• United States

How we did it

Dec 12, 20052 mins
Data Center

How we conducted our Clear Choice Test of framework-based network-management systems.

Our test environment consisted of six routed Fast Ethernet subnet domains and a T-1 Internet connection. We ran each product’s server components on four-way Compaq ProLiant ML570 900 MHz computers with Pentium III CPUs, 2G byte of RAM and six 18G byte SCSI RAID drives. The operating system was Windows 2000 Advanced Server with SP 4. Each subnet’s 25 client computers were a mix of Windows NT 4.0, Win 2000, Win 2003, Win 98, ME, XP, Red Hat Linux 7.0 and Macintosh platforms. The relational databases on the network were Oracle 8i, Sybase Adaptive Server 11.5 and Microsoft SQL Server 2000. Win 2000 and NetWare 5.1 shared files, while Internet Information Server, Netscape and Apache software served up Web pages. An Agilent Advisor protocol analyzer decoded and displayed network traffic.

We evaluated each product’s ability to manage, administer, update, monitor, report on, diagnose, troubleshoot, reset, reconfigure, audit (inventory) and secure network devices, server computers and client computers. Virtually all our testing took place across WAN links.

In our tests, we administered users, groups, servers, clients, routers, switches, remote storage and DSU/CSUs. We tested the sending of SNMP alerts, as well as the processing of incoming alerts. We produced reports to show device and computer status information, inventory results, network usage trends, security breaches, availability and uptime information, network baseline information and graphical maps of the network. We tested any special features the product offered, and we also looked for scalability, security, ease of use and task automation.

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