PRTG Network Monitor 13.2 from Paessler


As network monitoring gets ever more sophisticated many products are struggling to cope with the increasing number and diversity of devices to be monitored as well as the volume of data generated. This can result in web console performance issues but Paessler has bravely tackled this head on by completely rewriting the front-end of its PRTG Network Monitor. It is much faster.
With the move to HTML 5, PRTG v13.2 introduces the concept of a Single Page Application (SPA) using pure AJAX. This significantly reduces page reloads and reparsing of CSS, HTML and JavaScript as only elements are refreshed instead of entire web pages. Paessler has redesigned the PRTG dashboards to make them more informative, added layer pop-ups to retain the work context and refreshed sensor overviews with graphical displays of gauges. You can compare values from multiple sensors in a single page and QR codes are added for quick access via a mobile.
There's more, because PRTG can find unexpected network interconnections using heuristics to detect similar sensor data. By matching sensors showing similar behaviour such as bandwidth consumption, it highlights interactions between devices that can aid network planning and show potential security issues. Installation was a cinch taking us two minutes to load PRTG onto a Fujitsu Esprimo AMD Athlon desktop running Windows 7. A Configuration Guru gets you out of the starting blocks by helping with initial setup and network discovery. The process is very thorough as PRTG found all our Windows Server 2008 R2 and 2012 systems, Windows 7 and 8 PCs, switches, printers and NAS appliances, plus our Hyper-V and VMware hosts. PRTG adds sensors for every entity it finds and although these get used up quickly you can easily weed out those you don't need and return them to a pool for use elsewhere.
We can safely say that the new web interface is significantly faster than its predecessor. Selecting a device from the main dashboard instantly loaded up a new overview page with a group of gauges at the top and a complete list of all assigned sensors below. The new device gauge display can be customised simply by selecting a sensor from the list below and changing its priority. If you have the sensor comparison feature enabled, PRTG adds an extra table to the device view highlighting sensors on other devices that are showing similar values.
As we travelled though the new interface we found that, no matter what view we selected, it was loaded with virtually no delay. For example, our 48-port HP Gigabit switch had 66 sensors assigned to it and the device view loaded all graphs and tables in under a second.
There are few devices that will escape PRTG's gaze as Paessler offers over 160 sensor types ranging from SNMP and WMI, to databases, mail servers and Exchange. A feature that makes PRTG even better value is its inclusion of sensors for Hyper-V, Citrix XenServer and VMware as standard, and not as expensive options.
Problem alerting features are extensive and PRTG uses sensor triggers to issue notifications using a variety of methods. Values for individual sensors can be set at any level of the PRTG hierarchy and triggers are provided for device, state or speed changes, traffic volume levels, and threshold breaches.
Basing prices purely on the sensor count and not monitored devices or modules, makes the Paessler PRTG Network Monitor very good value for SMBs and enterprises alike. It's capable of presenting a lot of easily interpreted information using a single screen and the new web console's lightening quick responses makes network monitoring a pleasure, instead of a chore.
Product: PRTG Network Monitor 13.2
Supplier: Paessler AG
Tel: +49 911 93775 0
Web site: www.paessler.com 
Price: Licenses start at £253 excluding VAT

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