As mentioned in previous posts Part I and Part II, I want to now continue to go a little deeper into a few of the steps outlined in brad.hale's great white paper, "How to Create the Ultimate Network Management Dashboard", that we've got up on our SolarWinds Resource Center. As a review, brad.hale's white paper gives a brief rundown of the steps required to get a network management dashboard using SolarWinds NPM up and running, and, in this post, I want, specifically, to go over the steps of discovering and logically organizing your network.


Network Discovery and Organization

You already know you've got a bunch of stuff out there. How do you get it into your web console, and how do you organize all that beautiful data?


Discovering your Network

The third step in brad.hale's white paper reads as follows:

Step 3
Name network devices logically; and then group and sort by custom properties such as location, business units, device manufacturer, etc.

It's not mentioned here that you need to discover your network first. Fortunately, network discovery in SolarWinds NPM is a largely automated process, so, you've more than likely already completed it. If you haven't, we've got a video and documentation that guide you through the process.


Organizing your Network

As in any great endeavor--like this one--having a plan beforehand is a good idea, and having the tools to execute your plan is absolutely essential. In another previous post, I covered both planning and the tools SolarWinds gives you to execute your network organization plan, namely custom properties, dependencies, and groups. Take a look at "Network Organization: It's More than Racks and Stacks", and then look through the following documents for more detailed information:


Stay tuned. Next time I'll be back, bearing pretty colors and fancy lines, to go over ways you can visualize your network.