Nothing in life is free except some tools to help you manage and improve the performance of your Ethernet networks. Here are five we found to do just that:
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1)Free 30-day trial of Riverbed's Cascade Shark Virtual Edition packet analyzer. This software is designed to provide continuous packet capture and long-term storage for real-time and back-in-time forensic analysis and reporting of network and security events. It can run standalone or as a component of Riverbed's Cascade line of network performance management products. Cascade Shark VE records all inter-virtual machine traffic crossing a virtual switch on a VMware ESXi hypervisor.
2) LAN Speed Test is a free utility designed to measure file transfer, hard drive, USB Drive, and wired and wireless LAN speeds. It builds a file in memory, then transfers it both ways while keeping track of the time, and calculates the result. Most tests are less than 1 minute, and the file size is 120KB for Windows and 370KB for Mac. It's compatible with all Windows versions 2000 and up, and will soon be available for Linux.
3) This EtherNet/IP Scanner Software is source code that enables developers of PC-based or embedded products to add scanner functionality to a product's feature set. The software is delivered as a developer's kit, or as dynamic link library for Microsoft Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7 -- 32 and 64 bit. It is offered as royalty-free company site license.
4) Free Intel Ethernet controller drivers can be found here, on SourceForge, an open source community resource owned by Slashdot Media. This e1000 open source project contains Linux kernel drivers for all Intel Ethernet adapters and LAN On Motherboard.
5) Finally, here's a free tool for estimating the amount of bandwidth you use on an Ethernet/IP network. Rockwell's Ethernet/IP Capacity Tool is designed to allow the user to select a platform, add different types of I/O and network devices, and then calculate how many Common Industrial Protocol (CIP) and TCP connections are processed in addition to packet- per-second performance requirements.
Read more about lan and wan in Network World's LAN & WAN section.