These days, all companies need a well-functioning network. Outages, overloads, and bottlenecks can annoy both employees and customers and interfere with their jobs and their usage of products.
Whenever such problems arise, IT managers need to diagnose the situation. One essential tool for that purpose is a network map, which basically gives an overhead view of the relevant infrastructure.
What is network mapping?
Network mapping is the process of creating a pictorial representation of the connections between devices within an IT environment. Network mapping is used by network administrators and other operations teams to ensure that all network connectivities within the infrastructure are operating smoothly.
(By the way, want to try our new free network mapping tool? Just click here to see it!)
What are network mapping tools and software?
Network mapping tools show the connectivities of all local physical devices and collect real-time data from them to create relevant reports. For example, the software can monitor performance, identify inefficiencies, show bottlenecks, and uncover hidden items.
In the past, network administrators would manually draw visual depictions of their networks on one page. Of course, it would take a lot of time – and the IT staff would have to change the chart whenever a new device would be set up or taken down. But today, network mapping software can automatically discover the network topology and all connected devices.
Why is network mapping important?
Network maps help with network visualization, device monitoring, and network diagnosis. Companies often send large data files from or within their networks and can consume a large amount of bandwidth, which can cause other systems to work slowly or even fail at the worst and cause a complete crash of the system’s servers.
In this example, system administrators can use a network map to find the exact computer that is causing the bandwidth problem. They can also use network maps to find things such as glitches or overload parameters in the backup process.
Second, imagine that a company has installed some new software that then consumes too much data. Perhaps the application has bugs or some other type of errors. Finding that specific software can be done much more quickly and easily with network maps.
Third, say that your network is down and unable to connect to local devices. There are no uploads, backups, or installations occurring on the network at all. The devices might have lost connectivity because of your hardware having some specific problems. Network maps can show you which hardware device is the issue.
In general, network maps can also help to address compliance issues, automate additional IT processes, optimize networks, save time, and see live traffic, top protocols, uptime, downtime, network coverage, and data volume in a single dashboard with associated reports.
Try our free network mapping tool
We at Faddom, a new IT cloud InfraOps startup, have created a new free software platform for mapping physical network devices such as switches and routers to troubleshoot problems, analyze the impact of changes, generate documentation, and ensure compliance.
Curious? Just go here to try it out!