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Network Management Definition of Network Management It is a process to maximize the reliability and utilization of network components in order to optimize

network availability and responsiveness. Key Decisions about Network Management Before an effective, high level network management process can be designed, much less implemented, six key decisions need to be made that influence the strategy, direction and cost of the process. What will be managed by this process? Who will manage it? ow much authority will this person be given? What types of tools and support will be provided? !o what extent will other processes be integrated with this process? What levels of service and "uality will be expected?

#nce made, these decisions will define the scope of responsibilities and more important, the functional areas that will be charged with employing the process on a daily basis. 1. What will be managed by this process?- !his is especially true in large, complex environments where worldwide networks may vary in terms of topology, protocols, security and suppliers. $or example, some infrastructures may be responsible for bothe classified and unclassified networks with widely varying security re"uirements, supplier involvement, and government regulations. We decided early on exactly which elements of network management would be managed by our department and which ones would be managed by others. $or instance, we all mutually decided that government agencies would manage encryption, the in% house security department would manage network security, and computer operations along with its help desk would administer network passwords. 2. Who will manage it? & #nce we decide on what we will manage, we need to decide on who will manage it. Initially, this decision should determine which department within the infrastructure will be assigned the responsibility for heading up the design, implementation, and ongoing management of this process. Within that department, a person will be assigned to have overall responsibility for the network management process. !he ideal candidate to serve as network management process owner will have strong people skills, knowledge of network resources, and a sense of urgency. !he people skills involve working with developers about application profiles, the mix and arrival patterns of transactions, and planned increases in work loads, as well as working effectively with users about desktop re"uirements, connectivity and security. ' network management process owner should be knowledgeable about network operating systems, utility programs, support software and key
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hardware components such as routers , switchers, hubs and repeaters. #ne of the most valuable traits for the owner of this process is a sense of urgency in tactically responding to, and resolving, a variety of network problems. #ther desirable traits include knowledge of infrastructure software and hardware and the ability to analyze metrics. Prioritized Characteristics of a Network 'bility to work with I! developers 'bility to work effectively with users (nowledge of network software and components 'bility to think and act tactically (nowledge of systems software and components (nowledge of software configurations (nowledge of hardware configurations (nowledge of desktop hardware and software 'bility to analyze metrics 'bility to evaluate documentation (nowledge of applications (nowledge of company)s business model 'bility to manage diversity (nowledge of backup systems 'bility to think and plan strategically anagement Process owner

!. "ow m#ch a#thority will this person be gi$en? !his is probably the most significant "uestion of all because, without ade"uate authority, the necessary enforcement and resulting effectiveness of the process rapidly diminish. $ew practices accelarate failure more "uickly than giving an individual responsibility for an activity without the appropriate authority. *xecutive support plays a key role here from several perspectives. $irst, managers must be willing to surrender some of their authority over the network to the individual now responsible for overseeing its management. +econd, ,anagers must be willing to support their process owner in situations of conflict that will surely arise. -onflicts involving network management can originate from several sources. #ne source of conflict can come from enforcing network security policies such as if, when, and how data over the network will be encrypted or under what instances a single sign%on scheme
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will be employed for network and application logons. 'nother common source of network conflict invloves user expectations about the infrastructure backing up desktop data instead of the more practical method of saving it to the server. $actors such as experience, training, fatigue, .udgement, negligence, oversight, attitude, and abuse should all be considered in determining the appropriate response to a potential misuse of authority. %easons for Network Connecti$ity &tandards Category /. 'vailability 1. 2erformance 3. 4eployment 5. -apacity Explanation 0onstandard devices can lock up networks, causing online system outages 0onstandard hardware can cause nonstop transmissions, so called network storms, which can significantly slow down online transactions !he deployment of a new application often re"uires installing additional desktop computers. +ome devices that deviate from standards are improperly configured for the network on which they are connected. !his can cause countless retransmissions, unanticipated network traffic, and problems for capacity planners. ,ost users want to feel assured that their data and applications are secured from external hackers and internal saboteurs. 0etwork connectivity standards simplify maintenance time and material costs by reducing training needs, spare parts inventory, and supplier management. !he smaller the variety of devices on the network, the smaller the need for specialized skills and diagnostic e"uipment to troubleshoot problems.

6. +ecurity 7. ,aintenance 8. !roubleshooting

'. What types of tools and s#pport will be pro$ided? 4ecisions about the type of tools and the amount of vendor support that will be provided directly influence the costs of managing netwroks. ' variety of network tools are available to monitor and manage a network. +ome are incorporated in hardware components, but most are software based. -osts can range from .ust a few thousand dollars to literally millions of dollars for mutliyear contracts with full onsite maintenance. !he expense for tools can sometimes be mitigated by leveraging what other sites may be using, by negotiating aggressive terms with reluctant suppliers, and by inventorying your inhouse tools. #ne tool often overlooked for netowrk management is one that will facilitate network documentation. *ffective network management re"uires documentation that is both simple to understand yet thorough enough to be meaningful. !here are a number of standard network diagramming tools available to assist in generating this documentation. (. )o what e*tent will other processes be integrated with this process?- ' well designed network management process will have strong relationships to six other systems management processes. !hese processes are availability, performance and tuning, change management, problem management, capacity planning and security. !he extent to which network management
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integrates with these other processes by sharing tools, databases, procedures or cross trained personnel will influence the effectiveness of the process. +. What le$els of ser$ice and ,#ality will be e*pected? - !he levels of service and "uality that network groups negotiate with their customers directly affect the cost of hardware, software, training and support. !his is a key decision that should be thoroughly understood and committed to by the groups responsible for budgeting its costs and delivering on its agreements. +uppliers of network components, such as routers, switches, hubs and repeaters, should also be part of these negotiations since their e"uipment has a direct impact on availability and performance.