With businesses becoming more reliant on the Internet than ever before, the need for strong business networks is constantly growing. Companies require a network for a majority of their mission-critical tasks. As such, they need to ensure that their network is performing at the levels they expect. Network monitoring tools allow for enterprises to keep a network operating efficiently for their workflows.
Network performance monitoring (NPM) tools analyze your network to discover and alert users to performance issues. The tool continuously examines the traffic that flows through your network to determine if the network is running quickly and productively. By measuring metrics such as bandwidth usage, throughput, and packet loss, an NPM solution can provide valuable insights into your network. Why does your enterprise need a network monitoring tool? We’ve provided the basic benefits that network monitoring tools provide to businesses and why you should adopt one below!
Establishing a network performance baseline
The first step in determining your network’s current performance is measuring it against your performance baseline. Establishing a network baseline lets your enterprise know how your network typically behaves. NPM tools can create this baseline by constantly examining your network and profiling your network’s normal performance levels. It can be incredibly difficult to determine when your network performance isn’t up to snuff when you don’t know how your network runs without any problems.
Monitoring for hidden network problems
Your business will probably recognize when major changes in network performance occur. Even without the use of monitoring tools, larger performance issues (like disabled nodes or poor connections) are generally easy to detect by your employees. You don’t necessarily need a tool to tell you that your network is down; your team will figure that out eventually. So why bother with network monitoring tools at all? Well, just because your company hasn’t noticed any performance issues doesn’t mean they don’t exist. Not every performance problem will be worth correcting immediately, but knowing about them as they happen will keep your network team informed on what’s happening with your network.
Monitoring small changes in network performance
Not all performance problems have a huge effect. Some performance issues might only have a small impact on your network – small enough to be untraceable by the human eye. While these problems may not seem like a big deal for your enterprise, small performance issues can often cascade into something much larger. Slower-than-average performance in one area of the network, even if it isn’t major slowdown, might be caused by malware. That malware could spread to other parts of the network if it isn’t discovered and eliminated first.
Instantly know about network performance issues
For optimal network performance troubleshooting, you need to reduce the amount of time between when a problem happens on your network and when your network team learns about it. While your team may eventually discover performance issues on their own, an NPM is always on the lookout for problems. When it discovers one, it can alert your network team in real-time, letting you instantly take steps to address the issue. Many NPMs also operate on a tiered alert system, meaning it will alert you to critical network problems first. That way, your network team can fix major, potentially dangerous issues before tackling ones that only slightly affect network performance.
Looking for a solution to help you improve your network performance? 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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