NetEqualizer News: May 2013


May 2013

Greetings!

Enjoy another issue of NetEqualizer News! This month, we preview our upcoming integration of our Microsoft Excel Dynamic Real-Time Reporting Tool into NetEqualizer, discuss our new Hotel Management System Integration Offering, and feature a story from a happy NetEqualizer Customer. As always, feel free to pass this along to others who might be interested in NetEqualizer News.

A message from Art…
Art Reisman, CTO – APconnections

art_smallIn May, my thoughts turn to the BolderBoulder, a large 10K running race that I compete in each year. The race has 50,000+ participants, and is split into two, a “people’s race” and  a “professionals race” (International Team Challenge). I compete first and then watch the professionals race, which is usually won by someone from Ethiopia or Kenya, as professionals fly in from all over the world for this race. By May my goal is always to train hard, so that I am at my peak performance on Memorial Day for the run. I work hard to get ready, and plan to run a personal best this year!

We love it when we hear back from you – so if you have a story you would like to share with us of how we have helped you, let us know. Email me directly at art@apconnections.net. I would love to hear from you!

New! Our Hotel Management System Integration Offering

APconnections is excited to announce our Hotel Management System Integrated Offering (HMSIO). We have partnered with Global Gossip, LLC, a leader in the lodging managed network services industry, to offer an end-to-end network managed services solution for our hotel & lodging customers.
hmsio_data_sheet
We are combining strengths to offer NetEqualizer, the best in bandwidth shaping, with Global Gossip’s world class managed network services offering. We now can offer our hotel and lodging customers a full suite of capabilities to manage your wireless network, such as authentication, 24/7/365 support, cloud-based monitoring access, and network design services.

Hotel Management System Integrated Offering has grown organically from Global Gossip’s own use of NetEqualizers in its wireless services solutions in remote places all over the world, including many U.S. National Parks.For more details, check out our HMSIO Data Sheet, or contact us at:

sales@apconnections.net

-or-

toll-free U.S. (888-287-2492),

worldwide (303) 997-1300 x. 103


NetEqualizer Featured Customer

Every so often, NetEqualizer News features a customer who has benefited greatly from our technology and has told us about it!

This month, we feature Gordon College, and Russ Leathe, Director of Network and Computing Services.Here is what Russ had to say about his experience with NetEqualizer:

“We had an incident over the weekend I wanted to tell you about:
gordon_collegeOne of our web servers got hit with a ‘zero-day’ malware. We noticed our bandwidth was completely pegged even though our student population was on, or leaving for Spring-Break (so our bandwidth consumption should have been trending downwards, not upwards). We maintain over 100 servers, 95% of which are in a VM environment. Needless to say, finding the exposed culprit would be like finding the proverbial “needle in a haystack”.Alas, NetEQ to the rescue.
We used NTOP to discover our ‘Top Talkers’.  The Inbound bandwidth was saturated, which was unusual and we pinpointed it to one machine. We quickly wrote a bandwidth rule for that web-server and things returned to normal.
We found the malware and inoculated the server…all within an hour’s time. Normally, this could have taken hours or a few days.

Thanks again… for creating such a great solution for Higher ED!!”

Thanks Russ!

Coming Soon: Microsoft Excel Dynamic Real-Time Reporting Integration

One of our most popular unpublished tools that we release to customers who request it is our Dynamic Real-Time Reporting tool which sends data from your NetEqualizer to Excel so that you can monitor usage from your local PC.

The next generation of this software has arrived.

Coming soon, we will be releasing our built in version of this tool so that you can get the same benefits of its reporting features right on your NetEqualizer. It will require no setup and will be completely web based.

Here is a quick screenshot preview:

micro

You’ll be able to view active connections, connections which are bandwidth hogs, IP to country translation, and more!

This tool is free to customers with valid NetEqualizer Software and Support. If you are not current with NSS, contact us today!

sales@apconnections.net

-or-

toll-free U.S. (888-287-2492),

worldwide (303) 997-1300 x. 103


Best Of The Blog

You Heard it Here First, Our Prediction on How Video Will Evolve to Conserve Bandwidth

By Art Reisman – CTO – APconnections

Editors Note:

I suspect somebody out there has already thought of this, but in my quick Internet search I could not find any references to this specific idea, so I am taking journalistic first claim and unofficial first rights to this idea.

The best example I think of to exemplify efficiency in video, are the old style cartoons,  such as the parody of South Park. If you ever watch South Park animation, the production quality is done deliberately cheesy – very few moving parts with fixed backgrounds. In the South Park case, the intention was obviously not to save production costs. The cheap animation is part of the comedy. That was not always the case, the evolution of this sort of stop animation cartoon was from the early days before computer animation took over the work of human artists working frame by frame. The fewer moving parts in a scene, the less work for the animator. They could re-use existing drawings of a figure and just change the orientation of the mouth in perhaps three positions to animate talking.

Modern video compression tries to take advantage of some of the inherit static data from image to image , such that, each new frame is transmitted with less information.  At best, this is a hit or miss proposition.  There are likely many frivolous moving parts in a back ground that perhaps on the small screen of hand held device are not necessary.

My prediction is we will soon see a collaboration between production of video and Internet transport providers that allows for the average small device video production to have a much smaller footprint in transit.

Some of the basics of this technique would involve…

Photo Of The Month

IMG_0456
This picture of downtown Helsinki, Finland was taken on a recent visit to a customer site by one of our staff members.

Instant Bandwidth Snapshot Feature: Is this an Industry First?


One of the things that we have noticed with reporting tools lately, including ntop (the reporting tool we integrate), is that there is no easy way to show instant bandwidth for a user.  Most reporting tools smooth out usage over some time period, a 5 minute average is the norm.

For example, this popular Netflow Analyzer touts a 10 minute average, right from the FAQ on their main page it states:

Real-time Bandwidth Reports for each WAN link

As soon as Netflow data is received, graphs are generated showing details on incoming and outgoing traffic on the link for the last 10 minutes.”

No where can we find a reasonable bandwitdh monitoring tool that will show you instant, as of this second, bandwidth utilization. We are sure somebody will e-mail us to dispute this claim, and if so, we will gladly publish their link and give them credit on our BLOG.

When is an Instant Bandwidth Reporting Tool useful?

1) The five minute average reporting tool is of little use when a customer calls and tells you they are not getting their expected bandwidth on a speed test or video.  In these cases it is best to see the instant report while they are consuming the bandwidth, not averaged into a 10 minute aggregate.

2) If a customer has a fixed rate cap, and calls and reports that their VOIP is not working well.  The easiest and quickest way is to check what their consumption is during a VOIP call is to see it now. You don’t need a fancy protocol analyzer to tell them they are sucking up their full 1 megabit allocation with their YouTube video specifically. You just need to know that their line is clear and that they are consuming the full megabit at this instant, thus exonerating you (the ISP or support person) from getting drawn down in the dregs of culpability.

Here are some links to other reporting tools.

http://www.javvin.com/packet.html

Ip guard

Spiceworks

Here is a snapshot of our screen that allows you take an Instant Bandwidth Snapshot, showing the last second of utilization for a individual IP, Pool, or VLAN on your network.

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