WhatsUp Gold: Daily Network Monitor Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘ unified communication ’

By Erin Hayes

Ever wonder how other IT professionals use WhatsUp Gold?

Marston’s, Britain’s largest brewer of cask beer, has a cool use-case story. The brewers were interested in growing their business to become known for more than great beer and pubs. They wanted their evolving clientele to know them for also providing a fun public WiFi hotspot and the place to play the latest internet-connect gaming products.

In order to do this they needed to not only enhance both front of house and back-office infrastructure but also improve communications and reliability of connection between the individual pubs and head office so they could start offering these new services to clients.

To achieve this, Marston’s took on the ambitious and innovative step of moving into the telecoms industry in its own right, allowing it to package and deploy its own customized services to various parts of the business.

But creating its own broadband network and taking responsibility for the infrastructure of its 500+ managed pubs meant that Marston’s needed to invest in a scalable networking monitoring solution to provide visibility across the new telecoms network and to help identify problems with hardware and connectivity.

Luckily, their partner, Level 8 Solutions, stepped in and recommended Ipswitch’s WhatsUp Gold.

This wasn’t Marston’s first experience with WhatsUp Gold. They’d been using within their head office for several years. They then deployed a separate WhatsUp Gold installation to monitor routers and WiFi hotspots installed at its managed pubs, as well as to support home workers also served by Marston’s Telecom.

“Using Ipswitch WhatsUp Gold, we are able to monitor the remote infrastructure installed at our estate of managed pubs across the country, ensuring that equipment is functioning correctly and that the connectivity we are providing through Marston’s Telecom is also performing as expected,” McMinn explained.

Plus sides to using WhatsUp Gold over other products like HP Insight were WhatsUp Gold’s clear and easy to follow feedback on the state of the network and the devices connected to it; its single point of view over the health of the network being monitored; and the clear visual guidance when a device encounters a problem.

As in . . . Green is Good, Red is Bad.

If you’re interested in reading the full Case Study click here.

So what about you? Do you use WhatsUp Gold to monitor something even more interesting that beer? If you do, let us know about it in the comments!

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By Ennio Carboni

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As President of Ipswitch Inc.’s Network Management division I have had the opportunity to speak with many of our customers about their experience using WhatsUp Gold.

Now, because WhatsUp Gold can be deployed and utilized in a variety of ways, each new story I hear varies from the last. But I have noticed a few common themes over the years. One such theme sounds like this:

“The phones stopped ringing as soon as it was deployed on the network.”

In fact, a few weeks ago I had a new customer call up our sales team and rave about the silence he and his team have enjoyed since they implemented WhatsUp Gold on their network. No more phone calls about the network being slow, that this server is down, that the Internet isn’t connecting, etc.

Because of the powerful systems and performance monitoring WhatsUp Gold delivers, these guys are finally the first to know when something is wrong on their network. They can now fix an issue before it affects their users.careerbuilderweb

This latest customer interaction reminded me of our history with job-search-giant, CareerBuilder. As a longtime user of WhatsUp Gold solutions, our product has literally grown along with CareerBuilder’s company.

In its early stages in 2003, at a point when the job search site was just one-fifth the size of the market leader, they brought in WhatsGold to solve their basic monitoring needs. As they’ve grown and matured, becoming the nation’s largest online job site, WhatsUp Gold has stayed a step ahead to continue to provide them the tool-set and functionality they need to manage a network that now includes close to 1300 devices.

Despite the evolution of technology and the increasing complexity of networks and managing solutions, we know that with most of our customers it is still the little things that make such a big difference. Mark Fouraker, Technologist at CareerBuilder, touches on just that in a favorite quote of mine from this customer story:

“My favorite story about WhatsUp Gold is when I was in an important meeting and was getting silent alerts on my pager about an impending issue on our network. I was sneaking out at breaks to troubleshoot and address the matter, eventually resolving it. The bottom line is that no one outside of a few people in operations had any idea there was even an issue at all. It’s just a beautiful product.”

A story like this is really powerful, in my opinion, because it shows how technology can evolve and customer needs can change, forcing us to continually adapt and innovate our product to meet those changing needs. It also shows that business relationships can certainly last as long as it remains mutually beneficial, with a bit of give and take from both sides.

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By Erin Hayes

Join Our 14.2 and WhatsVirtual TTP

Ipswitch’s network management division takes pride in developing software that keeps our users on the cutting edge of industry standards. You need a network management solution that will continue to evolve as the industry evolves.

The latest product we’ve been developing, WhatsVirtual, is an answer to the growing industry trend toward virtualization. It is now essential for IT professionals to have a tool that allows them to effectively monitor and manage their virtualized environments.

Join our WhatsVirtual Technical Preview Program and be the first to give us feedback on this new tool. We view our TPP participants as an integral part of WhatsUp Gold’s product developement.
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The success of WhatsUp Gold’s Traffic Analysis tool late last year was without doubt due in part to your feedback and participation in our Flow Publisher TPP.

Netflow ScreenFlow Publisher is a lightweight complement to WhatsUp Gold Flow Monitor (Flow Monitor provides detailed insight into how your network bandwidth is utilized by collecting NetFlow, sFlow and J-Flow data) designed for those networks that don’t support flow data.

So cross Budget For Costly Upgrades and New Hardware off your To Do List: Flow Publisher; enables flow monitoring for every network segment and for every device whether or not they natively support flow monitoring. Flow Publisher captures raw network traffic and converts it into standard NetFlow records.

Here’s a quick 101 of network traffic analysis terms you should be familiar with in order to effectively get a handle on your network’s performance

* Top Offenders: The top offenders are those users, applications or hosts that are consuming your network bandwidth.
* BitTorrent: This is a peer-to-peer file sharing protocol used for distributing large amounts of data, which allows large files to be downloaded without affecting the performance of the network.
* WAN Data Traffic: This refers to traffic slowing down the performance of the wireless environments, usually consisting of FTP or copying files between sites.
* Security: Proper network traffic and performance monitoring allows you to detect DOS attacks and other rogue activity directed at your network.

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By Peter Christensen

In an earlier entry, Back into the Fray, I listed what has changed and has not changed after I left enterprise networking and I joined Ipswitch. One of the items that changed was VoIP. VoIP seems to have fallen under what is now termed unified communications.

Both Microsoft and Cisco have staked places at the unified communications table. But what does unified communications really mean. Is it VoIP? Is it IM? Is it collaboration? Is it email? Or is it all of these things melded into one?

What ever it is, it means only one thing to network managers. How much effort is it going to take to manage?

From this one question we can deduce a number of other implications to an already saturated infrastructure and the ability to manage yet another cool technology someone just had to have.

If it is server centric, read Microsoft, this means more server focused hardware to manage. How will this server based infrastructure be managed? Not only is there additional server hardware to manage, but also license management (read CALs) to ensure EULA compliance. 4000 IP phones, means 4000 CALs, unless Microsoft is changing their licensing model.

Or networking gear centric, read Cisco, this fits nicely with most existing installed infrastructures and most of the management capabilities are already in place.

QoS management for VoIP is key to the whole effort of unified communications, QoS is network centric not server centric.

I’m not trying to take a slanted view of one company over another, just what make sense for an organization. If it was a network that I was responsible for, I would choose the network centric approach over the application centric approach every time.

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