Communications Blog • 5 MIN READ

Monitoring and troubleshooting Cisco switches and routers

Dave Murphy

Written by Dave Murphy

The business world, and indeed the world in general has become a smaller place. Thanks to local and wide area networks (LAN/WAN), unified communications is now the technology that has revolutionised enterprise organisations.

Cisco unified communications systems

Cisco is one of the world’s biggest players in the field when it comes to hardware in communication solutions. Cisco switches and Cisco routers constitute the majority of devices used in the UC infrastructure of most organisations. These include complex networks, often made up of over hundreds of switches and routers.

Switches create a network. Routers connect networks. An enterprise network can consist of a complicated variety of equipment and operating systems, including Windows and Apple computers. Unix systems, mainframes as well as related devices like smartphones and tablets are often all part of a tightly integrated enterprise network using different communication protocols.

So, what happens when one or more of these connectors decides to malfunction? It’s every IT department’s worst nightmare, which is why monitoring complex network systems is absolutely crucial to any organisation.

Scenario: An important video meeting has been scheduled with the CEO and executives of a large, international organisation, spanning three countries and three different time zones. There’s a problem with connectivity and after two attempts, it seems to work but the sound and video quality is subpar. Eventually one participant drops out altogether and two others experience error messages.

Running an organisation’s network without monitoring and troubleshooting equipment is like waiting for Armageddon - but in business terms, it can make Armageddon seem like a picnic in the park! Outages, downtime, network glitches and device failures can quickly create a catastrophic shift in an organisation’s bottom line.

Why has it happened? Which device, or devices are at fault? How can you prevent this from happening again? It clearly illustrates the importance of network monitoring and troubleshooting.

There are some fundamental capabilities to be expected from an enterprise-class network management solution. Monitoring Cisco equipment with Prognosis for UC and Prognosis for UC (SP edition) will ensure visibility across multiple ecosystems and enable the best possible solutions.

Benefits of a high-quality enterprise-class network management system


A slow network is frustrating, wastes time, and is often worse than when a network is down altogether. An efficient enterprise-class network management system monitors the performance of the network not only at the device level, but also toward application flow.

Root Cause analysis

Topology is important in network management when there are hundreds of devices in the network. You need a solution that not only tells you that something is wrong, but also shows where the problem is.


In a large majority of cases, problems on a network are the result of someone changing a device. This is why it’s important to integrate device configuration change into your network management solutions.

Proactive vs reactive management

An enterprise-class network management system warns you before you have an issue that could cause a system breakdown. For example, it will notify you of things like a malfunction on the secondary power supply on your core router, or significant changes in temperature.

There are dozens of reasons why network switches and routers malfunction; just Google the thousands of forums to see how common the problem is. But it’s UC monitoring and troubleshooting that enables IT departments to be able to locate, identify and rectify issues quickly and efficiently.

Prognosis network monitoring tools streamline the processes and operations of any enterprise-class network. They provide maximum visibility across your entire UC ecosystem from a single, clear, proactive vantage point.

How do your end-users really feel about your collaboration investment? Download the UCC Survey Report to find out more.
Download the UCC Survey Report

Topics: Communications Proactive troubleshooting Real-time monitoring Cisco

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