Networks Telecom: Do you need a dedicated network monitor?

If your network costs £100,000, Mutiny says you need a dedicated network monitor plugged into it

Network monitor company Mutiny has launched a sub-£10,000 dedicated network monitor, which runs on a Toshiba SG-20 mini-server appliance. The Mutiny on Board software runs continuously, giving a real-time graphic display, alerts and reports of network performance and problems. "It is intended for smaller businesses with a network that cost around £100,000," said Dr Andy Murray, technical director of Mutiny. "Ten percent of that cost will ensure mission critical services." Early customers include Eminox Exhausts, a £100m-turnover vehicle parts company, which uses it to monitor 200 machines. This size of customer is too small to be running a big-ticket network management solution such as Tivoli, HP OpenView or CA Unicenter, and does not have time to install and configure complex tools, said Murray -- hence Mutiny's claim to have made a "plug and ping" monitor device. As well as network traffic, it monitors CPU usage and memory and disk performance. Future versions will include agents that continually test and monitor performance of key applications such as Exchange, IIS and SQL Server. These will, for instance, test the function of Exchange by sending emails. The product will be sold by Unit 4 Security Solutions, Networks Unlimited and XMA in the UK. It is reportedly the first value-added software to be delivered on the Toshiba appliance. Mutiny is also hoping to sell some through service providers who will install it at user sites as part of their customer premises equipment (CPE). The name Mutiny is based on the fact that the product is "revolutionary" and "bottom up", said Murray. Also, the first two letters refer to Manchester University, where it was developed. It is not clear whether the whole name is an acronym though. Other network management products on show at Networks Telecom included Packeteer's ReportCenter 2.0, which adds report features to the company's AppVantage and PacketShaper systems. The new version shows performance levels across Packeteer products which are intended to boost network performance and quality of service by prioritising data packets on the network. Meanwhile, Intel promised to move its own LANDesk network management products into the Web services era, by making them more modular.

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