Over the years, networks have greatly evolved, becoming highly heterogenous and dynamic in nature. Packed with portfolios of applications, elements and real-time networking capabilities, these networks are intelligent, dynamic and resilient, but they are by no means self-secured. As traditional visibility tools fall short of the lofty visibility goals these networks demand, end-to-end visibility remains a pipedream. Progress Software, at the recent Security Field Day event in California presented two products, Flowmon and WhatsUp Gold, both newly acquired solutions which are now a part of the bourgeoning Progress portfolio that go beyond traditional network surveillance to perform effective network forensics and deliver total visibility end to end.
From Visibility to Insight
In the past few years, the industry press has coined a flurry of buzzwords and catch phrases, the two most interesting of which are network monitoring and network visibility. But really, network monitoring and visibility are more than just buzzwords. They are in fact the answer to all problems related to network security.
The modern network has potential blind spots, obstructed visibility, inside threats and protracted time to insights. For years, companies have been building solutions to address these issues but most times, those solutions do a largely inadequate job at best. Too often, it becomes a game of insights and analytics, when what’s truly required are the capabilities of real-time detection that can truly accelerate instant troubleshooting and elimination. Visibility tools thus far have been able to do the first with varying degrees of perfection but there are still ways to go with enabling that data to translate into the said result.
Not All Network Monitoring Solutions Are Made Equal
The secret to protecting the network from novel and malicious threats is to have clear end-to-end visibility of everything inside it. It is by no means the end-game but it is the means to an end. Network operators’ ultimate ambition is to have clear visibility of the risks and liabilities in the network and the power to eliminate them before they unfold into a grand attack.
For this, we need solutions that can compensate for the lack of resource and expertise that many a business has. They should be able to do deeper forensic analysis of elements to discover threats at the source or in their hiding places. And that’s the kind of total visibility that Progress offers through the conjunctive solutions of Flowmon and WhatsUp Gold. A member of the Progress family since a year now, Flowmon joined the portfolio when Progress acquired Kemp. Similarly, Progress received WhatsUp Gold, an already established product as part of the deal, with its acquisition of Ipswitch, Inc. in 2019.
Network Monitoring with Flowmon and WhatsUp Gold
At the recent Security Field Day event, Progress presented Flowmon and WhatsUp Gold. Technical Enablement Manager, Carol Holt covered the first part of the presentation where he discussed network monitoring and visibility and explained how the two solutions fit into that. Deep network visibility, he said, entails drilling down into the smaller pieces because the devil is in the details. He was later joined by Progress’s Senior Flowmon Sales Engineer, Jiri Krejcir who showed the solutions in action with a demo.
Progress’s Flowmon and WhatsUp Gold are two pieces of the puzzle that complete each other. Both network monitoring software, they are most effective when deployed in tandem because they each focus on a certain part of networking. While Flowmon takes care of network and security monitoring, WhatsUp Gold takes over the infrastructure and application side of monitoring thus giving companies the superpower of total visibility. Together, they capture telemetry information that includes bandwidth usage, performance status, threat behavior, flagging down anomalous activities and accelerating root cause analysis and time to insight with ready-made, instant analytics.
Saving significant investigation time, Flowmon performs tracing and analysis of root causes and reports incidents back to the teams in real-time. But alerts without troubleshooting recommendations are only partly processed information. So it tags alerts with proactive resolutions so that the NetOps and SecOps teams are updated about any anomalies, errors and bottlenecks in the system and can attend to them swiftly. Thus, no time is wasted between knowing and resolving. Internally processing the feeds from its eyes and ears, Flowmon automatically generates itemized analytics of metrics such as performance, availability, capacity and forensics. All audit trails can be saved for future reference.
Progress’s WhatsUp Gold looks into the statuses and performance of all network assets starting with devices and applications to servers, both in the cloud and on-prem and reports them back to the involved teams. Users can manage logs and configurations, map the network visually, keep a tap on the performances of applications and the network, scrutinize traffic and sundry all from its single interface. Through WhatsUp Gold, all log data can be stored anywhere.
When visibility is synonymous with security, enterprises need powerful solutions like Flowmon and WhatsUp Gold that can magnify every threat, every anomaly in the environment. They constantly scope the network and zero in on threats as soon as they are uncovered, thus closing the loop with automation and actionable analytics. Capable of performing finer forensics and by sharing the reports with the operators, they provide the teams ready intelligence on what to lock down and how to do it. That way, these solutions not only maximize network visibility and make the jobs of NetOps and SecOps people easier by eliminating serial tasks and enabling prompt troubleshooting and threat elimination, but also enhance the quality of customer experience.