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How can I monitor network traffic?

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Last Modified: 2013-12-07
I seem to have alot of traffic on my PC. We have a single subnet. On our network we have our domain server, application server which houses our payroll and our practice management system. We also a wireless network on the same subnet and have banned any use of any type of internet radio and other bandwidth sucking devices that might be used. Our phone system uses IP phones which is the only thing I can think of that would be sucking up alot of the bandwidth. Our performance just seems very slow and sluggish. Is there anyway I can monitor the network via some downloadable software to see what PC is causing the traffic jams, or if it is simply too much on that one subnet for our network to handle. We don't have any fancy switches, just your cheap 200$ jobs. If I should change the subnet, how should I group them, if i should seperate the phone system on its own subnet and break down the medical end on its own subnet and maybe the administrative end on its own too. What are your thoughts and opinions.

Windows 2003 Server and all the machines are XP SP2. We have one NT box on a seperate domain, same subnet though. That houses our email.
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Commented:
Hi
You can try Network Monitor , Wireless managemnt console from Start>run>MMC  . After installing the adminpack.msi , they will be already installed on your windows server 2003 .
Also enable logging and Auditing on the network resources you have suspect on.
These simple approaches are very simple , helpful if u have some sense and will cost you NO new hardware or software.
Good Luck !!
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Commented:
I don't know how big your network is, but breaking into subnets would help for starters. However, I would definitely put the IP phones into a different subnet. Also using VLANs would help quite a bit if you have the right type of switch for it. (If not, you might wanna consider it)

However, if you have a monitoring port configured on your switch, use a tool like Ethereal (http://www.ethereal.com) or PRTG (www.paessler.com/prtg) to capture and analyze traffic. Hopefully this will help you dig the to the solution of your problem.

Tell us about your company's structure and layout and we can probably come up with a good subnetting/VLAN scheme.
MarkLead Sales Engineer - Public Sector
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Commented:
If you were experiencing enough traffic congestion, your phone conversations would become very choppy. If you have don't have expensive switches, then you don't have a QoS system in place to grant priority to the phones - so they would suffer just as much.

You might be experiencing certain kinds of latency or congestion with certain endpoints. Some of these things you might be able to find by using a product like ethereal, or venturing into the "adventurous" stages by trying to set something like NTOP up.

Commented:
You can consider using ntop (http://www.ntop.org) to capture all the traffic flow on the network. The graphs will show which machine is generating heavy traffic. Thereafter you can zero down to that particular host. Sometime a bad network card on the network can also cause very high traffic.

Author

Commented:
Our network contains about 80PCs and 10 networked printers. We currently have one subnet. I was just curious as to how difficult it is to create new subnets on the network since this is something I haven't done on a network that has already been setup and running. Is it a difficult proceedure and will it cause all my PCs to be offline for an extended amount of time.

Author

Commented:
We are running a class C network. Network mask is 255.255.255.0 and our network runs on 10.0.0.x currently. I'm assuming I also have to create new gateways between the new subnets in order for them to talk to each other.
Try solarwinds.net...They have a good monitoring product.  You are going to have to invest in some vlans and qos.  
MarkLead Sales Engineer - Public Sector
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Commented:
Setting up a new IP Subnet has its own items that you need to be aware of and plan for. It can be done with minimal disruption as long as you evaluate the current environment, have the appropriate equipment, and plan accordingly to execute all of the steps.

How are you making out in regard to the original question: monitoring traffic? (which, BTW, will become more difficult than it is now if you add subnets)
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