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The ins and outs of network management

The product manager of network monitoring vendor Ipswitch addresses the usefulness of network monitoring for companies of all sizes and to maintain network efficiency.

With Greg Paul, product manager, Ipswitch Inc., a vendor that develops and sells file transfer, network management and messaging software solutions.

Question: At many organizations, network monitoring falls under the security domain. What are some of the ways monitoring can be useful to maintain network efficiency and even enhance business intelligence?

Paul: We have noted the trend in the IT market of the traditional IT staff taking on additional responsibilities for managing the security infrastructure, which was previously done by dedicated security staff. Proper network monitoring techniques can be a layer in a company's overall security strategy. Using the right monitoring tool can lead to better BI by providing the business with comprehensive reports and up-to-the-minute status information on all the elements of the combined IT and security infrastructure.

Question: Your flagship monitoring system is called WhatsUp. What are some of the benefits of the system that are not found anywhere else?

Paul: WhatsUp was designed with the simple goal of being the easiest tool in its class; easy to install, easy to configure and easy to own on a day-to-day basis. IT staffs use WhatsUp to watch over the things that matter most to them, even in divisions of enterprise-size companies that have deployed traditional enterprise-class monitoring frameworks for the corporate network.

Question: What do you say to many small businesses that might not consider monitoring a priority because their networks are fairly simple?

Paul: Today, every business, no matter the size, needs to communicate with the outside world via email and the Web. Most businesses rely on their network (routers, switches and so on), application servers and file servers to run the business. If one of these crucial elements has a problem, it's better to know about it before it stops your business from doing business.

This 3 Questions originally appeared in a weekly report from IT Business Edge.

This was last published in September 2006

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