Unboxing an Appliance for FlowView
by Team AppNeta on

So you've heard about PathView and FlowView, read some reviews, checked out our website, and you think they sound like they're just the bee's knees (and they are). You've talked to our excellent salesfolk, purchased an appliance and licenses, received your AppNeta login credentials, and now a box has shown up on your doorstep.

Your new appliance

If you've nabbed yourself an m22 it comes in a lovely box with our logo; all the rest will be delivered inside fabulously minimalist cardboard in a fetching shade of kraft.

flowview setup

Exactly what you'll find in the box varies with each appliance, however they all come with the cables necessary to get established with PathView Cloud. Since you're planning on installing your appliance for use with FlowView as well, you may need an extra ethernet cable on hand.

If your appliance is an r400 you have the option of using a 10Gbps connection from the back of the appliance. For that, you'd need to have an orange multi-mode optical fiber cable.

flowview setup

You may wonder, can your appliance run FlowView? Yes! There are some specifics to consider for particular appliance types, but the short answer is that all of our appliances are FlowView-capable.

Where should it go?

FlowView works by monitoring and classifying the data that moves through your network in real time. You want your appliance to tap into a location through which the traffic you're looking to monitor passes. This means things like trunk ports on access or aggregation switches, or router gateways -- basically, look for bottlenecks and borders.

flowview setup

The first step in setting up your appliance for FlowView up is to connect it to AppNeta. Connect your appliance to your network, using the port shown below.

flowview setup

Log into AppNeta. (We'll have emailed you login credentials during the purchasing process.) If this is your first appliance, you'll be prompted through the steps to installing it. If not, select an organization, navigate to Manage Appliances, and click Add Appliances.

Be sure to assign a FlowView license to the appliance!

FlowView connections

Once you've configured the appliance for AppNeta, you're ready to connect your appliance for FlowView. There are two different connection configurations, with two slightly different requirements:

  1. Inline, which places the appliance directly in the path of your data. This method makes use of the appliance's fail-to-wire bypass, which means that even if the appliance were to fail, traffic would be rerouted and your network connectivity downstream wouldn't suffer.

flowview setup

flowview setup

  1. Out-of-band, which uses port mirroring so that data is passed to, rather than through, the appliance. For inline you'll have to set up port mirroring on the switch or router to which you're connecting your appliance.

flowview setup

flowview setup

Two-way monitoring

If you want FlowView to be able to distinguish between inbound and outbound traffic in its metrics, there is one extra task to complete.

You need to tell your appliance which subnets are local to it. This happens in Web Admin -- the interface in which you interact directly with the appliance to complete administrative and configuration tasks. To access Web Admin for a particular appliance, enter that appliance's IP or hostname into the address bar of your browser, in the format "http://[hostname]": if you don't know your appliance's details, you can find them in Manage Appliances. The appliance's Web Admin password was defined when you configured your appliance.

Once you've accessed Web Admin:

  1. click on Appliance Configuration
  2. click on Traffic Direction Configuration
  3. click on Add Local Subnet for Traffic Direction
  4. enter the network address and a subnet mask for each local subnet

You'll still be perfectly able to use FlowView without defining your local subnets, however having the ability to distinguish between inbound and outbound traffic is a powerful tool.

View those flows

You're finished setup! Log back in to AppNeta and navigate to FlowView in the left menu. Activate FlowView monitoring by clicking 'Start FlowView'. Monitoring results won't show up for about five minutes after that, while the appliance collects enough flows for an initial report.

If anything seems awry, feel free to peruse the support portalfor more detailed instructions and answers, or call us up and talk to one of our awesome support folks.

Now go watch the data pour in, and bask in the pastel beauty of FlowView's traffic charts.

FlowView - Data Size

And if you want your own? Just ask!

Filed Under: Networking Technology, Performance Monitoring

Tags: bandwidth , features , flow analysis , FlowView , NPM , packets