Why choose PRTG network discovery tool
- 3 advantages of taking stock of your network with a network discovery tool
- What network discovery & monitoring looks like in PRTG
- 5 reasons why our PRTG network discovery tool is the best choice for you
- How the PRTG auto-discovery works
- Network discovery methods & tools compared
- PRTG can do much more than discovering your network
- Automatic network discovery: FAQ
3 advantages of taking stock of your network with a network discovery tool
How do I find all my network devices? Sooner or later, every administrator must tackle this question. In general, there are three reasons for taking stock of your network with a network discovery tool:
How PRTG defines sensors
In PRTG, “sensors” are the basic monitoring elements. One sensor usually monitors one measured value in your network, e.g. the traffic of a switch port, the CPU load of a server, the free space of a disk drive. On average you need about 5-10 sensors per device or one sensor per switch port.
Having a full network inventory
Administrators need to make regular inventories of their company’s IT equipment and infrastructure. Such a network inventory is not only great for getting an overview of the entire network, but also for security reasons: With a comprehensive inventory you can see, for example, if unwanted private devices are connected to your network
Planning a network expansion
When a company grows, so does its network. Many administrators are faced with the task of gradually expanding their IT infrastructure. Here, network devices must be routed correctly to ensure that the network remains stable and efficient. A network discovery tool like Paessler PRTG can help check the network setup and find possible bottlenecks, for example.
Keeping an eye on network costs
It is increasingly important that all costs associated with network devices, maintenance, and licenses are documented, as accounting departments want to keep an eye on the cost of IT equipment and infrastructure as well. To do so, administrators must have an overview of existing hardware and software. Taking stock of the network with a network discovery tool can help here.
PRTG is compatible with all major vendors and manufacturers
5 reasons why our PRTG network discovery tool is the best choice for you
Automatically create an inventory of your network
The auto-discovery feature in PRTG makes it easy to take stock of your entire network. After the installation of PRTG, for example, it automatically finds all the network devices within an IP address range and integrates them into your monitoring setup. What’s more: PRTG also intelligently creates suitable sensors for monitoring the discovered devices.
Discover new devices on demand or on schedule
You can always start the automatic network discovery on demand after you added new devices to your network. Or you set a schedule to run the network scan automatically every day, week, or month. If there are new devices, PRTG will notify you accordingly. This way, you’ll be able to keep a constant eye on what’s going on in your IT infrastructure.
Benefit from distributed network device discovery
If your network is distributed over multiple remote locations, PRTG has got you covered as well. Just install so-called PRTG remote probes in each of the respective locations, then let the automatic network discovery do the initial monitoring setup for you. A great thing: you can still view and manage the discovered devices as well as your entire monitoring from a central dashboard.
View all your network devices in one place
No matter if you let the auto-discovery in PRTG do the first monitoring setup for you or if you add network devices and PRTG sensors manually – our network discovery tool centrally displays your entire network as an easy-to-read device tree structure. A traffic lights system tells you at one glance if everything is running as it should, or if there are any concrete issues that need your attention.
Monitor your entire network around the clock
PRTG not only discovers your network devices for you – it also monitors your IT infrastructure round the clock 24 hours a day, 365 days per year. If there is an issue, PRTG notifies you at once via custom alerts, using the notification method of your choice. This way, you can always rest assured that if there is no alert, everything in your network is working as expected.
Automatic network discovery at a glance – even on the go
PRTG is set up in a matter of minutes and can be used on a wide variety of mobile devices.
What network discovery & monitoring looks like in PRTG
Diagnose network issues by continuously monitoring your ERP system. Show database, business process & performance metrics in real time and visualize data in graphic maps & dashboards to identify problems more easily. Gain the visibility you need to troubleshoot ERP monitoring issues.
How the PRTG auto-discovery works
Use the auto-discovery feature in PRTG to quickly and conveniently detect all your network devices. PRTG automatically sets up devices in the network tree and then adds suitable monitoring sensors to them within minutes. Here’s how it works in 3 steps:
PRTG uses ping to find all the devices located within the specified IP address range and identifies the respective device types using protocols like SNMP, WMI, and more. It then uses device templates to automatically add the devices it found to the central dashboard that displays the network in the form of a hierarchical tree structure.
Depending on the device type, the manufacturer, and the protocols that the respective device supports, PRTG automatically adds suitable sensors for monitoring the device.
Video tutorial: Auto-discovery groups
Watch this tutorial to learn how to use auto-discovery groups and device templates.
