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Beyond monitoring traffic flow and generating alarms every time thresholds are passed, NetMRI periodically analyzes the contents of all router and switch tables to detect device-level problems, such as router and VLAN instability.

Beyond reporting that a given serial link has an excessive error rate, NetMRI analyzes the configuration of the interfaces on both sides of the link to determine what is causing the excessive error rate. NetMRI also tracks changes in status and configuration for all managed devices and displays the Detected Changes and Most Changed Devices listings in an accessible dashboard view.

NetMRI is a network management interface to analyze and monitor devices and enterprise networks, their protocols and their configurations from a convenient Web browser window. The primary browser pages are called the NetMRI Dashboards. The Dashboards are your home pages for managing devices on the network. The Dashboards provide easy access to tasks and to the status of the networks.

NetMRI provides a layered system of tabs to access and operate features of the software. The top layer of the NetMRI tabbed interface provides the six key functional areas of the software, consisting of the following pages.

The NetMRI Dashboards

To be able to see the dashboards, make sure that the Flash Player is enabled in your browser. Refer to browser Help for instructions.

The Dashboard tab provides three high-level Dashboard summaries of information and network analytics, selectable from the Select Dashboard menu at the top of the page.

  • The Timeline Status Summary dashboard displays the Network Scorecard (seen here), a numeric metric that provides an at-a-glance overall assessment of the current state of the network. The Timeline Status Summary also provides graphs showing most-changed devices, a policy compliance breakdown, and historical graphs of percent policy compliance, issue variation and changes:
    • Under Timeline Status Summary, the Policy Compliance chart shows the daily percentage of all managed devices, as a pie chart, that match against Policy Compliance Rules from the defined Policy Compliance criteria in the NetMRI system. The Percent Policy Compliance bar chart shows the same daily data as a progression from one day to the next;
    • The Issue Variation chart lists the following data points for the overall daily issue status in the NetMRI system or the Operations Center: the daily Overall Score in yellow, the total issue count and Delta (change in number of Issues; this value can be positive or negative for the time period measurement) in blue; and the number of Added and Deleted Issues in blue. A yellow trendline shows the Overall Score trend over the chart's time period. Green dots at the bottom of the chart are the activity indicators for the measurement time period, showing the number of added or deleted issues. Clicking the trendline opens the Network Analysis–>Issues page, showing the corresponding Overall Score History stacked bar chart;
    • The Changes area a bar chart and trendline for specified time increments, with the bar chart indicating the total number of changes, breaking out the administrative and hardware changes for the time period, and the trendline showing the average rate of changes across the entire chart time period.
  • The Issue Summarydashboard replicates the Network Scorecard, shows a Top Issue Types bar chart and a Top Affected Devices bar chart, and displays historical graphs of Issue type and instance trends.
    • Two important bar charts, Top IssueTypes and Top Affected Devices, show at a glance the Issues that appear most frequently in the managed network; and the devices exhibiting the largest number of Issues;
    • The New Issue Types table lists all new Issues of specific types that appear for the current time period (corresponds to the #New column in the main Network Analysis–>Issues page);
    • The New Issue Instances table provides the number of devices affected by each Issue type (this value corresponds to the #Affected value in the main Issues page).
    • The Type Issue Trend area chart combines sections for severity Info (blue), severity Warning (yellow) and severity Error (red), each of which are links to the main Issues page showing a table only for the issues of the chosen severity type.
    • The Type Instance Trend area chart combines sections for severity Info (blue), severity Warning (yellow) and severity Error (red), each of which are links to the main Issues page showing a table only for the issues of the chosen severity type.
  • The Change Summary dashboard shows most-changed types, most-changed models, most-changed devices, number of changes detected over time, and most-active change makers.

In the Timeline Status Summary dashboard, the zero value in the Issue Variations chart's Y axis corresponds to the average number of issues for the shown time period.

The main Dashboard page and Network Analysis –> Issues pages display the Network Scorecard, which is a quick-glance guide to the overall status of all Issues in the managed network.

See About the Network Scorecard for more information about this tool.

  • To select among the dashboard types: Open the Select Dashboard list, then click the desired type.
  • To change the date or period for information displayed in the Dashboard: See Setting the Date and Period.
  • To change the scope of information displayed in the Dashboard: Select an item in the Select Device Groups panel.
  • To view supporting data: Hover the cursor over various elements in graphs and charts.
  • To zoom in the Timeline Status Summary graphs: Drag to select the section you want to see zoomed in. When you release the mouse button, all three graphs will zoom in.
  • To zoom out the Timeline Status Summary graphs (after zooming in): Click Show All below the center graph.

