Any network performance gurus here?

binarysoulbinarysoul Posts: 993Member
I recently got a new job as a network specialist responsible for managing performance across both LANs and WAN. I'm just wondering if few folks who have managed large networks give me some feedback as to what I should focus the most. I'm reading and reviewing my networking stuff, but certainly could use some insight.

It's a heterogenious and complex environment. Of course, they won't throw me in fire and the transition is gradual (at least I hope :) ), but I just want to get some ideas

Comments

  • SRTMCSESRTMCSE Posts: 249Member
    binarysoul wrote:
    It's a heterogenious and complex environment. Of course, they won't throw me in fire and the transition is gradual (at least I hope :) ), but I just want to get some ideas

    Prepare like they're going to throw you immediately. I thought the same thing but after 2 weeks (all of which was operational orientation and required) I was supporting pretty much the entire network. A lot of on the job learning. I would have preferred a little more time to get aclimated but I think any slower and I wouldn't have been forced to learn as fast as I did.
  • silentc1015silentc1015 Posts: 128Member
    binarysoul wrote:
    I recently got a new job as a network specialist responsible for managing performance across both LANs and WAN. I'm just wondering if few folks who have managed large networks give me some feedback as to what I should focus the most. I'm reading and reviewing my networking stuff, but certainly could use some insight.

    It's a heterogenious and complex environment. Of course, they won't throw me in fire and the transition is gradual (at least I hope :) ), but I just want to get some ideas

    Look into SNMP. I'm sure some of your network devices have snmp capabilities. Look into some projects that show graphical representations of what is happening on your network. MRTG is one such project. I managed the performance of a network of 40,000 users at a regional ISP with SNMP & MRTG.
  • binarysoulbinarysoul Posts: 993Member
    I know the basics of SNMP, but not as much as to analyze the performance of a large network. Can someone point out which specifics things I should know about it. They showed me some diagrams and it seems very ovewhelming icon_sad.gif I'm reading and reading a lot and also do practical stuff. So, in short what should I know about SNMP.
  • silentc1015silentc1015 Posts: 128Member
    binarysoul wrote:
    I know the basics of SNMP, but not as much as to analyze the performance of a large network. Can someone point out which specifics things I should know about it. They showed me some diagrams and it seems very ovewhelming icon_sad.gif I'm reading and reading a lot and also do practical stuff. So, in short what should I know about SNMP.

    I'm sure there are some good articles out there if you just google it. I was given the project of network monitoring and found MRTG to be our best solution. I dove into it head-first, and that's how I got started. The learning curve was very steep. You could start by ensuring that some of your network equipment has SNMP enabled, then download and use some snmpclients to query some of the values. This might give you an idea of what it's capable of.
  • garv221garv221 Posts: 1,914Member
    Get familiar with a Sniffer and learn avout delta times and round-trip time RTT.

    Get a program like MRTG so you can see what is up and what is down, when and for how long - wait, have them buy you PRTG.

    What are you using now? I know Solar Winds is nice... and rocks... but you did not say if you have cash.

    First things first fix speed and duplex issues. If you are experiencing CRC's -find out why - whatever it takes and resolve them.

    Get a Packeteer even if it is a demo.

    Get some Fluke Hardware - even if it is only demo...

    Draw diagrams if you do not have them.

    Learn to characterize what is on your network.

    Find every server and make each admin tell you what ports are in use.

    Find the Firewall admin and find out what it going where and why.

    Get the Network Admin / Engineer and get rules wrote to match what the SysAdmin and the FWAdmin told you.

    Get with management to get some teeth.

    Stress policy - if there is none make it a point.

    Baseline everything - before and after.

    Backup everything - before and after.

    Always be willing and ABLE to roll back.

    Read design books and articles.

    For heaven's sake - BASELINE - know what it right and what is wrong.

    Do not be afraid to set thresholds on ICMP, Multicast, BRoadcast traffic.

    Learn why Static ARP can be a good thing.

    Learn what a jumbo and runt is and everything in between.

    Oh yes, DHCP, DNS, WINS, LDAP, NTP etc...

    Make sure they work 100% as advertised... they could be performance issues and everyone is too proud to admit their DNS/WINS is broken...

    Did I tell you to get a Syslog server yet... Let your equipment complain to you - it will.

    Did I forget about an NMS SNMP-based Alerting System?

    Let me know when you plow through this, I'm sure I got book-loads more... that you ever wanted to know...

    :)

    2nd that. Packeteers are sweet. Also look into Wild Packets
  • binarysoulbinarysoul Posts: 993Member
    2nd that. Packeteers are sweet. Also look into Wild Packets

    Are you talking about Packetshaper products available from packeteer.com?
  • garv221garv221 Posts: 1,914Member
    binarysoul wrote:
    2nd that. Packeteers are sweet. Also look into Wild Packets

    Are you talking about Packetshaper products available from packeteer.com?

    yes
  • RTmarcRTmarc Posts: 1,082Member
    SolarWinds ftw!
Sign In or Register to comment.