This website was mentioned in Network Computing on April 3, 2003 in an article on MRTG.  Welcome! Click here for Serbo-Croatian language.

Network monitoring used to be the luxury of large corporation or ISPs with a 24 hours NOC (Network Operations Center). However today, network monitoring is a necessity for even the smallest IT shop. The problem with this new necessity is it takes time and costs money. Most IT departments are short on both.

The goal of this website is to provide tools and information that you can use quickly and to help you keep your costs of network monitoring under control. Most of the products are freeware and the few tools that do require a purchase are not budget busters. The software programs which require purchase are usually available for trial installations to help you fully evaluate their features before sending them your money.

You might think with a focus on freeware or low cost network monitoring tools, the choices would be limited and the software lacking features but this truly isn't the case. Many small (and a few large) software companies are producing quality software tools and are feature rich and easy to use.

To accommodate the masses, and specifically the smaller IT shops, many of the tools covered on are Microsoft Windows based. The tools offered here are made to run on Microsoft Windows. While many of the tools will run on Windows 95 or 98, the preferred machines would be Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, or Windows XP. The latter machines offer the ability to run software as a service. Many of the software packages integrate the ability to run as a service which can greatly enhance your ability to monitor your network safely and securely.

You might think it is short sighted to overlook many of the freeware (or open source) tools available for Linux. While there are many great available software packages available, many are only partially developed and almost all are very poorly documented and require the end user to invest a lot of time on trial and error configurations. It are these very reasons which make these tools unsuitable for small, time constrained IT departments.

That is not to say that a few of the software titles presented here are not cross platform compatible. This includes the most well known bandwidth graphing tool on the Internet - MRTG (Multi Router Traffic Grapher). This website is home to the MRTG for Dummies tutorial which has helped countless people set up MRTG on a Microsoft Windows computer.

For more information on how the products are reviewed, please check out the testing environment. The primary testing engineer (ok, the guy who does everything around here) works in a small IT shop with 3 desktop support staff members with himself as the sole Network and Systems Engineer. The responsibilities include managing a Microsoft Windows 2000 Domain, a Cisco PIX Firewall, Cisco Ethernet Switches, and Compaq Servers.

If you wish to submit your software for review or testing, please visit the Contact Info webpage for detailed information. If you are an end user and have found this information and website helpful, please visit the Appreciation webpage.

Please remember to bookmark this website as valuable information will be added as often as possible.