NetQoS gives its SuperAgent more powers

NetQoS Wednesday will unveil the newest version of its application performance analysis appliance, which can scale to large enterprises and lets users via a Web interface access, view and customize reports based on the data collected by one or more appliances.

NetQoS added capabilities to SuperAgent 2.0, its flagship application response-time analyzer that now will let users view the performance data via a Web interface rather than pulling the information from a SuperAgent hardware device. Now users can log on to any workstation and pull up customized reports regarding the response times delivered by their networks' Web servers, application servers and even external ISP networks.

"SuperAgent will monitor traffic in your network, but the nice thing is it will also tell you about the traffic coming into your network," says Peter Jarvis, IT director at NC Soft Corp. Ltd., an Austin, Texas, subsidiary of a Korean online gaming company. Jarvis says SuperAgent lets him tell any of the 5,000 unique game subscribers per day if performance problems lie within the user's internal networks or in an external ISP. "In the network, everyone likes to point fingers, and the really nice thing is NetQoS lets you accurately notify the proper people and get problems resolved quickly."

Jarvis gets those results with a new feature that lets users define internal and external IP addresses for SuperAgent to monitor. Other new features include an alarm auto-baselining capability that lets users define thresholds specific to their networks. NetQoS also added quality-of-service reports that provide data rate per user, number of users and data loss rate.

SuperAgent is a hardware appliance that users plug into a mirror port on a switch. The box passively looks at the traffic from the switch to, say, a server farm and collects data regarding response time of the network, servers and applications. Users do not need to deploy any software agents on their networks.

Also new to SuperAgent is the option to view data from multiple performance analysis devices from one location, rather than having to tap into each box for the information. Users can install smaller boxes, or data collectors, around their network. Those boxes would feed back into a central management console that can be accessed by the same Web interface as the stand-alone unit.

NetQoS' SuperAgent competes with similarly performance monitoring appliances from companies such as Adlex Inc. and Niksun Inc.

Available now, SuperAgent 2.0 costs US$28,500. Purchasing SuperAgent in a multi-unit configuration consists of a management console and distributed data collectors. Pricing for the management console starts at $45,000, with data collectors costing $9,500.

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Denise Dubie

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