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Chapter: Network Programming and Management : Simple Network Management

Network Management System

A Network Management System is a collection of tools (hardware and software) for network monitoring and control.

Network Management System:


A Network Management System is a collection of tools (hardware and software) for network monitoring and control. It is the incremental hardware and software additions implemented among the existing network components. The software is used in accomplishing the network management tasks residing the host computers and communication processors ( bridges, routers, front end processors, cluster controller terminals etc)


Network Management Configuration:


The architecture of the network management system is shown in the next page.


Each node contains a collection of software devoted to the network management tasks referred as NME – Network Management Entity. Each NME performs the following tasks:


              Collect statistics on communication and network related activities.


              Store statistics locally


              Respond to commands from the network control center, including commands to :


o Transmit collected statistics to the network control center o Change parameter


o Provide status information (parameter values. Active links etc)

o   Generate artificial traffic to perform a test.

p   Send message to the network control center when local conditions undergo significant change.


At least one node in the network is designated as the network control host, or manager. IN addition to NME, the network control host includes a collection of software called network management application (NMA). NMA includes operators interface to allow an authorized user to manage the network. NMA responds to user commands by displaying information and / or by issuing commands to NME through the network. This communication is carried out through an application level network management protocol that employs the communication architecture in the same fashion as any other distributed application.

NMA : Network Management Application;         Appl: Application;


NME Network Management Entity  ;  Comm : Communication software ; OS Operating System.


Important points to remember are:

        Network Management software relies on the host operating system and on the communication architecture.


        Network Control Host communicates with and controls the NMEs in other systems.


         For maintaining high availability on the network management functions, two or more network control hosts are used. One may be collecting statistics or even idle where as other may be used for control. IF the primary network fails, the back ups system can be used.

Network Management Software Architecture can be  divided into three broad categories;


User Presentation software:


Interaction between user and NM Software takes place across user interface. Such interface allows the manager to monitor and control the network


Such interface has to unified user interface at any node regardless of vendor.

•Network Management Software:

This normally consists of three layers. Top layer consists of collection of network management application that provide the services of interest to users – like fault management, configuration management, performance management and security

• The small number of network management applications is supported by a larger number of application elements. There are the modules that implement more [primitive and more general purpose network management functions such a as generating alarms summarizing data etc. The application elements implements basic tools that are of use tone or more of the network management applications.

• Lowest level of management specific software is a network management data transport service. This module consists of a network management protocol used exchange management information among managers and agents and service interface to the application elements

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