A wealth of network management tools from Cisco and other suppliers underscores the importance and difficulty of maintaining networks. Progent's Cisco-certified network management consultants are expert at assisting companies design management solutions based on SNMP, Syslog, and Cisco IOS NetFlow to create powerful tools for understanding network utilization and latency, viewing key router and switch performance metrics, and recognizing traffic patterns, applications, and devices that use network resources.
Progent can help businesses to utilize a broad selection of free and proprietary management products to maintain Cisco infrastructure. Utilities used by Progent's engineers include MRTG, Nagios, PRTG, Cisco Cisco Adaptive Security Device Manager, Cisco Network Assistant, Cisco Security Manager, OpenView, AlterPoint DeviceAuthority, Adventnet Netflow and Firewall Analyzer, Solarwinds Orion, and NetMRI.
Network management platforms can allow organizations to understand current network utilization and effectively plan for downstream capacity expansion. Management tools can also be used to highlight inefficient or inappropriate uses of system services, for example streaming video, peer-to-peer file exchange, etc. that can use up valuable and limited network resources. A carefully planned network management plan can also help organizations to make intelligent choices on wide and local area network upgrades once they understand how much network resources really needed at various times.
Putting an effective network management system in place in advance is critical to avoid severe disruptions that can be due to Denial Of Service attacks and dangerous viruses. These events can render the network unusable and without appropriate utilities it can be time consuming, if not virtually impossible, to discover the source of the problem.
Network Management Solutions from Cisco
Cisco has developed an assortment of powerful utilities that should form the basis for any network management strategy. Utilized in combination with the top third-party tools, Cisco's network management offerings can enhance the competitive value of network infrastructures for companies of any size by addressing key areas such as resource utilization, throughput, resilience, protection, repair, and capacity planning. Cisco's top network management tools include:
Cisco ASDM is a browser-based utility that lets you set up and operate the software on network appliances. Cisco ASDM is loaded by the network appliance, and allows you to set up, track, and control the device.
Monitor Manager is a management and monitoring application designed to address the requirements of small and midsize businesses. Cisco Monitor Manager continuously monitors key appliance processes on voice/data networks used by five to 250 workers and with up to 250 IP phones. Monitor Manager provides:
Cisco Monitor Manager scans the system on a round-the-clock basis and periodically polls and gathers identification and operations-monitoring information from the monitored appliances in the system. Monitor Manager is a Windows-based utility and is completely invisible to system processes and does not use any agent on managed appliances. The application provides a rich set of valuable features and benefits including:
- Real-time tracking of important appliance parameters on small and midsize business-class routers, switches, and voice gateways, Unified Communications Manager Express, Cisco Unity Express, security devices, wireless access points, and IP phones
- Support for the Unified Communications 500 appliance for organizations with as many as 50 workers
- Network discovery and topology
- Device and process views of Cisco Unified Communications deployment
- Networkwide inventory logging and documentation
- Highly secure and reliable communication
- Device performance monitoring
- VoIP Telephony monitoring
- Interface status and data traffic tracking
- Real-time alerts and notices
- Setup archive
Network Assistant is a desktop-hosted management tool designed for for wired and wireless LANs (WLANs) for growing organizations that have up to 40 Cisco switches and routers. By running Cisco's Smartports technology, Network Assistant streamlines configuration, deployment, and ongoing administration and support of Cisco-powered environments. Cisco Network Assistant provides a unified system view and permits IT managers to deploy its functions across switches, routers, and wireless access points.
Cisco Security Manager is a feature-rich but simple to operate application for centrally provisioning all aspects of appliance configuration and policies for firewalls, virtual private networks, and Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS). The solution effectively manages even small environments with fewer than ten devices, but also scales to manage enterprise networks composed of thousands of appliances. Scalability is enabled through smart policy-driven control procedures that can simplify administration. Highlights of Security Manager include:
How Progent's Cisco Certified Experts Can Assist Your Business with Network Management
- Allows control of Cisco routers configured with a Cisco IOS security image, Cisco ASA 5500 Series adaptive security appliances, Cisco PIX firewalls, Cisco IPS 4200 Series sensors, and Catalyst 6500 security services modules
- Respond faster. more rapidly to attacks: specify and assign new security policies to thousands of appliances in just a few steps
- Intuitive GUI provides superior ease-of-use
- A variety of views that provide flexible methods to manage devices and policies including the capability to administer the security environment visually on a system topology map
- Comprehensive video help for the novice operator to reduce learning time
- Globally call out which policies are common and inherited by new appliances to make sure corporate policies are configured regularly, at the same time providing sufficient versatility to modify policies at the individual appliance level
- Capability to build a single firewall rule table for Cisco platforms with smart analysis of firewall policies to detect anomalies within the rule base
- Quickly set up site-to-site, hub-and-spoke, full-mesh IPsec, or extranet Virtual Private Network interfaces with a VPN wizard
- Integration with Cisco ACS for granular role based access management to devices and management services
- Operation with Cisco security MARS to associate monitored data against related firewall rules to support faster management decisions and increased system availability
- Ability to allocate particular tasks to each manager during the implementation of a rule, with formal change management and tracking; allows the security and systems operations team to work in sync as a cohesive unit with effective coordination
Progent's Cisco-qualified network engineers can show you how to utilize Cisco's management tools alongside a variety of effective third-party programs to create a comprehensive management strategy to keep your network running dependably, consolidate valuable resources, protect your data, recover quickly from hardware failure or malicious attacks, and enable you to expand or repurpose network hardware effectively and economically as your company grows.
Progent can also help you to utilize network management tools to analyze and categorize system data to implement traffic shaping, which allows you to set up routers to enforce a variety of bandwidth constraints on designated classes of activity according to the priorities you assign. By buffering and queuing excess packets that exceed your committed volume, and by giving priority to business-critical processes, traffic shaping can keep ISP excess usage charges from spiraling out of control and/or eliminate lost productivity caused by brute force enforcement of your network traffic volume restrictions during peak use.
Progent's CISM and CISSP security professionals can help you to create an end-to-end security strategy that encompasses your network management solution, and Progent's remote and in person support specialists and Cisco CCIE-certified consultants can use the latest network monitoring and analysis technology to isolate and remediate problems quickly to keep your network productive.
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If you wish to get in touch with Progent about engineering help for Cisco networking, phone 1-800-993-9400 or go to Contact Progent.