Being able to do a search for a host name on the portal or an IP address and pulling up all correlated info from NPM would be very useful.
Is this different from just going to the Node Details page loaded with the appropriate resources for syslog, trap, application, netflow, etc.
Yes very different. While it is not possible to have orion observe and collect date from every single device on the network. The IP scanner collects some information from all devices on the network.
Having this information correlated into the same database could have many application benefits.. ie.. Port mapper currently is a great tool for correlating cam table, ip, host, switchport description info which we use extensively for auditing.. The power of the utility is the correlation..
While i was thinking in a much more general implementation such as just integrating the data into the sql database so that if you did a wild card seach data collected via netflow, a monitored node.. or a unmonitored host somewhere on the network.. The search would return the relevent match information.
Beyond that if you wanted to build a module that competes with the likes of cisco works in this area.. since you have the engine to to the cam table, ip, host, interface.. etc lookup. You have a widget that can scan all the hosts.. I cant it would be to hard (reletive to perhaps building a car out of twine) It would seem reasonable you have all the components to build a module that would let you search for any host ip or mac address connected to the network and have it return the connected interface and history.
But thats the big picture..
We use the ip scanner to actively scan our network largely for troubleshooting purposes. When someone tells us x device was working yesterday its a snap to look it up and see that in fact that ip address has been down for 2 weeks.
I have to stop typing now.. lunch is over.. I hope this was helpful