  Network Analysis

Network Analysis also features the Network Scorecard on its front page. Information is organized in four tabs within the Network Analysis page:

  • The Issues tab summarizes current network status, showing the same scorecard that appears on the main Dashboard; a flexible Network History chart; and an overview of current problems and possible problems in the network;
  • The Changes tab summarizes all recent changes made to the network, and provides features to change the information displayed in the summary table;
  • The Policy Compliance tab summarizes the results of Policies developed in the Policy Compliance features for device groups and active devices in the network;
  • The Performance tab summarizes active device operations in charts and tables.

  Network Explorer

The Network Explorer tab displays everything NetMRI learns about the network. Network Explorer is a good starting point for inspecting the results of a Network Discovery process, viewing the topology of the discovered network, viewing the operational state of individual network devices (through a feature called the Device Viewer), and obtaining views of how the network is behaving in different locations in the topology.

Tabs within the Network Explorer tab offer different ways to examine network data:

  • The Inventory tab provides basic information about devices, interfaces, operating systems and models in the network.
  • The Summaries tab lists routes (for all routing protocols), subnetworks, Route Targets, Network Views, VRFs (Virtual Routing and Forwarding instances), VLANs, HSRPs/VRRPs and TCP/UDP port usage in the network.
  • The Topology tab provides an interactive viewer for exploring your network's structure.
  • The Discovery tab provides detailed information about NetMRI's discovery processes, including the ability to affect Discovery settings for individual devices, perform/repeat Discovery on a single device, set licensing for a managed device and remove a device from NetMRI management. (For more information on device-related Discovery functions, see Viewing Device Discovery Status and Re-Discovering a Device.)

Configuration Management

Configuration Management provides a powerful set of features for managing, normalizing and editing configurations for all devices managed by NetMRI, including the following:

  • The Config Archive tab lists all devices in each Device Group, and is the front end for browsing, viewing, and editing configuration files from any active device, or comparing between two devices in the managed network. Configuration files drive the operation of higher-end routers, switches, firewalls and other device types across the network. You can read, edit and compare similar-device configuration files across the network;
  • The Config Search tab lets you search devices in the network for a particular configuration string, an IP address or other specific device specification such as a MAC address, device model or other phenomena, using many different types of search criteria and even regular expressions.
  • The Job Management tab enables creation, scheduling, approval and execution of Job Management scripts in the Perl and CCS languages, and the definition of custom issues to extend the library of issue types that NetMRI uses for reporting and monitoring of adverse events in the network. Job Management is used to automate common network administration tasks, and efficiently enforce normalization and best-practices configuration across the managed network. A critical feature set classified under Job Management is the Automation Change Manager (ACM), that leverages NetMRI's scripting capabilities to support a set of Infoblox NIOS network automation utilities. Subcategories of Job Management include the following tabbed pages:
    • The Scripts tab lists all scripts in the NetMRI system;
    • The Library tab provides a location for CCS and Perl subroutines that can be called by other scripts;
    • The Config Templates tab, a location for templates containing configuration snippets and variables for easier job automation;
    • The Lists tab, a second library page, for lists of spreadsheet-type list data for use in automation jobs;
    • The Scheduled Jobs tab, showing the current list of scheduled automation jobs;
    • The Triggered Jobs tab, showing the current list of recently triggered jobs;
    • The Job History, showing the complete history of automation jobs run in the NetMRI managed network;
    • Custom Issues, that allows definition of custom issues based on job execution.
  • The Policy Design Center, to create rules and policies, and deploy policies on the network. Policies are a tool for ensuring all devices in the network meet minimum standards of readiness and security. Rules are the building blocks that form a policy. You deploy policies against devices and groups of devices.
    • The Summary tab provides features for quick creation of Policy Rules, build a new Policy or schedule and deploy Policies;
    • The Rules tab allows exploring of the entire library of Policy Rules and the ability to create, edit, copy, import and export Rules;
    • The Policies tab provides general Policy management features, such as editing, printing and import/export, and to test Policies against devices, configuration files and configuration templates;
    • The Policy Deployment tab is where admins enable policies against individual devices or device groups.

  Reports

The Reports page provides features to run publishable reports, from providing device information in a report, to reports across device groups or types of devices, to network-wide reports indicating trends across the network.

  • The Reports Gallery lists standard and custom reports that are available in the current instance of NetMRI, and provides the interface to run and create new reports. Related Report types are gathered into categories where similar data sets can be compared and analyzed. See Scheduling and Running Reports for more;
  • The Scheduled Reports tab lists reports that are currently scheduled to run from the NetMRI appliance, and allows the editing of scheduled reports to change their timing and configuration. See Scheduling and Running Reports for more;

The Report Manager tab provides listings of all Active and Inactive Reports for the current NetMRI appliance, and enables monitoring of currently running and active reports. See Opening the Report Manager for more information.

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