Network Packet Brokers

A new approach to network packets

Problem: Complex networks are difficult to secure and troubleshoot

Network monitoring and security tools are critical to tracking network behavior and identifying anomalies. But as traffic volumes explode and organizations turn to the cloud, encrypt traffic, and expand network virtualization, the jobs of securing these complex networks and effectively troubleshooting and monitoring them has become extremely challenging. Unfortunately, new tools can add even more layers of complexity to the network, diminishing your return on investment in security and performance solutions. To help ensure network security and protect tech investments, many enterprises, government agencies, and service providers are looking for a new way to gain complete visibility into their network and efficiently distribute only the traffic needed to specialized tools.

Solution: transforming it security and availability with intelligent visibility

This is where the next level of visibility solutions, network packet brokers (NPBs), enter the scene. An NPB (also called packet broker, or monitoring switch) can be extremely useful. These devices filter traffic to send only the right data to the right tool. Packets are aggregated and filtered from Layer 2 through to the application layer. Duplicate packets can also be removed and sensitive content stripped before the data is sent to the monitoring tools if that is required. This provides a better solution to improve the efficiency and utility of your monitoring tools.

Ixia’s NPBs deliver an innovative approach to handling and manipulating network packets, offering end-to-end network visibility, and providing line rate, zero-loss traffic distribution to monitoring devices and security tools. The result:  enabling efficient and effective network troubleshooting and threat detection with a compelling ROI.

Ixia’s portfolio of compact, hardware-based, rack-mounted appliances intelligently distribute and load balance traffic flow to your specialized network and security tools. This solution provides a more granular view of how the network is performing and possible issues or security threats, with insight all the way to the individual application and end user. Leveraging Ixia NPBs, you can expect your network technologies to become more effective with troubles spotted and fixed faster, even as tools and traffic grow.

The graphic below illustrates key functionality found in the Ixia portfolio of NPBs. 

Network packet brokers

Chad Deeds, Network Administrator, Texas Farm Bureau Insurance

Source: TechValidate. TVID: 775-647-501

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Key features

Aggregates monitored traffic from multiple links and segments
Deep packet inspection and filtering grooms traffic to relieve overburdened monitoring tools
Load-balances traffic across a variety of tools
Regenerates traffic to multiple tools
Time stamping and data masking aid in compliance and working with sensitive data
Extended burst protection, available with the Advanced Feature Module, offers traffic management and protection to online businesses subject to bursts of actvity
Provides SSL decryption for greater insight, including all traffic
Integrated Advanced Threat Intelligence Processor (ATIP) module, included with the Vision Series of NPB's to enable access to actionable metadata and insight into applications, including your mission-critical custom apps
Installs, configures, and sends clean traffic to appliances in less than 30 minutes