The typical Company of today
In today's fast paced economic setting, companies - be it in the manufacturing domain / retail / telecom, are finding it increasingly important to be nimble.What better way to transform a large mammoth organization to a lean and agile unit than by IT ? Especially with the coming of internet as a principal form of communication and business engagement, companies have been able to cut the costs associated with travel and document transfer. Companies today rely on their corporate network for things as simple as sending payslip statement to conducting remote business meetings over the web. Especially powerful Supply chain management solutions, which are reliant on the internet, make it possible for inventory replenishing in real-time.
Imagine the case of a large company whose sales happen online. Even a few minutes of network outage could mean lost dollars and potential customers.
Against this backdrop, the importance of having the WAN network up and running becomes critical. As a network administrator you have to ensure that your staff and customers are able to access the resources( any URL/Podcast/webcast) at anytime they need - and in a way that the overall bandwidth consumption does not shoot through the roof, resulting in a total network fiasco. You need to have a means of being alerted upon any threshold violations, so that you don't end up monitoring the network activity all the time.
Also a tab on any unwarranted access to unnecessary/objectionable content can be easily had. This in a big way free-up your network for more vital activities. To Illustrate: Blocking all access to downloading music/video content off the web could result in a substantial bandwidth saving for someone wanting to setup a video conferencing session with the client.
A case in Point
A large telecommunication company based in North America that provides a full range of telecommunications products and services including data, Internet protocol (IP), voice and wireless. They provides business value to its clients with innovative communications solutions delivered through a superior end-to-end customer experience. They manage more than 2000 network equipments, including routers, LAN switches, firewalls, application appliances, wireless access points, etc
They wanted to have details on data flow to allow avoidance of unexpected outage during the migration. Besides they did not have a clear visibility into how bandwidth was used in their network and who was using it. So they wanted a reporting system that would let them know the bandwidth usage details on WAN connections as well as at the aggregation points for capacity planning and traffic analysis at per host and per application granularity.
The NetFlow Analyzer as a tool to monitor the network
Cisco NetFlow Technology makes it possible to unravel various vital information about your network health with no additional investment. ManageEngine NetFlow Analyzer, by harnessing the NetFlow data export from Cisco Routers and switches analyzes and reports on vital parameters like who the top talkers are, which applications are consuming the maximum bandwidth, whether there has been any network attack/unscrupulous access attempts, etc.
Armed with this information and with provisions to be pro-actively alerted upon any threshold violations, you can stay relaxed when it comes to your corporate network. You bet !