IT Week is always on the look out for nifty network management tools that can save you time or have a different way of doing things. So I was punted the name of a firm offering a free suite of network management tools called PacketTrap Networks. After downloading the near 7MB executable and installing it, if you want to run it you have to create a PacketTrap account – standard stuff, your name, email address, company name etc.
On the site itself are testimonials from people who have used PacketTrap’s pt360 Tool Suite – but one from Yoko Ono (see piccy)? Has Yoko Ono become a network admin? Well she has wrestled with some of mankind’s most intractable problems – world peace – for instance. Does network management qualify as one of the world's most intractable problems? Depends whose network I suppose. A nice spoof – and there are also testimonials from Jean-Paul Sartre and one PFC Gump.
PacketTrap will be releasing a Pro version in Q1 2008 with extra functionality, like Cisco configuration management, better application and server monitoring, more open source and third party integration, better network discovery and syslog server capabilities.
Firing up the PacketTrap's free pt360 suite after you've got your activation code reveals a fairly simple and clean interface, with a collection of 13 tools. Three types of 'pinging' tools – standard ping scan, enhanced ping, and graphical ping. After these there's a DNS Audit and Whois tools, before the scanning tools for port, MAC, simple network management protocol (SNMP) and Windows management instrumentation (WMI). You can also use the Wake-on-LAN tool to boot up a device and monitor it and there's also a Traceroute tool and a TFTP server. Finally the Traffic Jam tool lets you generate network traffic to a device on a selected port with a specific protocol. All in all, a nifty set of tools – even Yoko rates them.
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