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Are big Internet events getting you in trouble? Flow Analytics to the rescue!

This Vendor View is sponsored by Benocs

Has this ever happened to you?

Have you ever done a great job on something, only to be blind-sided with blame when something unexpected or out of your control goes wrong? Then perhaps you could relate to this story.

As a part of their job, Network Engineers are typically ready for any expected or unexpected surges or drops in traffic. The former is typically easier to prepare for than the latter.

That is why, the day before a popular fruit & tech company gave their planned popular keynote speech virtually, a telecom Network Engineer had the foresight to prepare their network for the expected surge in traffic generated by the speech.

On the day of the keynote speech, most things ran as the Engineer expected. However, several links with no obvious relation to the ongoing streaming event started to overload without an obvious cause. Without delay, the Engineer tried to solve them.

At the same time, the complaints started to roll in: Customer Support emailed that customers could no longer stream the keynote, Customer Care of the Business Segment called to say customers were experiencing flapping VPNs, and several Downstream Transit customers messaged to report packet loss.

After some investigation, the Network Engineer suspected that the Content Delivery Network (CDN) expected for carrying the traffic was barely used, and instead several third-party CDNs were surging, which overloaded the direct links and transits. In order to fix this problem, the Network Engineer relied on the CDN to even-out their traffic distribution because simply adding more capacity was not an option on short notice.

Had he known which CDNs were likely to be involved, he could have prepared in time. But how could he know?

Does this story feel familiar to you?

Flow Analytics for your network can save you stress

When it comes to operating a network, many individuals on both the technical and commercial sides are responsible, however only a few are blamed when things go wrong – and its increasingly hard to determine the root causes. That is exactly what sparked BENOCS to create a network Flow Analytics tool.

When working in a large telecom, we were frustrated with the methods we were using to interpret our network’s traffic. The tools we had didn’t give us the visibility we needed, which regularly led to confusion between us, other departments and our customers.

In order to prevent situations like the one that happened to the Network Engineer, we designed an analytics tool that shows the traffic you need to see in a way that anyone can understand. By integrating data from Internet protocols such as Netflow, BGP, IGP, SNMP and DNS, Flow Analytics visualizes entire traffic flows – from source to destination – to show who is sending traffic where and even the type of traffic they are sending. It also overlays link utilization with flow data, giving you insights on when to best upgrade or downgrade link capacity.

All of these visuals are explained in a simple and concise language and have unlimited licensing, allowing anyone interested in their network-traffic the ability to understand it and share with colleagues. On top of that, Flow Analytics holds unlimited history, which allows you to see how the network performed during past events in order to predict how it will perform in the future.

If everyone in the story had Flow Analytics, they could have planned and communicated better, but also have seen and solved the issue faster.

Try it for yourself and/or share your story

Have you also experienced something similar to our protagonist, the Network Engineer? Tell us your story in the comments below or share it with us on LinkedIN or Twitter @benocsnetworks

If you are curious about our network analytics, signup for a demo account: https://www.benocs.com/analytics/#demolytics

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