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What tools to use to diagnose network disconnections

Posted on 2007-11-19
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Last Modified: 2008-02-01
I have a network running on a watchguard VPN firewall with 2 24 port linksys managed switches. I have several remote locations connecting in to the watchguard device.
I have 3 centrally located servers, 1 is a Windows Domain server, 1 is a ScoUnix server and 1 is a Linux Server. I'm running Powerterm Plus on windows xp machines as well as Neoware Dumb terminals to connect to the Unix servers.
At this time we seem to be intermitentantly losing connection to Unix server.

I would like to start testing the network for this failure but I'm unsure of how to go about it and what tools to use.
I have created both a Linux and a Windows box with network testing software such as Cacti, Wireshark, Aipcap, netdoppler, commview.
I'm not sure if these are the tools I should be using for this problem or how to really use them well. I have only just started to learn about these things.
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Question by:marcum
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9 Comments
 
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Accepted Solution

by:
greenhacks earned 1500 total points
ID: 20313114
try to use ping and tracert as basic tools. tracert should tell you at which hop you are getting slow response.
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Author Comment

by:marcum
ID: 20313435
Let me clarify, I'm a beginner with complex network tools not with the basics. I've only just started to learn about the above tools.
The problem is intermittent, these tools are not going to give me the insight I need to make an educated desicion on replacing devices. I need to pole the switches and the adapters on the servers 24 hours a day for a week to come up with some quantifiable data to report to management.
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LVL 77

Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 20314536
I use IPMonitor (now NetGong):
http://netgong.tsarfin.com/
It will allow you to set up a scheduled series of pings, say once a minute, to multiple devices such as a local PCs/servers, routers, ISP gateways, and an Internet IP. It then logs the results and will warn you visually, audibly, and/or by e-mail if a connection is lost. By choosing what devices to monitor it can help you to determine at which point in the chain the break occurred.
It's free for 30 days, and quite affordable to buy, if satisfied.
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Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 20314546
PS- the log file can be viewed in attractive HTML format for presentation to management.
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Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 20353924
Marcum surprised you would accept the first answer as a final solution where you said; " these tools are not going to give me the insight I need to make an educated decision".
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LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:greenhacks
ID: 20355606
Robwill, if you read his question, all he need is those basic tools to troubleshoot.
think practically, if you want to check connectiviry issues, why you want to install tons of apps with tons of features.

Even i know all this advanced tools and how to use them. but this basic tools does the trick.
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LVL 77

Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 20355630
Not arguing that, just they stated these tools are not what they wanted.

Also ping and tracert only help you troubleshoot network issues at the current time. They are not tools you can run and log for weeks to diagnose intermittent connection issues to diagnose specific equipment failures. I have no problem with the grading just curious why an answer that was stated was unacceptable was chosen as an acceptable solution.
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LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:greenhacks
ID: 20355757
my apology, i missed the authors comments. your are right. that doesnt make sence giving me points in that case.
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LVL 77

Expert Comment

by:Rob Williams
ID: 20355778
No problem. It's not the points, as I say curious, as well as does the author have a proper solution yet. Not suggesting my answer was any better.
Cheers !
--Rob
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