Monitoring your devices in the underlying network infrastructure is vital to maintain network up-time. The daily routine for administrators is to anticipate potential network issues that might bring business services down, anytime. But how can they be proactive and find issues that can cause a downtime? Today, we will discuss why it is important to take a step back, and have a macro view of monitoring network devices by understanding how customizable views for devices, network grouping and dashboards can help us focus on what really matters to the business. Any organization with a huge network environment is bound to receive large amounts of information on the status of devices, interfaces, connectivity, etc. Finding the root cause of the problem will be difficult with all those events constantly pestering you if you do not have network grouping already implemented.

 

Shown below is an issue of an Outlook application not responding properly. This is a business service failure. Only if you have set up alerts to notify you from different parts of your IT infrastructure - could be your network or your application server, etc - you'll be able isolate the right cause of the issue for faster troubleshotting

 

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Why Grouping is Necessary?

By including all of your network components and adding new devices to your database as they are discovered, you will be able to monitor, alert, and report on the network as a unit and thus ensure optimal service delivery. Going one step further, grouping will give you the benefit of classifying those network devices based on commonalities or dependencies. Grouping allows you to:

  • Organize devices, interfaces, and servers into groups. This helps network administrators to roll up service level status across business and constantly monitor critical processes.
  • Group objects by department, business center or geography to analyze the impact of network issues.
  • Prevent multiple alerts on the same issue and help administrators identify the root cause of the problem.

 

For instance, if a router or switch is down at a particular location, dynamic grouping helps network administrators quickly analyze the impact of the issue by aggregating the views. Without grouping, they have to go through the hassle of manual process which risks their business services going down. Setting up dependencies will establish parent-child relationship in a group, which in turn reduces the number of alerts by pinpointing the problem immediately. This helps you find the root cause of the problem.

 

How Customized Network Views Can Help You

Complex networks can be a headache if network administrators do not understand how they impact business critical applications and services. When issues arise, faster response & time-to-resolution can be achieved if administrators customize resource views to meet their specific network environment. You can ease network troubleshooting by:

  • Looking for Top 10 users and applications – Monitoring users/applications who hog most of the bandwidth will help administrators to keep the lid on consumption and maintain business critical processes.
  • Managing by exception and thresholds – Customize network views by creating exceptions. This helps you focus on issues that result from exceeding predefined thresholds. For instance, a sudden increase in third party application traffic can cause a disruption in VoIP calls. This can be avoided if you have a customized view for tracking application traffic.
  • Dashboard – A single window view can help you monitor all the devices, events, etc. It helps administrators resolve issues even before they are escalated.

 

A robust network monitoring tool will provide you with a good choice of customizable views, grouping and dashboards to simplify network troubleshooting. With SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor, you can group your devices, customize and view data in graphs, tables, maps and top 10 lists with an easy to use web interface. You can download the fully functional 30 day free trial or checkout our product demo.

 

Watch this video to learn more about IT infrastructure monitoring and the impact on your business service.