Plixer Scrutinizer Network Traffic Analyzer Preview

Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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Plixer Scrutinizer Network Traffic Analyzer Preview

I've been testing Plixer Scrutinizer, a network traffic analyzer product for several weeks now. It's a great product that supports NetFlow used by popular routers and switches, including the popular Cisco ASA series of firewall/security routers, Checkpoint, Adtran, Riverbed, and more. It also supports Juniper Jflow and Juniper IPFIX, SonicWALL NetFlow and SonicWALL IPFIX and Citrix AppFlow. It also supports sFlow.

Having insights into your network is critical as time-sensitive network applications such as VoIP, video conferencing, and unified communications are deployed. Scrutinizer is an excellent tool to monitor your network infrastructure and pinpoint problems. Scrutinizer can be used to analyze and monitor the overall network health, determine top talkers, discover most popular ports being used, and more. Using the software I was able to easily create customizable reports to determine which hosts, applications, protocols, etc. that are consuming network bandwidth.

You might think of Scrutinizer as akin to the popular Wireshark network packet sniffer and indeed in some ways they are similar. However, Scutinizer is designed to monitor dozens if not hundreds of routers across LANs and WANs giving a more holistic view of a large corporation's entire network. Wireshark is great at monitoring raw packet traffic on a local network or even a single WAN link, but it isn't designed to monitor multiple remote routers. Essentially, packet analyzers like Wireshark are complimentary tools to NetFlow analyzers like Scrutinizer.

Scrutinizer supports a customizable interface that lets you add additional tabs and then add various widgets to these custom tabs. I hope to have a full-fledged review of Scrutinizer in a few weeks. But for now, here's a teaser screenshot of the user interface showing a report: (click for larger image)

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