Network management tools assist organizations to implement infrastructure efficiently, access client details rapidly, track system operation, troubleshoot issues, protect against and react to threats, and optimize responsiveness. Network management systems can spot inefficient or improper uses of network resources like streaming media or peer-to-peer file sharing that can burn up bandwidth, lower employee output or enable data leakage. A prudently crafted network management environment can also assist organizations to make informed network enhancement decisions by exposing tendencies in resource usage for various periods or tasks.

Cisco Meraki Dashboard Experts

The Meraki Dashboard offers simplified cloud management for Cisco infrastructure hardware

Cisco has developed a diverse and growing portfolio of infrastructure management solutions that allow centralized management for local, cloud-based, or hybrid network models. With Cisco's newer security, switching, and wireless networking products, you can choose among Meraki, DNA Center, or CLI management platforms for network management. For example, you can connect newer Catalyst or Meraki switches and Catalyst or Meraki Wi-Fi APs to the Meraki dashboard to monitor and manage critical components of your corporate infrastructure from the cloud. Progent's Cisco Catalyst WiFi access point consulting experts, Meraki Wi-Fi AP consultants, Catalyst switches experts, and Meraki switches consulting experts can assist you to design, deploy and tune a modern solution for network infrastructure monitoring and management.

Legacy Network Management Platforms from Cisco and Others
Cisco Network Management Solutions ConsultingAn abundance of network management tools from Cisco and third-party vendors highlights the importance and complexity of maintaining networks. Progent's Cisco-certified network management consultants are expert at helping companies develop network management solutions utilizing on Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP), Syslog, and NetFlow protocols to build effective mechanisms for tracking network utilization and network latency, monitoring key router and switch performance characteristics, and identifying traffic patterns, applications, and devices utilizing available resources.

Progent can help businesses to utilize a rich range of open source and license-based monitoring and management products to maintain a Cisco-powered environment. Utilities used by Progent's engineers include MRTG, Cacti, Nagios, PRTG, Cisco Cisco Adaptive Security Device Manager, Cisco Monitor Manager, Cisco Network Assistant, CiscoWorks, Cisco Security Manager, OpenView, Wireshark/Ethereal, AlterPoint DeviceAuthority, Adventnet Netflow, Solarwinds Orion, and NetMRI.

Network management platforms can allow IT administrators to understand existing network usage and effectively plan for downstream traffic increases. Management utilities can also be used to identify poor or inappropriate utilization of system resources, such as streaming video, peer-to-peer file sharing, etc. that can use up valuable or limited network bandwidth. A well planned network management strategy can also enable businesses to arrive at intelligent decisions on system improvements once they appreciate the amount of system resources historically needed at specific times.

Having an efficient network management system in operation beforehand is vital to prevent severe disruptions that can result from DoS attacks and malicious viruses. Such events can render the network unstable and in the absence of proper utilities it can be difficult, and sometimes practically impossible, to identify the location of the problem.

Network Management Solutions from Cisco
Cisco provides a variety of powerful tools that should be the basis for any network management strategy. Used in conjunction with appropriate third-party applications, Cisco's network management offerings can enhance the competitive value of network infrastructures for companies of all sizes by dealing with important areas such as resource utilization, throughput, resilience, protection, troubleshooting, and scalability. Cisco's most familiar network management tools include:

Cisco ASDM is a browser-based Java applet that lets you configure and operate the management utilities built into security devices. Adaptive Security Device Manager is installed by the adaptive security device, and enables you to set up, track, and manage the unit.

