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Visual Networks Targets LANs With Network Analysis Gear

Visual Networks has moved inside the local area network (LAN) with the announcement today of its Ethernet ASE suite of network and application performance management appliances.

A part of the company's UpTime Select solution, the new appliances are designed to provide the same actionable, in-depth performance data that the Visual Networks' existing products provide on the wide area network (WAN). "That has become important with all of these new applications on the LAN," says Visual executive vice president of strategy and business development Steve Hindman. "There's voice over IP, Web services J2EE. The ability to see how all these applications are flowing and making it back to the end user is important."

The new applications are a departure for Visual Networks, which has traditionally focused on the WAN and whose previous UpTime Select products provided visibility into layer 1-7 networks. However, Hindman says that, with new applications bringing network operations on both sides of the firewall closer together, LAN appliances were a logical next-step for Visual Networks.

"At one point, you have a LAN guy, a WAN guy and a desktop guy in a company," he says. "From a user perspective, though, that has all rolled together into corporate infrastructure. Being able to see what's happening on the WAN and the LAN at the same time and across both has become very important, and technologies like VoIP have underscored that."

The Ethernet ASE appliances come in three levels, for small, medium and large-scale users. The Model 120 provides 2 Mbps of analysis in each direction and is aimed and small business and SOHO users with cable and digital subscriber line (DSL) network connections. "These are users who are moving up from a dial-up to a business DSL connection and want the ability to troubleshoot and analyze their network," Hindman says.

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