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The Ultimate Net Monitoring Tool €? Semantic Traffic Analyzer

Zeek is a passive, open-source network traffic analyzer. Many operators useZeek as a network security monitor (NSM) to support investigations ofsuspicious or malicious activity. Zeek also supports a wide range of trafficanalysis tasks beyond the security domain, including performance measurementand troubleshooting.

The Ultimate Net Monitoring Tool – Semantic Traffic Analyzer

When looking at data derived from the network, there are four types of dataavailable to analysts. As defined by the network security monitoring paradigm, thesefour data types are full content, transaction data, extracted content,and alert data. Using these data types, one can record traffic, summarizetraffic, extract traffic (or perhaps more accurately, extract contentin the form of files), and judge traffic, respectively.

Zeek can also easily carve files from network traffic, thanks to its fileextraction capabilities. Analysts can then send those files to executionsandboxes or other file examination tools for additional investigation. Zeekhas some capability to perform classical byte-centric intrusion detection, butthat job is best suited for packages like the open source Snort or Suricataengines. Zeek has other capabilities however that are capable of providingjudgements in the form of alerts, through its notice mechanism.

After Zeek 2.0, the project enjoyed tremendous growth in new deployments acrossa diverse range of settings, and the ongoing collaboration between ICSI (co-PIRobin Sommer) and NCSA (co-PI Adam Slagell) brought a number of importantfeatures. In 2012, Zeek added native IPv6 support, long before many enterprisenetworking monitoring tools. In 2013, NSF renewed its support with a secondgrant that established the Bro Center of Expertise at ICSI and NCSA, promotingZeek as a comprehensive, low-cost security capability for research andeducation communities. To facilitate both debugging and education, (formerly was launched in2014. This provided an interactive way for users to test a script with theirown packet captures against a variety of Zeek versions and easily sharesample code with others. For Zeek clusters and external communication,the Broker communication framework was added. Last, but not least, theZeek package manager was created in 2016, funded by an additional grantfrom the Mozilla Foundation.

We built Retrace to address the need for a cohesive, comprehensive developer tool that combines APM, errors, logs, metrics, and monitoring in a single dashboard. When it comes to log management tools, they run the gamut from stand-alone tools to robust solutions that integrate with your other go-to tools, analytics, and more. We put together this list of 52 useful log management tools (listed below in no particular order) to provide an easy reference for anyone wanting to compare the current offerings to find a solution that best meets your needs.

EventTracker provides its customers with business-optimal services that help to correlate and identify system changes that potentially affect the overall performance, security, and availability of IT departments. EventTracker uses SIEM to create a powerful log management environment that can detect changes through concise monitoring tools, and provides USB security protection to keep IT infrastructure protected from emerging security attacks. EventTracker SIEM collates millions of security and log events and provides actionable results in dynamic dashboards so you can pinpoint indicators of a compromise while maintaining archives to meet regulatory retention requirements.

Nagios provides a complete log management and monitoring solution which is based on its Nagios Log Server platform. With Nagios, a leading log analysis tool in this market, you can increase the security of all your systems, understand your network infrastructure and its events, and gain access to clear data about your network performance and how it can be stabilized.

EventSentry is an award-winning monitoring solution that includes a new NetFlow component for visualizing, measuring, and investigating network traffic. This log management tool helps SysAdmins and network professionals achieve more uptime and security.

SolarWinds offers IT management software and monitoring tools such as their Log & Event manager. This log management tool handles security, compliance, and troubleshooting by normalizing your log data to quickly spot security incidents and make troubleshooting a breeze.

ALog SMASH is a top log management tool that collects log data used to monitor access to servers storing important information accessible through endpoints. ALog SMASH works a the server level and costs less to run than client PC log monitoring tools.