Cisco Monitor Manager is a comprehensive management application intended to address the needs of small and midsize companies. Monitor Manager actively checks key device parameters on voice and data networks serving five to 250 workers and with up to 250 Voice over IP phones. Cisco Monitor Manager offers:

  • Up-to-date tracking of key appliance parameters on small and midsize business-class routers and switches, Cisco Unified Communications Manager Express, Cisco Unity Express, security appliances, access points, and IP phones
  • Ability to manage the Cisco Unified Communications 500 communications appliance for organizations with as many as 50 users
Cisco Monitor Manager tracks the network on a round-the-clock basis and periodically polls and gathers inventory and performance-tracking data from the managed appliances in the network. Monitor Manager is a Microsoft Windows-based application and is entirely transparent to IT operations and does not use any agent software on target appliances. Monitor Manager offers a variety of useful features such as:
  • Network discovery and topology
  • Physical and process views of Unified Communications implementation
  • Networkwide inventory collection and documentation
  • Highly secure and dependable operation
  • Device operations tracking
  • IP Telephony monitoring
  • Connection status and traffic monitoring
  • Immediate alerts and event notification
  • Documentation
  • Configuration archive

Network Assistant is a desktop-based network management tool optimized for LANs and WLANS for expanding businesses that have as many as 40 Cisco switches and routers. By running Smartports technology, the application simplifies setup, installation, and ongoing management and support of Cisco-powered environments. The application provides a centralized network view and permits network managers to employ its functions across switches, routers, and access points.

Cisco Security Manager is a feature-rich but easy-to-use solution for centrally provisioning all aspects of device configuration and policies for Cisco firewalls, virtual private networks, and IPS. Security Manager effectively handles even small networks consisting of fewer than ten devices, but also expands to manage enterprise networks composed of thousands of appliances. Expansion is enabled via intelligent policy-driven management techniques that can streamline administration. Highlights of Cisco Security Manager are:

  • Allows provisioning for Cisco routers configured with an IOS security software image, Cisco ASA 5500 firewalls, PIX security appliances, IPS 4200 family inline security appliances, and Cisco Catalyst 6500 Series security modules
  • Reacts faster. more rapidly to threats: define and assign new security policies to many hundreds of appliances in a few simple steps
  • Intuitive GUI provides superior ease-of-use
  • Multiple views that offer versatile methods to control devices and security policies including the option to manage the security network graphically on a system topology image
  • Comprehensive video help for the new user to reduce training time
  • Centrally specify which policies are common and inherited by new appliances to make sure company-wide policies are implemented consistently, at the same time offering sufficient versatility to modify policies at the individual device level
  • Ability to build a common rule table for all Cisco platforms with intelligent analysis of firewall policies to determine conflicts in the rule base
  • Easily set up location-to-location, hub-spoke, full mesh, or extranet VPN connections by means of a few mouse clicks
  • Compatibility with Cisco Access Control Server (ACS) for granular role based connection control to appliances and management functions
  • Operation with security MARS system to compare events against corresponding firewall rules to promote quicker decision making and enhanced network availability
  • Ability to allocate particular tasks to every administrator in the course of the implementation of a rule, with formal change control and tracking; permits the security and systems operations team to work cooperatively as a single group with efficient coordination
How Progent's Cisco Certified Experts Can Assist Your Business with Network Management
Progent's Cisco-Certified network consultants can assist you to use Cisco's network management utilities in combination with a selection of effective open source and proprietary applications to develop a comprehensive network management strategy to keep your network functioning smoothly, consolidate valuable resources, protect your data, recover quickly from hardware breakdowns or deliberates assaults, and enable you to expand or repurpose network hardware effectively and affordably as your organization grows.

Progent can also help you to utilize network management applications to analyze and classify network data to enable traffic shaping, which allows you to set up routers to enforce a variety of throughput constraints on certain types of activity according to the priorities you specify. By storing and sorting data packets above your contracted rates, and by assigning preference to the most important processes, traffic shaping can keep service provider excess usage charges from spiraling out of control and/or eliminate lost worker productivity caused by indiscriminate policing of your network traffic volume restrictions during peak demand.

Progent's CISM, CISSP, and ISSAP security consultants can show you how to create a comprehensive security strategy that encompasses your network management processes, and Progent's remote and on-premises network specialists and Cisco CCIE-certified engineers can utilize advanced network monitoring and analysis technology to isolate and repair problems rapidly to keep your network in business.

For more details concerning Progent's professional assistance for Cisco products, choose a subject:

If you wish to get in touch with Progent about engineering assistance for Cisco products, call 1-800-993-9400 or go to Contact Progent.

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