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What is Network Management?

Network management covers the procedures, methods, and tools needed to effectively operate, administrate, and maintain networks. As a practice area, it’s primarily focused on maintaining reliability, efficiency, and overall performance of data transfer channels.

What is Network Management?

Network management involves everything from monitoring and troubleshooting your network to making necessary changes and upgrades. It includes the network’s physical components, such as routers, switches, and cables, as well as the software that runs on the network, such as networking protocols and networking services.

The most important task of network management is ensuring the network runs smoothly and efficiently. It means regularly monitoring the network for potential problems and taking steps to prevent or resolve them. Additionally, it involves rolling out the latest software and firmware updates. Administrators must ensure that only authorized users have network access and that all data on the network is protected from unauthorized access or modification.

Network management has many different aspects, but the specifics vary from network to network. For small networks, a single administrator may be able to handle all of the tasks involved in network management. For bigger networks, however, it is often necessary to divide the tasks among a team of administrators. Implementing controls and best practices ensures that your network resources are utilized efficiently and effectively.

network management

Features

There are various features of network management which are as follows:

Network automation

One defining feature of a modern network management system is network automation. This is the procedure of automating the configuring, handling, testing, deploying, and operating of physical and virtual devices inside a network. Network service availability increases when everyday network tasks and functions are automated and repetitive processes are controlled and managed automatically.

Network Administration

Network administration encompasses tracking network resources, including switches, routers, and servers. It also includes performance monitoring and software updates.

Network Operation

This contains smooth network functioning as created and intended, including close monitoring of activities to quickly and effectively address and fix problems as they occur preferably even before users are aware of the problem.

Network assurance

Network assurance features are often included in modern network management systems. These features help improve network performance, customer experience, and security. Assurance systems help network analytics, application analytics, and policy analytics, as well as AI and ML, to achieve full network assurance.

Network provisioning

Network provisioning involves network resource configuration for the purposes of supporting any given service, like voice functions or accommodating additional users.

Network maintenance

Network maintenance covers upgrades and fixes to network resources. It also consists of proactive and remediation activities executed by working with network administrators, such as replacing network gear like routers and switches.

Network analytics

Network analytics is a software tool that compares incoming information against preprogrammed operational models and makes functional decisions for improving network performance.

network management

The importance of Network Management

The principal objective of network management is to ensure your network infrastructure runs efficiently and smoothly. By doing so, it achieves the following objectives.

Minimizes Costly Network Disruptions

Network disruptions are expensive. Depending on the size of the organization or the nature of the affected processes, businesses could experience losses in the thousands or millions of dollars after just an hour of downtime.

This loss is more than just the direct financial impact of network disruption – it’s also the cost of a damaged reputation that makes customers reconsider their long-term relationships. Slow, unresponsive networks are frustrating to both customers and employees. They make it more difficult for staff to respond to customer requests and concerns. Customers who experience network challenges too often will consider jumping ship.

Improved Productivity

By studying and monitoring every aspect of the network, network management does multiple jobs simultaneously. With that, IT staff are freed from repetitive everyday routines and can focus on the more strategic aspects of their job.

Improved Network Security

An effective network management program can identify and respond to cyber threats before they spread and impact user experience. Network management ensures best practice standards and compliance with regulatory requirements. Better network security enhances network privacy and gives users reassurance that they can use their devices freely.

Holistic View of Network Performance

Effective network management provides a comprehensive view of your infrastructure’s performance. You are better positioned to identify, analyze, and fix issues quickly.

What is a Network Management protocol?

A network management protocol defines the processes, procedures, and policies for managing, monitoring, and maintaining the network. It is how network administrators acquire and view information from a network device regarding availability, network latency, packet/data loss, and errors via a network management system.

A network management system can also collect information from devices automatically through a network management protocol for automated tasks such as updating software or performance monitoring. Examples of network management protocols include:

network management

Challenges associated

The success of your network management entirely depends on the understanding you have of your business needs and your solid planning. However, a few setbacks may threaten the functionality of your network management system. These include:

Hybrid and Cloud Deployments

Modern digitized organizations use a mix of cloud services and on-premises services. The ability to control and put both network types under normal operation can challenge the organization.

Ephemeral IP Addresses

In traditional times, the identification of users and modern devices was made through an IP address. The virtualized forms and computer-based applications require incorporating elastic IP addresses and ephemerals, which may pose a challenge.

Multisite Network Administration

In network management, larger network operating systems span virtual deployments, which may be multiple and physical and which may prove to be a challenge to the user and network administrator.

Keep your business healthy with Network Management

Just as you need regular check-ups to stay healthy, so does your business. Your digital network is the circulatory system that channels data to all parts of the business. Just as you need to care for your heart to keep your body healthy, you need to monitor your network infrastructure to ensure your business is well and thriving. The right network management system is what will keep your infrastructure sound and your business healthy.

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