The roll out of network performance monitoring tools in 2012 by Deakin University has led to better remediation and faster discovery of misconfiguration reports.
The university was finding that other IT teams, staff and students were reporting problems before the network operations team did. The IT team was left trying to diagnose those incidents or understand if any changes had affected their services. This was making for a highly reactive environment and negatively impacting service levels.
With the University’s network including approximately 1800 Cisco switches, 1500 wireless access points and 40,000 ports distributed across four campuses in Victoria, Deakin needed a vendor-agnostic tool which was easy to use and could manage as many devices as possible, according to the university's network program leader Daniel Cleary.
Since the roll out of SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor (NPM), Network Configuration Management (NCM) and User Device Tracker (UDT) there has also been improved productivity with the network operations team now working to defined processes.
“The NPM allows us to actively look at how our infrastructure is running. It gives us reports on central processing unit [CPU] utilisation and any issues the devices are reporting,” Cleary said.
“NCM allows us to back up our configurations, have revision or version control and report on what devices aren’t matching our standard templates.”
The university is now looking to monitor uninterruptable power supply (UPS) and audio visual infrastructure over the next 12 months.
The four campuses have a substantial amount of AV and video conferencing equipment.
“We want to proactively fix things before they are identified as broken,” Cleary said.
Cleary added that it is also working with Cisco on some automation projects.
“We are currently looking at a NetFlow security product where we can identify traffic and segregate traffic based on whether it is a worm or virus,” he said.
This project is due to begin in 2016.