• United States
Neal Weinberg
Contributing writer, Foundry


May 20, 20042 mins
Data Center

* Voyence's proof of concept

Voyence begins a customer installation differently than most network vendors – it typically sends the customer a proof of concept, or PoC, document to gather as much information as possible about the network before shipping and installing the product.

Information gathered via the PoC document includes IP ranges that will be auto-discovered and network device information that includes vendor name, operating system version, interface type and protocols supported. Customers can have Voyence provide the necessary hardware (loaded with the VoyenceControl software before coming on-site), or Voyence can install it on-site with customer-purchased hardware.

VoyenceControl, which runs on Red Hat Linux, is part GUI, part database server and part device server. The software has a great deal of flexibility in how it gathers information from network components – SNMP, TFTP, telnet, XML, HTTP and SSH/SCP all are supported.

VoyenceControl integrates its alerts and configuration files with most of the major network management platforms, including HP OpenView, Tivoli, Unicenter, Micromuse Netcool, Remedy and other network applications. Information is exchanged with these systems via XML or CSV files. Scheduled events and complex sequences can be scripted, based on a proprietary Voyence scripting language.

VoyenceControl auto-discovered and identified all the devices in our network. It correctly identified some of the more troublesome devices that other products couldn’t identify properly.

Once devices were added to the inventory, configurations were retrieved and marked as baselines. VoyenceControl has superb editing support and wizards let you automate Cisco configuration tasks. Job control is a particularly important feature within VoyenceControl – when a change is made, the job must first be approved before it can be scheduled.

The system stands out because of its superb mix of simplicity and functionality. The GUI is easy to understand and manipulate for discovery and management, and it makes viewing information (model, operating system version and the like) gathered from your network devices easy. A feature that will be useful to those managing widely dispersed networks is VoyenceControl’s location integration with MapQuest – maps generated by the software can be logical and geographical. Diagramming capabilities are included, but this is a feature best left to systems such as HP OpenView. Future versions will incorporate Visio support, a software image library and extend integration with external network management systems.

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