Cisco Network Management Solutions EngineersAn abundance of network management products from Cisco and third-party suppliers highlights the value and complexity of network management. Progent's seasoned network management engineers are expert at helping companies develop network management solutions utilizing on SNMP, SYSLOG services, and Cisco NetFlow to create powerful mechanisms for tracking network bandwidth usage and network latency, monitoring important router and switch performance metrics, and identifying traffic patterns, processes, and appliances that use available resources.

Progent can assist customers to deploy a broad selection of open source and license-based management utilities to maintain a Cisco-powered environment. Tools familiar to Progent's consultants include MRTG, Nagios, PRTG, Cisco Cisco Adaptive Security Device Manager, Cisco Network Assistant, Cisco Security Manager, OpenView, Wireshark/Ethereal, Concord E-Health, AlterPoint DeviceAuthority, Adventnet Netflow and Firewall Analyzer, Big Brother, and NetMRI.

Network management tools can help organizations to be aware of current system utilization and effectively plan for future capacity expansion. Network management utilities can also be used to detect inefficient or improper uses of system resources, for example streaming video, peer-to-peer file sharing, etc. that can use up valuable and scarce network resources. A well planned network management plan can also assist businesses to make intelligent choices on system upgrades after they appreciate how much network bandwidth historically required at any one time.

Putting an effective network management platform in operation in advance is essential to prevent severe disruptions that can be caused by Denial Of Service (DoS) attacks and dangerous viruses. These assaults can render the network unstable and without proper utilities it can be difficult, and in some cases virtually impossible, to find the location of the trouble.

Network Management Solutions from Cisco
Cisco provides an array of powerful tools that should be the foundation for any network management strategy. Utilized in combination with the top third-party products, Cisco's network management software can enhance the competitive value of networks for organizations of all sizes by helping with important areas such as system utilization, performance, availability, security, troubleshooting, and capacity planning. Cisco's most familiar network management tools include:

Cisco Adaptive Security Device Manager is a browser-based utility that lets you configure and operate the software built into security devices. Adaptive Security Device Manager is installed by the adaptive security device, and enables you to set up, monitor, and control the device.

Cisco Monitor Manager is a management solution developed for the requirements of small and medium-sized organizations. Cisco Monitor Manager continuously checks key device parameters on voice and data environments used by 5 to 250 workers and with as many as 250 Voice over IP phones. Monitor Manager offers:

  • Up-to-date tracking of important appliance parameters on small and midsize business-class routers and switches, Communications Manager Express, Cisco Unity Express, security devices, WAPs, and Cisco Unified IP Phones
  • Compatibility with the Cisco Unified Communications 500 Series for companies with as many as 50 workers
Cisco Monitor Manager scans the system on a round-the-clock 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 utility and is completely nondisruptive to system operations and does not deploy any agent on managed devices. Monitor Manager offers a rich set of valuable features including:
  • Network discovery and topology
  • Physical and service level views of Unified Communications deployment
  • System wide device identification collection and reporting
  • Advanced security and dependable operation
  • Cisco device performance tracking
  • VoIP Telephony monitoring
  • Interface status and traffic tracking
  • Real-time alarms and event notification
  • Reports
  • Setup log

Network Assistant is a desktop-hosted network management tool optimized for LANs and WLANS for growing companies with as many as 40 Cisco switches and routers. By running Cisco's Smartports technology, Cisco Network Assistant streamlines configuration, deployment, and continuing management and maintenance of Cisco networks. The application provides a unified network view and allows network managers to deploy its functions across Cisco switches, routers, and wireless access points.

Security Manager is a powerful but simple to operate solution for managing all aspects of device set up and policies for firewalls, VPNs, and Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS). Cisco Security Manager efficiently manages even small environments with no more than than ten appliances, but also scales to manage enterprise networks composed of thousands of Cisco routers, security appliances, and switch services modules. Expansion is enabled via intelligent policy-based management techniques that can streamline administrative overhead. Highlights of Cisco Security Manager include:

  • Allows control of Cisco routers running a Cisco IOS security image, ASA 5500 family firewalls, Cisco PIX security appliances, Cisco IPS 4200 family inline security appliances, and Catalyst 6500 Series security services modules
  • Respond more quickly to threats: specify and apply updated policies to many hundreds of devices in a few easy steps
  • Rich GUI provides exceptional ease-of-use
  • Multiple looks that offer versatile methods to manage appliances and security policies such as the ability to manage the security environment graphically on a system topology map
  • Comprehensive video training for the new operator to reduce training period
  • Globally call out which policies are shared and inherited by additional devices to make sure corporate policies are implemented consistently, at the same time providing sufficient versatility to modify policies at the local appliance level
  • Ability to build a common rule database for Cisco firewalls with intelligent analysis of firewall policies to detect anomalies within the rule table
  • Quickly configure site-to-site, hub-and-spoke, full mesh, or extranet Virtual Private Network links by means of a few mouse clicks
  • Integration with Cisco ACS for low-level role based connection management to appliances and management functions
  • Operation with security MARS system to correlate events against related security appliance rules to help with quicker decision making and enhanced system up time
  • Capability to allocate specific tasks to each manager during the deployment of a policy, with structured change management and logging; permits the security and network operations staff to act in sync as a cohesive group with effective teamwork
How Progent's Consultants Can Assist Your Business with Network Management Solutions
Progent's Cisco-qualified network consultants can help you to utilize Cisco's management tools in combination with a selection of powerful third-party applications to develop a complete management strategy to keep your network operating dependably, consolidate expensive resources, secure your data, recover rapidly from hardware failure or malicious assaults, and enable you to scale or reassign network hardware intelligently and economically as your business evolves.

Progent can also help you to use network management applications to analyze and classify network data to implement traffic shaping, which allows you to set up routers to impose a variety of throughput constraints on designated types of processes according to the importance you assign. By storing and sorting excess packets above your contracted volume, and by assigning preference to critical processes, traffic shaping can keep service provider overage penalties from spiraling out of reach and/or avoid gaps in productivity resulting from brute force policing of your network traffic volume restrictions during peak demand.

Progent's CISM, CISSP, and ISSAP security consultants can assist you to develop a comprehensive security plan that encompasses your network management processes, and Progent's remote and on-site support specialists and Cisco CCIE-certified consultants can utilize advanced network management technology to isolate and remediate problems rapidly to keep your network productive.

To see more details concerning Progent's engineering assistance for Cisco technology, choose a topic:

In order to contact Progent about consulting assistance for Cisco products, phone 1-800-993-9400 or visit Contact Progent.

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