End-User Monitoring is Displacing SNMP
August 29, 2016

Panos Vouzis
NetBeez

Share this

The cloud revolution has affected all facets of the IT realm, including network and application monitoring. SNMP monitoring gives us the status of our devices, but doesn’t capture the end-user experience. We need to know what users experience regardless of what device, network and ISP connects them to cloud applications.

On-premise hardware is being eliminated one router and one switch at a time. Since 2015, we have been seeing security-sensitive sectors migrating infrastructure from private to public cloud providers. The less hardware under management, the less important SNMP monitoring is.

In the not so distant future, the only hardware that will exist on-premise will be an edge device managed over the cloud. This will reduce the amount of hardware remaining under IT’s management. Overall complexity won’t go away, though, due to the number and gamut of devices connected to the network.

The IoT transformation within our connected world enables everything from personal devices to modern appliances to talk with us, and with each other refrigerators and door locks to talk to us and to each other. Each of these devices might also have its own Internet connection with a specific ISP, further increasing complexity and application dependency.

As applications are moving from private data centers to the cloud, the only sites that will remain under management with visibility and control will be office locations. Additionally, if an employee uses a third party application, the only visibility we have is from the employee's perspective because we don’t manage the cloud infrastructure that hosts the application. Ultimately, SNMP falls short monitoring the end-user experience; can the users use their applications and get their job done?

What are the options available to network administrators?

There are two ways to monitor the user experience: passive traffic capture and active monitoring.

Passive traffic capture

With passive capture we collect and analyze real user traffic. This remains useful if we want to know the in and out of a gateway for forensics and post mortem analysis. However, with hundreds or thousands of users, the amount of data can be overwhelming, requiring high storage capacity to save only a few days’ worth of data. Also, it captures network and application performance data only when there are active users on the network. A typical use case is to scan for top talkers and take measurements to mitigate excessive bandwidth utilization.

Active Monitoring

Active monitoring works by simulating a user on the network by emulating the user behavior. This is accomplished by agents installed exactly where the users are: on the wired or wireless network as clients. This gives the flexibility to test and monitor the network independent to the user behavior. Historical data can be stored for months or years. If a VPN split tunnel fails, you might not know of the incident until a user picks up the phone to open a ticket. With active monitoring you can be notified within seconds.

Real end-user monitoring and passive capture are taking the front seat and IT professionals have started complementing or replacing SNMP with a new generation of monitoring tools. This trend will continue and it will change the landscape of the application performance monitoring arena.

Panos Vouzis is Co-Founder and COO of NetBeez.

Share this

The Latest

July 17, 2019

The 11th anniversary of the Apple App Store frames a momentous time period in how we interact with each other and the services upon which we have come to rely. Even so, we continue to have our in-app mobile experiences marred by poor performance and instability. Apple has done little to help, and other tools provide little to no visibility and benchmarks on which to prioritize our efforts outside of crashes ...

July 16, 2019

Confidence in artificial intelligence (AI) and its ability to enhance network operations is high, but only if the issue of bias is tackled. Service providers (68%) are most concerned about the bias impact of "bad or incomplete data sets," since effective AI requires clean, high quality, unbiased data, according to a new survey of communication service providers ...

July 15, 2019

Every internet connected network needs a visibility platform for traffic monitoring, information security and infrastructure security. To accomplish this, most enterprise networks utilize from four to seven specialized tools on network links in order to monitor, capture and analyze traffic. Connecting tools to live links with TAPs allow network managers to safely see, analyze and protect traffic without compromising network reliability. However, like most networking equipment it's critical that installation and configuration are done properly ...

July 11, 2019

The Democratic presidential debates are likely to have many people switching back-and-forth between live streams over the coming months. This is going to be especially true in the days before and after each debate, which will mean many office networks are likely to see a greater share of their total capacity going to streaming news services than ever before ...

July 10, 2019

Monitoring of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) infrastructures has become a key concern over the last several years. Modern versions of these systems need continual monitoring to stay energy efficient and deliver satisfactory comfort to building occupants. This is because there are a large number of environmental sensors and motorized control systems within HVAC systems. Proper monitoring helps maintain a consistent temperature to reduce energy and maintenance costs for this type of infrastructure ...

July 09, 2019

Shoppers won’t wait for retailers, according to a new research report titled, 2019 Retailer Website Performance Evaluation: Are Retail Websites Meeting Shopper Expectations? from Yottaa ...

June 27, 2019

Customer satisfaction and retention were the top concerns for a majority (58%) of IT leaders when suffering downtime or outages, according to a survey of top IT leaders conducted by AIOps Exchange. The effect of service interruptions on customers outweighed other concerns such as loss of revenue, brand reputation, negative press coverage, or the impact on IT Ops teams.

June 26, 2019

It is inevitable that employee productivity and the quality of customer experiences suffer as a consequence of the poor performance of O365. The quick detection and rapid resolution of problems associated with O365 are top of mind for any organization to keep its business humming ...

June 25, 2019

Employees at British businesses rate computer downtime as the most significant irritant at their current workplace (41 percent) when asked to pick their top three ...

June 24, 2019

The modern enterprise network is an entirely different beast today than the network environments IT and ops teams were tasked with managing just a few years ago. With the rise of SaaS, widespread cloud migration across industries and the trend of enterprise decentralization all playing a part, the challenges IT faces in adapting their management and monitoring techniques continue to mount ...