Network discovery methods & tools compared
Checking availability via ping & the command line
Many sysadmins use the command line as it’s still the quickest way to check whether a target device is available, for example, via the ping command “ping IP ADDRESS”. You can repeat the ping command manually or use a loop to ping an entire range of devices.
The alternative – finding, installing, and getting the hang of a suitable network discovery tool – takes a whole lot longer. However, if you want to have a full network inventory, using the command line can never replace a user-friendly network discovery software.
Discovering specific network devices in Windows
In Windows, the network discovery is used to find and enable a specific network device, for example, a network printer. It’s up to the sysadmin to manually add individual devices to the network. Windows offers a variety of network profiles with individual enabling options for this process.
However, adding network devices is cumbersome and there is no option to get a full network inventory or overview of your network topology. Here, using a network scanner or network discovery tool makes more sense.
Scanning IP ranges with dedicated network scanners
Many sysadmins search for simple network scanners or tools that are fully dedicated to network discovery tasks. In such cases, it’s not about setting up a network inventory for monitoring, for example, but discovering available devices as quickly and easily as possible.
Free network scanners like Angry IP Scanner are a good solution if you’re not interested in monitoring but would rather just perform a quick scan of your network – making use of an easy-to-understand user interface instead of reading command-line results.
PRTG can do much more than discovering your network
Many networks include routers from a variety of different manufacturers. Some routers are used more heavily than others and some might even be outdated. PRTG monitors all your routers from one central location – there’s no vendor lock-in. It not only checks network traffic and bandwidth, but also the health of each device, for example, fan status, temperature, or power supply status.
Switches are vital network interfaces. If just one switch fails, this can have a serious impact on your network connections and lead to disruptions in your entire network. As with routers, our software is compatible with the most popular switch manufacturers, including Cisco, HPE, Juniper, Dell, and more. With PRTG, you can monitor all your switches from one central location.
Mail servers, database servers, virtual servers, web servers: if a server crashes, this can quickly get business critical. With PRTG, you can monitor every aspect of your servers, be it server hardware or server traffic. In the event of an issue, PRTG immediately alerts you so that you can react even before a malfunction occurs and prevent noticeable disruptions and downtime.
VoIP is extremely popular. But why does it seem to always be crashing? The reason may be poor quality of service (QoS). When using VoIP, you need a monitoring tool that can keep an eye on latency, packet loss, and jitter, and alert you if something is not working as expected. PRTG measures and monitors your QoS and helps you make necessary improvements.
Firewalls play a very important part in your network security. As such, they always need to be up-to-date and must never be disabled. PRTG is perfect for monitoring your firewalls. It not only checks for available firewall updates and verifies whether such updates were installed in your system, but also notifies you immediately if a firewall malfunctions.
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Automatic network discovery: FAQ
Automatic network discovery refers to the process of identifying and mapping devices, resources, and services within a computer network without requiring manual intervention. It involves using specialized tools or protocols to scan and analyze the network infrastructure to identify active devices, their IP addresses, network topology, and available services.
The goal of automatic network discovery is to provide network administrators with an accurate and up-to-date view of the network environment. By automatically discovering network devices, administrators can effectively manage and maintain the network, troubleshoot issues, ensure security, and optimize performance.
A network discovery tool is a software designed to assist in the process of automatic network discovery. It helps network administrators identify and map devices, resources, and services within a computer network. These tools use various techniques to scan, analyze, and gather information about the network infrastructure.
Available tools on the market vary in complexity, functionality, and deployment options, ranging from simple command-line utilities to comprehensive network management systems. The choice of a network discovery tool depends on the specific requirements, size, and complexity of the network being managed.
In PRTG, “sensors” are the basic monitoring elements. One sensor usually monitors one measured value in your network, for example the traffic of a switch port, the CPU load of a server, or the free space on a disk drive.
On average, you need about 5-10 sensors per device or one sensor per switch port.
We asked: would you recommend PRTG?
Over 95% of our customers say yes!
Paessler AG conducted trials in over 600 IT departments worldwide to tune its network monitoring software closer to the needs of sysadmins.
The result of the survey: over 95% of the participants would recommend PRTG – or already have.
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Paessler PRTG is used by companies of all sizes. Sysadmins love PRTG because it makes their job a whole lot easier.
Monitor your entire IT infrastructure
Bandwidth, servers, virtual environments, websites, VoIP services – PRTG keeps an eye on your entire network.
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|Network Monitoring Software - Version 188.8.131.523 (September 20th, 2023)|
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