Network Testing Tools
What are network testing tools?
Network testing tools are a collection of tools that aid in measuring the performance of various aspects of a network. These tools range from ping, SNMP ping, traceroute to WMI query tool and more. Network testing tools help network admins make quick and informed decisions.
Why are network testing tools important?
The elemental purpose of a network is to share resources efficiently. It is crucial to establish periodic network testing with reliable network testing tools to:
- Understand the network's state
- Ensure the configuration changes work as expected
- Detect crippling network attacks
- Provide a top-notch end-user experience
Challenges faced by an IT admin
Even in a relatively small networking environment:
- Network tests are grueling for a network admin as they demand a substantial amount of resources and manual effort.
- If multiple networking testing tools are employed, the tools have to be launched and stopped individually to perform each network test, which demands ample time.
- The network testing tools require a certain level of management such as allocating storage, clearing cache, starting and stopping necessary services, and ensuring open ports. The management of multiple tools in itself becomes an intimidating task.
OpManager: All-in-one network testing tool
ManageEngine OpManager is an easy-to-use, comprehensive network testing software designed for all networks. OpManager provides a complete set of network test tools that delivers accurate and fast results in real time. It also automates network tests, thereby reducing resource usage and saving valuable time.
Network performance testing with OpManager
OpManager monitors physical and virtual servers, interfaces, switches, routers, firewalls, and any networking device in real time for over 200 parameters. It has more than 100 prebuilt reports that provide critical insights into your network performance, supports over 53,000 multi-vendor devices, and offers more than 10,000 device templates for effortless monitoring.
- Device availability testing: Ensure all the physical/virtual connections are spot on
- Ping: A ping (Packet InterNet Groper) works on Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) by transmitting packets. OpManager sends an ICMP echo message to the target device. When the target device sends an ICMP echo response, the device is active and responding. You can test the availability of all your servers, switches, routers, firewalls, and networking devices using OpManager.
- SNMP Ping: With OpManager, you can test if SNMP is enabled in the networking device by retrieving management information base (MIB) values. It also collects information from the target device such as DNS name, System Name, Location, System Type, and System Description.
- Proxy Ping: A proxy works on a higher layer of the TCP/IP network model, where there is no direct access to the IP. Proxy Ping is used to ping a target device using a Cisco router. The router acts as the proxy for the target device and responds to the ping request, and the status of the destination device is acquired.
- Service and process testing
After testing the servers for availability, it is essential to test the availability of services and processes in the servers. Service and process testing identify possible roadblocks for end users accessing applications on the server and for sharing resources in your network. This is a more balanced server testing plan. OpManager tests the availability of services such as DNS, IMAP, POP, FTP, HTTPS, and Windows services along with the processes running in any number of servers in your IT infrastructure. OpManager also offers Windows network testing tools such as WMI query tool that helps execute custom WMI queries.
- URL testing: Even with all its servers, services, and processes running coherently, a website can fail to work for the end user. It is imperative to test the URLs that bring in valuable traffic. With OpManager, you can test the URLs for availability. OpManager also searches for key text on the web page and alerts you if the specified text is not found. This way, you can easily detect attacks on your website.
- Traceroute - Detect network attacks: With traceroute, you can identify a malicious attacker who might be redirecting your traffic by manipulating routing standards. This can be tested with the help of hop counts. When the hop count exceeds the usual value, there is a possibility of a potential network attack.
Workflows - Powerful automations from OpManager: Automate routine and laborious network testing with OpManager's workflows. Workflows let the users define conditions, variables, and actions for performing tasks. You can create a workflow to test the availability of devices and schedule the workflow for any or all of the devices in your network. Based on the Ping result, you can execute multiple actions automatically. The commands include:
- Restarting servers, and starting, stopping and resuming services
- Escalating device failure messages
- Logging trouble tickets
- Pushing configurations to devices
- Notifying through SMS, email, Slack channels, and more
Apart from these tests on gauging the network's state, IT admins need complete visibility into network operations and need to receive real-time alerts, because there's nothing worse than learning that the network is down from an end user. Therefore monitoring your network performance and receiving alerts before outages occur is a more balanced IT infrastructure management plan. This is possible only with the help of network performance test tools. However, it is better and easier to manage if all the tools are consolidated into a single network performance testing software.Once the network performance is gauged, troubleshooting network issues (if any) will be the next part. OpManager also makes network troubleshooting easy.
Network performance testing tools:
OpManager's network performance testing tool set includes:
- CPU monitor
- Memory monitor
- Interface monitor
- CPU temperature monitor
- Bandwidth monitor
- Virtual server monitor
- Storage device monitor
- DHCP scope monitor
- Process monitor
- Service monitor
- SNMP trap monitor
- Switch port monitor
Additionally, OpManager visualizes data in the form of populated graphs, and charts that provide rich analytics into network performance (up to one-minute granularity).
What is network testing?
Network testing is a process that is used to quantitatively or qualitatively measure the performance of an IT infrastructure. It is a primitive level of fault identification that does not require tons of historical data. For more advanced monitoring, network monitoring tools are used.