Your network infrastructure is not invulnerable. Occasionally it will succumb to technical issues. However, when that happens, you may not even notice it. That’s because IT professionals work behind the scenes, taking a proactive approach to troubleshooting and fixing technical issues. This way issues are resolved before they can become a problem that could cost your company money by affecting your end-users.
A proactive approach is necessary for minimizing downtime—productivity’s worst enemy. For this purpose, technicians often rely on network monitoring systems and support. These systems allow your IT staff or your outsourced provider to stay ahead of issues so your network can continue to run smoothly.
What Is Network Monitoring?
When we say network monitoring, we’re referring to hardware or software that’s able to monitor your network and the data within it 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It works by analyzing data in real time from the network as it passes by or collecting data stored within a node. It then sends the information you need to a dashboard on your device.
Why Is it Important?
With a network monitoring tool, you can keep track of what is going on in your network. Having this information is valuable, as it allows network administrators to act on issues before they can become problems. As a result, a problem can be resolved before end users even realize there was a problem in the first place. This proactive approach is crucial for avoiding downtime.
Common Issues Network Monitoring Catches
The goal of network monitoring software is to give you peace of mind, knowing that any problems your network runs into will be caught and addressed before they can affect your company. Typical issues that are often discovered by network monitoring tools include:
- Failing Hard Drives: Your hard drive contains crucial data for your business operations. The last thing you want to happen is a hardware failure. Infrastructure monitoring tools send an alert as soon as trouble begins, so a technician can back up the information from the hard drive and replace it before total failure occurs.
- Antivirus Software Issues: Without antivirus software, your operating system (OS) is defenseless against cyberthreats such as computer viruses and other malware. Monitoring software can detect if your antivirus software is missing, disabled, or needs an update.
- Malfunctioning Services: The applications you use on your computer rely on processes that run in the background. If these processes stop working for whatever reason, it can lead to application failure. Instead of wondering why your applications don’t work properly, monitoring tools will alert you—and in some cases, will automatically reboot those applications—if they are malfunctioning.
- Low Disk Space: When your computer or server is running slowly, freezes, or locks up, one of the most likely culprits is low disk space. This is particularly troubling if a server is experiencing this problem, as all users are impacted by the affected server. With network monitoring, the network administrator will receive alerts before the disk space is low enough to affect users.
- High CPU Usage: Another issue that’s known for slowing down computers is high central processing unit (CPU) usage. The administrator can keep an eye on CPU usage and adjust processes if needed when alerted by network monitoring software.
- Missing Operating System Updates: Your administrator can set up the network monitoring tool to push OS updates. The system can be made to monitor devices for outdated OS versions and schedule an update when needed.
I Want to Try Network Monitoring. Where Should I Start?
If you have a small- to medium-sized business, outsourcing your network monitoring needs makes the most financial sense. It takes time and resources to train your employees on how to handle your network—time and resources you may not have. Allowing an outsourced solution to monitor your network not only saves you time and money, but also gives you access to experts who specialize in this area.
If you determine that an outsourced solution isn’t for you, there are open source and free network monitoring tools you can use. These options are more limited than what a managed service provider can offer, but they can get the job done.
Choose SNC for Your Network Monitoring Needs
Your company relies on your internal network for your business operations; keep it up and running with network monitoring. At Strategic Network Consultants, we can effectively monitor and manage a network of any size so you don’t have to worry about your network going down. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.