Corvil claims to minimize network latency

New box of tricks.

Network monitoring developer Corvil has claimed that its latest devices not only measure network latency and work out where in your network it's coming from, but they then advise on how to reconfigure your switches and routers for best application performance and lowest latency.

The technology, called CorvilNet 4.0, is an update to an existing system which adds end-to-end visibility of traffic at microsecond level, the ability to characterize individual applications, and support for 10 Gigabit Ethernet, said Corvil CEO Donal Byrne.

"We go in and instrument the network with appliances, then observe the traffic and provide programming data for the routers and switches, for example to get the right QoS policies in place," he said.

Byrne added that a common problem in dispersed networks is dynamic congestion, such as when traffic from a Gigabit LAN hits a 256kbit/s WAN, and immediately overwhelms the router's buffer.

"It's often people upgrading the data center network and forgetting the access side, so the speed mismatch increases and it creates bottlenecks," he said. "You can fix it by changing the QoS or by bandwidth shaping - once you can see the phenomenon. In general, what we do is very complementary to WAN optimization."

The Dublin-based company's technology combines the ability to observe network traffic with real-time QoS analytics. It also records network activity into a 20 second rolling buffer, which can be captured for investigation if triggered by a pre-programmed exception.

Its ability to understand the needs of the application and work in real-time is what sets CorvilNet apart from the application performance management tools offered by the likes of HP/Mercury, IBM and OpNet, Byrne claimed. He added, "Versus NetScout, Network Instruments and so on, there's our diagnostic approach."

Corvil already has customers for earlier versions of the appliance, including the London Stock Exchange and a large U.K. building society.

The company said its list pricing ranges from US$7,000 for a low-end appliance with a single Gigabit port to US$180,000 for the largest model, which sports two 10 Gigabit connections.

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