NetScout Simplifies Assuring The User Experience

NetScout Systems, Inc., today announced the nGenius Service Delivery Manager, a real-time service dashboard that provides unified visibility into end-to-end service delivery in context with how services are delivered and consumed to more effectively manage the user experience. Building on the nGenius Service Assurance Solution's ability to collect, correlate, analyze and report on mass volumes of packet-flow data, nGenius Service Delivery Manager closes the gap between the network and business s

June 16, 2010

7 Min Read
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NetScout Simplifies Assuring the User Experience

WESTFORD, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--NetScout Systems, Inc., today announced the nGenius Service Delivery Manager, a real-time service dashboard that provides unified visibility into end-to-end service delivery in context with how services are delivered and consumed to more effectively manage the user experience. Building on the nGenius Service Assurance Solution's ability to collect, correlate, analyze and report on mass volumes of packet-flow data, nGenius Service Delivery Manager closes the gap between the network and business services to deliver timely and actionable management insight to effectively assure service levels. This new service-oriented dashboard combines real-time and historical views of user-defined service domains, simplifying the view into the health and availability of delivered services. The dashboard automates the detection of service quality problems and emerging security threats across physical, virtual and cloud-based services from the application hosting environment, through the network, to the user.

Today's business services are no longer comprised of a single application, but rather a collection of applications, middleware, network elements and technology enablers that work in unison. The resulting complexity of these services, combined with the underlying network foundation, create significant challenges for IT organizations tasked with enabling the business and meeting increasing service level expectations. Monitoring all of these "moving parts" remains profoundly difficult for the IT organization, which is overrun by an explosion of point management tools and drowning in disconnected metrics that yield limited insight into the actual delivered services and user experience. With a growing reliance on always-on service availability, IT professionals need to simplify managing service delivery complexities with relevant, service-oriented insight that aligns with how the business consumes these services to efficiently deliver consistent and high-quality service levels.

"In order to meet business demands, IT organizations must become service oriented in their approach to delivering functionality," said Will Cappelli, research vice president at Gartner. "This means a focus on end-to-end integrated service management. Given the growing complexity of the infrastructure, service quality simply cannot be ensured unless service management is end user experience centric and holistic."

nGenius Service Delivery Manager models and reports on services in their business context to represent how services are hosted, their interrelationships, and how they are ultimately consumed. Flexible user-defined service domains allow the IT organization to customize and organize views that dynamically align with how services are delivered to the business across physical and virtual infrastructure to help better meet committed service levels. Domains are constructed based upon physical and logical attributes, such as a specific applications or services, physical sites, logical workgroups, geographic regions or business units. This enables a dynamic representation of service elements correlated with user experience revealing an unmatched view into end-to-end service delivery.The nGenius Service Delivery Manager leverages the complete family of nGenius intelligent data sources to collect and analyze valuable user traffic on a distributed basis, including the widely deployed nGenius InfiniStream appliance, the nGenius Virtual Agent for virtual server environments, and the nGenius Integrated Agent - which can be integrated into the Cisco Integrated Services Router and other network equipment. Leveraging the nGenius Service Assurance Solution's ability to automatically recognize applications, protocols and enabling technology, IT staff can quickly construct a logical view of a service to associate the interrelated elements with a few mouse-clicks. This significantly reduces the time for deployment and simplifies adding new applications and services as they are introduced into the operating environment. With its anywhere, anytime web-based console, the IT staff can quickly visualize a top-level representation of critical services in context with how the service is deployed to support business operations.

Network-Based Anomaly Detection
The nGenius Service Delivery Manager delivers Intelligent Early Warning capabilities to automate the identification and reporting of service and network anomalies. Continuously monitoring and analyzing application and service traffic flowing across the network at multiple points, nGenius Service Delivery Manager identifies deviations in "normal" traffic, application and server usage to identify service degradations before they impact the end user or can lead to service meltdowns. The system auto-learns the patterns of service, application and network behavior and automatically self-tunes to adapt to changing service delivery conditions. To support large deployments, the nGenius network-based anomaly detection engine is resident in each of the nGenius Intelligent Data Sources to enable end-to-end visibility with highly scalable analysis capabilities. In addition to being leveraged across the nGenius Service Assurance Solution, the anomaly alerts can be sent to industry-leading network management consoles, including HP Network Node Manager i-series and Business Availability Center; IBM Tivoli Enterprise Console and Tivoli Netcool/OMINbus; and EMC Ionix Service Assurance Manager, Ionix IP Availability Manager and Ionix Discovery Manager.

Integrated Threat Management
nGenius Service Delivery Manager helps IT organizations identify risk, emerging threats and attacks that are often missed by signature-based security solutions. The newest types of cyber attacks are often narrowly focused or operate in a stealth manner. Traditional perimeter security approaches fail to identify the subtle beginnings of an attack. Malware, as an example, is one of the most difficult threats to detect as it is typically transported onto the network via well known or trusted applications, thus avoiding detection by traditional firewalls and intrusion prevention systems.

Providing an incremental layer of threat detection, nGenius Service Delivery Manager leverages network-based anomaly detection to recognize and identify unexpected changes in application and server behavior. The solution automatically recognizes potential emerging threats characterized by conditions such as changes in service behavior, resource usage anomalies, server modification, or violations against a defined policy. Real-time early warning alerts are provided when deviations or policy violations are detected. These new threat management capabilities are complemented with the extensive post-event forensic capabilities of the nGenius Service Assurance Solution.

Service-Oriented Workflows
Service-oriented workflows allow IT users to quickly drill-down into a wide range of contextual data to assess a situation, triage its impact, and confidently make next-step action decisions. With unified contextual views, IT staff can easily progress from high-level service views within a selected service domain, to flow-based transactions, and then to deep packet analysis -- all from a single integrated solution. The task of managing complex service delivery environments is simplified and automated, empowering first-level staff to identify and resolve more issues independently, and when required, make rapid, more-effective next step decisions to forward or escalate the incident. The nGenius Service Delivery Manager can be leveraged across the IT organization including the network, application, server, data center and security teams for better operational consistency, improved efficiency and to speed time to knowledge. Collaboration improves because the IT staff shares the same, cross-indexed metrics and views, eliminating the need to re-analyze incidents as problems progress or escalate across the IT organization."With today's pervasive service delivery challenges, IT staff needs contextual insight into the health of service delivery that aligns with how users consume services," said Steven Shalita, vice president, marketing, NetScout. "Further strengthening our Unified Service Delivery Management framework, the nGenius Service Delivery Manager enables IT organizations to flexibly customize their service delivery management architecture in a way that aligns to their unique operational requirements. The result is better end-to-end service delivery knowledge to optimize and protect the delivery of business services, while also predicting and preventing service impacting issues. This allows the IT organization to more efficiently maintain the integrity of service delivery and the quality of the user experience, freeing time to focus on strategic projects rather than reacting to problems."

The nGenius Service Delivery Manager is contained in the upcoming 4.9 release of the nGenius Service Assurance Solution with general availability in early July, 2010. The nGenius Service Delivery Manager leverages all existing nGenius Intelligent Data Sources and metrics and is tightly integrated the with nGenius Performance Manager and Sniffer?? Analysis modules. Existing nGenius K2 customers under MasterCare agreements are eligible to receive upgrades to the new product at no cost. Please contact NetScout or your NetScout authorized reseller for more information. 

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