Monitoring and Reporting on Cisco CBQoS
What is CBQoS?
CBQoS (Class Based Quality of Service) is a Cisco feature set that is part of the IOS 12.4(4)T and above. This provides information about the QoS policies applied and class based traffic patterns within an enterprise's network.
Why do you need it?
A network manager’s top priority is to ensure that the business critical applications get the optimum priority. Typically, networks operate on the basis of best-effort delivery, in which all traffic has equal priority and an equal chance of being delivered. When congestion results, all traffic has an equal chance of being dropped. Or, in case a particular traffic is to be prioritized, appropriate QoS policies can be applied as per the requirement.
Network administrators implement QoS policies to ensure that their business-critical applications receive the highest priority on the network. CBQoS can make network performance more predictable and bandwidth utilization more effective. CBQoS monitoring provides you in-depth visibility into the policies applied on your links and the traffic patterns in your various class of traffic.
How can NetFlow Analyzer help you?
ManageEngine NetFlow Analyzer supports Cisco CBQoS and thus reports on the QoS policies that you have deployed. The report shows the pre-policy, post-policy and drops in different traffic class along with the queuing. CBQoS monitoring in such a deep level helps you validate the QoS policies. You can change your policies according to the reports, which you see in NetFlow Analyzer. This is a tool, which can be best used for QoS policy validation.
Use Case for CBQoS Reporting
A leading telecom company was catering business communication solutions to hundreds of Enterprises worldwide. As a vendor of a major business function, their presence was truly global and they had more than over a lakh employees working in offices located in every continent and in 16 countries. The company had a strict policy on customer service & any client issue was taken very seriously.
There were a lot of support engineers who accessed the central database frequently on their basis of interaction with the customers. Since, they provided round the clock technical support, they had to keep dumping more and more data into the central database. Their Enterprise network was their backbone and they had to rely on it for anything and everything while interacting with a customer.
At one particular location, there was a peculiar problem. Between 1 PM and 3 PM, the access to the database became really difficult. There was sluggishness and the screen would often freeze for many minutes which would put the technical support engineers in a very difficult situation especially the ones on calls with irate customers.
The Networking team was worried as they could not figure out the reason for the sluggishness during those specific hours alone. As he began to observe the problem persisting, he called up the Internet Service Provider to check if they were allocated the promised bandwidth. But, there was no problem with the ISP. So, they knew that the problem had to be internal.
This led to them looking out for tools that would tell them what was going on in their network. To get more visibility into their network, they opted for ManageEngine NetFlow Analyzer as they were planning to monitor selected critical interfaces. Since, they were not planning to invest anything that they were not sure of buying, the 30-day trial seemed to be another very good reason to choose NetFlow Analyzer.
When they monitored their network, they were surprised to find that, a lot of employees streaming videos and music during lunchtime. Another group of employees were relaxing themselves with a game of Farmville during those hours and it was identified using the reports from NetFlow Analyzer.
As obvious as it is, the Networking team decided to ensure maximum priority to the business critical applications like database, CRM and VoIP. They could not simply afford to lose out on their quality of service with these critical applications while bandwidth was eaten up by recreational items like Farmville and video streaming sites.
Their CBQoS policies were reset with immediate effect and the employees were requested to refrain from gaming and streaming anything not pertaining to business, during working hours. The effectiveness of their policies was also measured through NetFlow Analyzer's CBQoS reports. This resetting of policies had a great impact on the network. The access to the database was much faster and they were able to assist their customers quickly. The problem was no longer there.
Thus, the network administrator was able to find a very effective solution in order to ensure that your productive business enhancing applications receive maximum priority in your network.
NetFlow Analyzer is a NetFlow, sFlow, JFLow (and more) collector and analyzing engine integrated together. NetFlow analyzer does not require any hardware probes and can be downloaded, used in your network environment and can be evaluated for 30 days. Go through the following useful links for better understanding of how NetFlow Analyzer can help you in understanding your network traffic and bandwidth utilization.
"NetFlow Analyzer has helped us reduce the time taken to isolate and
Fred Hassard, Sr. Network Engineer, Adventist Health