The reasoning behind enterprises adopting a network performance monitoring (NPM) solution has changed over the years. Businesses have always needed a tool to examine the performance of their networks, but the methodologies and capabilities of network monitoring have evolved to match current enterprise needs. One term that gets thrown around a lot in relation to networks is end-to-end network monitoring.
End-to-end monitoring, as its name implies, observes the performance of a system from one end of the system to another. For networks, this refers to analyzing network performance from the origin of the data transferal to the device that receives it. This gives network teams insights into how their network operates at every node and connection, providing full visibility into their network’s functionality. Below, we’ve outlined how end-to-end network monitoring allows enterprises to proactively manage their networks and improve their network’s performance.
The biggest reason enterprises adopt an end-to-end network monitoring solution is to boost their end-user experience. End-user experience focuses on performance at the end-user level; for networks, this usually refers to devices that access something via the network. End-to-end monitoring informs the network team of any slow or poor device performance. An NPM can analyze the cause of the performance and determine whether it’s due to the device or a portion of the network. Network teams can also easily simulate a device to examine network performance even when the network isn’t currently being used.
Establishing an accurate network baseline
One of the most important steps in monitoring your network’s performance is knowing your network’s performance baseline. Without an accurate baseline in place, your network team and NPM won’t know when you’re experiencing slow performance. Every network is built different, so each network’s standard performance level will be different.
For end-to-end network monitoring, baselines allow your team and NPM tool to understand how data transmissions on your network normally behave from its origin to its destination. By tracking the data from where it begins to where it ends up, an NPM can identify any potential problem areas on the path the data takes. A baseline gives your network monitoring solution the ability to discover when the network is performing poorly and where.
Network devices and nodes
End-to-end monitoring isn’t only focused on the beginning and end of the data path. It also analyzes each network node in order to examine performance at every area of the network. With end-to-end monitoring, you can observe data transferal rates between every single node on the network path. That will inform your network team and NPM for any slow points on the network. This can help your enterprise single out nodes and devices that are dragging your network performance down. Combined with device health analysis, this can help your NPM determine what devices might be affecting the end-user experience.
Our Network Monitoring Buyer’s Guide contains profiles on the top network performance monitor vendors, as well as questions you should ask providers and yourself before buying.
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