Businesses perform a variety of actions on their network to achieve their goals. Admins find it challenging to track the activities within the network as multiple actions are performed on a network during day-to-day business operations. The challenges can proliferate for large businesses with many networks. Administrators must have access to real-time network analyzer tools to get visibility into their network traffic. It can help them monitor the network, analyze its functioning, and troubleshoot problems.
Network Analysis Explained
Network analysis is the process of taking a closer look at network traffic and getting the information required about the activity on the network, such as the type of data passing through, the speed of data transmission, and so on.
This method also helps understand the data moving through the network and offers the details in a simple layout. Network analyzer tools are designed to perform various tasks, such as:
- Determining the availability of Wi-Fi and its speed
- Troubleshooting network-specific problems
- Detecting bottlenecks in the bandwidth
- Identifying network intrusion and the presence of any spyware on the system
- Figuring out if the whole or any part of the network is being targeted by a DDoS attack
- Finally, uncovering faulty hardware and applications
Some network analyzer tools are available as standalone hardware with installed software. Others come with software fitted on a computer as part of the network. The choice of network analysis tools must be based on the number of proprieties they can interpret, the value of the process, and the data analysis it can provide.
Why are Network Analyzer Tools Crucial?
Network analysis is an essential element of managing a business smoothly. It helps in the smooth and efficient running of an enterprise. It also ensures an optimized network by proactively identifying performance issues before they impact the whole network.
Network analysis also fulfills specific responsibilities associated with systems administrators, network engineers, security managers, and programmers.
Best Network Analyzer Tools
There are various types of network analysis tools and software on the market. Each one has its own features and focus. While choosing a network analysis tool, you can choose from a free or a paid option. Additionally, free tools are suitable for small companies with a limited network and a small budget. However, they come with limited functionality.
Paid or premium tools are better for large and growing companies with complex network systems. They also come with a broader suite of features.
SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor (NPM)
NPM is a user-friendly tool for beginners and experienced IT professionals. It comes with a number of useful network management features for detailed network analysis and Wi-Fi optimization.
NPM’s proprietary network path visualization tools allow users to drag and drop various performance metrics into one centralized comparison tool. Data from different parts of the network can be viewed side-by-side, allowing analysts to detect errors in one part of the network and identify the source. Additionally, the extensive set of high-quality features makes NPM one of the favorites of many businesses.
Wi-Fi Analyzer, available through the Microsoft store, is a high-quality tool intended only for short-term use. The app can be installed on any phone or laptop for Windows 10. While the basic version is low on features, the Pro version does a deep analysis of your network and creates visualizations for any weak spots in your network. It offers suggestions for channels you should use if your network is slow and congested.
Paessler PRTG Network Monitor
PRTG Network Monitor offers detailed and professional Wi-Fi analysis by checking every aspect of the Wi-Fi network. It runs through crucial metrics such as devices, availability, traffic, load, signal strength, and bandwidth. Additionally, it provides insight into router uptime and downtime to detect faulty ones. It can also determine if your Wi-Fi disruptions are caused by an overloaded network.
If you want to try PRTG Network Monitor, you can use the 30-day free trial. It can be upgraded to a paid license, with the price varying depending on the sensors needed and the number of servers on which the tool is to be installed.
ManageEngine NetFlow Manager
ManageEngine NetFlow Manager is a comprehensive traffic analytics tool. It offers real-time visibility into the network bandwidth performance by applying flow technologies. You can also access detailed reports to help network admin and teams plan for better network management.
Another popular and reputed network analyzer tool is the ipMonitor. It monitors various metrics that affect network traffic. The tool is easy to install and can be operational within minutes. It can start monitoring everything from resource use to network infrastructure node’s performance.
Setting up a network effectively and efficiently is essential for every enterprise. It is equally vital to monitor the network using the best network monitoring tools and software. Network analysis can save your business from downtime and potential losses by proactively detecting problems, pointing out their source, and troubleshooting the issues that keep your network running smoothly.