BBC - Network Monitoring

Project Requirements
The BBC required an enterprise level diagnostic tool. This would summarize the vital health signs of all servers and routers on the BBC's network. It would also provide detailed diagnostic information of the WAN routers at the OSPF level, to provide a full enterprise detailed view of the network. Further requirements included the need to integrate with the BBC asset management system to validate host network addresses and system configuration information. Finally it needed to be simple and intuitive, easy to use for both the experienced network staff and less experienced help desk staff

The Solution
Layer3 created a state of the art diagnostic tool which satisfied all the above requirements and integrated seamlessly with the BBC Asset Management system. Based on our Network Object Remote Monitoring technology with custom modifications specific to the BBC, the system has become known as Reithmon.

The system comprises a web interface to give secure and simple access to reports and configuration of the system. Details of servers and routers are automatically imported to the Reithmon system from the Asset Management system. This information is verified against the devices themselves to ensure the integrity of both Reithmon and the Asset Management system data. Exception reports are generated and the feedback is returned to both the Network Management and Asset Management/Change Control teams on a daily basis.

Reithmon system uses SNMP to monitor the state of all the above servers and routers. Configuring a device to be monitored is as simple as adding an IP address to either the Asset Management system, or to Reithmon itself. Reithmon automatically takes care of assessing new devices and calculating their position and function within the BBC Enterprise.

A polling engine built into the Reithmon system contacts all systems on a regular basis. The polling gathers vital health signs (configuration, memory, CPU, disk and interface utilization) and collates the information into a series of online graphs and tables.

Reports are generated monthly on a programmable basis. These are used to measure success of operation against the required SLA as defined in the Asset Management system. Real time summaries are also available via the web front end.

The Reithmon system is designed to be fault resilient and can fail over to a secondary server in the event of a hardware failure or disconnection from the main network.

Benefits
• £2,500,000 per year saved in network downtime.
• Full administration for multiple users (Administrator, Network Manager, or View Only)
• Complements and integrates with existing BBC systems, such as, Spectrum, Concorde Network Health, which all work at Layer 1 and Layer 2, where as Reithmon works at Layer 3.
• Low bandwidth network usage.