WhatsUp Gold Network Monitoring is a log management tool that delivers advanced visualization features that enable IT teams to make faster decisions and improve productivity. With WhatsUp Gold, you can deliver network reliability and performance and ensure optimized performance while minimizing downtime and continually monitoring networks.

nload is a command-line tool that checks traffic of the network and the bandwidth usage in real-time. It analyzes the in- and outgoing traffic using two graphs and provides additional information like the total amount of transferred data and minimum & maximum network usage.

Slurm is a Command-line network monitoring tool. This tool lets you monitor traffic on your network and display the statistics with an ASCII graph. Three different types of graphs are available on this tool.

It is an all-in-one performance monitoring command-line tool that all Linux system administrators must use. It is not limited to one particular system metrics rather focuses and gathers information on many other system resources like memory, network, sockets, CPU, disk, memory, NFS, processes, etc. collectl can run as a service to monitor remote machines or an entire server.

Netstat is one of the famous tools that all Linux(though also used in windows) users heard of or used for once at least. It is used to find out problems in the network and to analyze the traffic on the network. Both incoming and outgoing network connections are monitored. It tells you about the ports that are opened and also whether any program is listening to any ports or not.

Nagios is one of the most powerful Linux monitoring tools. Complete monitoring of Linux operating systems and distributions is provided by Nagios that includes operating system metrics, service state, process state, file system usage, etc. Attributes like CPU load, Memory usage, Disk usage, Logged in users, and Private Services like HTTP, FTP, SSH are monitored.

Security monitoring can incorporate data from tools that are not part of your application. These tools can include utilities that identify port-scanning activities by external agencies, or network filters that detect attempts to gain unauthenticated access to your application and data.

To address these issues, you can implement queuing, as shown in Figure 4. In this architecture, the local monitoring agent (if it can be configured appropriately) or custom data-collection service (if not) posts data to a queue. A separate process running asynchronously (the storage writing service in Figure 4) takes the data in this queue and writes it to shared storage. A message queue is suitable for this scenario because it provides "at least once" semantics that help ensure that queued data will not be lost after it's posted. You can implement the storage writing service by using a separate worker role.

IT monitoring employs three fundamental layers. The foundation layer gathers data from the IT environment, often using combinations of agents, logs, APIs or other standardized communication protocols to access data from hardware and software. The raw data is then processed and analyzed through monitoring software. From this, the tools establish trends and generate alarms. The interface layer displays the analyzed data in graphs or charts through a GUI dashboard.

Although the need for IT monitoring is ubiquitous, monitoring approaches have proliferated and diversified through the years. This has yielded an array of tools focused on specific aspects of monitoring, ranging from the fundamental IT infrastructure, the network, the application and even the user experience (UX). Regardless of the monitoring type, the goal is generally to answer four essential questions:

As organizations embrace off-premises compute environments, infrastructure monitoring has expanded to include remote and cloud infrastructures. Although cloud monitoring has some limitations, PaaS providers often allow infrastructure visibility down to the server and operating system level, including processors, memory and storage. Some native tools let IT managers dig into the details of log data. Still, public cloud infrastructures are shrouded by a virtualization layer that conceals the underlying physical assets.

Network monitoring. Servers and storage have little value without a LAN and WAN (such as the internet) to connect them, so network monitoring has evolved as an important IT monitoring type. Unique devices in the network, including switches, routers, firewalls and gateways, rely on APIs and common communication protocols to provide details about configuration, such as routing and forwarding tables. Monitoring tools yield network performance metrics -- such as uptime, errors, bandwidth consumption and latency (response time) across all of the subnets of a complex LAN. It is challenging to find a single network monitoring tool to cover all network devices and process metrics into meaningful intelligence.

Another reason network monitoring is a separate branch of the IT monitoring tree is security. A network is the road system that carries data around an enterprise and to its users. It is also the principal avenue for attack on the organization's servers and storage. That makes it essential to have an array of network security tools for intrusion detection and prevention, vulnerability monitoring, access logging and so on. Today, the notion of continuous security monitoring relies on automation. It promises real-time, end-to-end oversight of the security environment, alerting security teams to potential breaches.


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