Network management involves :
- monitoring and
It is important to identify :
- which parts of your network are dependent on one another
- the performance graphs on the network
- which devices are more prone to failure than others
- when devices should be replaced to prevent hardware failure
With industrial networks, many of these complicated tasks are done manually. Wouldn’t it be ideal to automate these management tasks with software? This will improve the efficiency of the network management process, and that’s exactly what network management software does.
Network Management Software
With NMS, it is possible to quickly assess the status of your most valuable asset – the network. Many networks today are so complex that if anything is amiss, it takes a long time to locate the problem. In this kind of situation, attempting to fix the problem without an accurate picture of what is wrong leads to *troubleshooting* in the dark. With proactive network monitoring, it is possible to locate problems before they become emergencies, and locate emergencies before they become catastrophes.
Administrators in most sectors have long enjoyed the benefits of network management software on enterprise networks. IT administrators can identify which services are most heavily used; when or where to add more resources; and how to maximise uptime. The problem is that most NMS software packages are not actually network management software in the true sense of the term, but are actually *enterprise network management software*. NMS is an excellent solution when used in the situations for which it has been designed.
NMS software must monitor the full scope of the network, including services, servers and routers. This includes high-level information such as whether or not the web server is up, or if the office has a connection to the outside world.
Industrial automation networks are on a different level, ‘closer to the ground’ of operations, with many switches and edge devices. Industrial engineers need accurate and prompt low-level information. NMS provides extraneous information about higher-level information that simply confuses the picture. As software originally created for a completely different field, NMS demands a skill set that will be unfamiliar and perplexing to automation engineers