive
Cisco Network Assistant is a desktop-based network management application designed for for LANs and WLANS for expanding companies that have as many as 40 switches and routers. By utilizing Smartports, Network Assistant streamlines setup, deployment, and ongoing administration and maintenance of Cisco networks. Cisco Network Assistant offers a centralized network view and permits network administrators to employ its features across switches, routers, and WAPs.
Cisco Security Manager is a feature-rich but easy-to-use application for managing all facets of appliance configuration and policies for PIX and ASA firewalls, virtual private networks, and Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS). The solution efficiently manages even small networks with fewer than ten appliances, but also expands to control enterprise networks with thousands of appliances. Expansion is achieved through smart policy-based control procedures that can streamline administration. Highlights of Security Manager are:
How Progent's Cisco Certified Experts Can Help Your Business with Network Management
- Supports control of Cisco router platforms running an IOS security software image, Cisco ASA 5500 family adaptive security appliances, Cisco PIX firewalls, Cisco IPS 4200 Series inline security appliances, and Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series security services modules
- Respond faster. more rapidly to attacks: specify and assign updated policies to many hundreds of devices in a few easy steps
- Rich graphical user interface offers exceptional ease-of-use
- A variety of looks that provide versatile ways to manage devices and security policies including the option to administer the security network visually on a topology image
- Comprehensive video training for the new operator to accelerate learning period
- Centrally specify which policies are shared and automatically inherited by new appliances to ensure corporate policies are implemented regularly, while providing sufficient flexibility to customize policies at the individual device level
- Ability to build a common firewall rule table for all Cisco platforms with intelligent analysis of firewall policies to determine conflicts in the rule table
- Easily configure site-to-site, hub-spoke, full-mesh IPsec, or extranet Virtual Private Network links by means of a VPN wizard
- Compatibility with Cisco Access Control Server (ACS) for granular role based access management to appliances and management functions
- Integration with security MARS system to correlate monitored data against corresponding firewall rules to support faster decision making and enhanced system availability
- Ability to assign specific tasks to each administrator in the course of the implementation of a policy, with structured change management and tracking; allows the security and systems operations staff to work cooperatively as a cohesive group with efficient coordination
Progent's Cisco-Certified network management engineers can show you how to use Cisco's network management utilities in combination with a selection of powerful open source and proprietary programs to create a complete management strategy to keep your infrastructure functioning dependably, consolidate valuable resources, guard your data, recover rapidly from hardware failure or deliberates attacks, and allow you to scale or reassign system resources effectively and economically as your organization grows.
Progent can also show you how to use network management utilities to monitor and classify system data to enable traffic shaping, which allows you to configure routers to enforce a variety of bandwidth constraints on certain classes of activity based on the importance you specify. By storing and queuing excess packets above your committed volume, and by giving priority to the most important applications, traffic shaping can prevent ISP overage penalties from spinning out of control and/or avoid lost productivity caused by brute force policing of your network traffic volume limits during peak demand.
Progent's CISM and CISSP security professionals can assist you to develop an end-to-end security strategy that encompasses your network management solution, and Progent's remote and on-site support experts and Cisco CCIE and CNA qualified engineers can use advanced network monitoring and analysis technology to isolate and remediate trouble quickly to keep your network in business.
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If you wish to get in touch with Progent about consulting expertise for Cisco networking, phone 1-800-993-9400 or go to Contact Progent.