Blog :: Network Operations

Free Virtual NetFlow Collector

A good number of evaluators have been asking me what’s the best way to evaluate our free virtual Netflow collector. There is a growing trend of companies moving away from dedicated hardware to a virtualized environment. However, there are many options to create such a network. Windows has Hyper-V, which is part of the Windows Server OS, VMware has ESXi to, and KVM  meet these virtualization needs. Plixer supports all three of these virtual environments with our Free virtual NetFlow collector, Scrutinizer. Installation of our solution is as simple as deploying the appropriate package to the specific hypervisor.


What is a Hypervisior?

A Hypervisor  is a piece of computer software, firmware or hardware that creates and runs virtual machines. There are two types of Hypervisor builds,  bare metal and hosted.  A computer on which a Hypervisor is running one or more virtual machines is defined as a host machine. Each virtual machine under that host machine is called a guest machine. The Hypervisor presents the guest operating systems, or in this case the Virtual NetFlow Collector, with a virtual operating platform and manages the environment of the guest operating systems. The exciting part is that multiple instances of a variety of operating systems may share the virtualized hardware resources.


Here is a quick breakdown of the supported virtual environments for the Scrutinizer Virtual Appliance along with information on how to deploy them.

Microsoft Hypervisor to run the Virtual NetFlow CollectorMicrosoft Hyper-V

Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2012 is a hypervisor-based server virtualization server. Hyper-V Server is a dedicated stand-alone product that contains the hypervisor, Windows Server driver model, virtualization capabilities, and supporting components such as failover clustering. It has the same features as the Hyper-V role in the full version of Windows Server – including up to 320 logical processors per Hyper-V host, up to 4TB of physical memory, Live Migration, Storage Migration, Virtual Machine Replication, Clustering…etc.!  With Hyper-V Server 2012 R2, the hypervisor license is free.

Microsoft Hyper-V Download link

This link shows you how to install the Hyper-V on Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2 as well as on Windows 8 and Windows 8.1, Professional and Enterprise editions.
TechNet Install Guide

Microsoft Hyper-V Step by Step Install Guide 


KVM Hypervisior to run the Virtual NetFlow CollectorKVM

Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) is a virtualization infrastructure for the Linux kernel that turns it into a hypervisor. It was merged into the Linux kernel mainline in kernel version 2.6.20, which was released on February 5, 2007. KVM requires a processor with hardware virtualization extension. KVM’s parts are licensed under various GNU licenses


KVM Download link

KVM Information

How to install KVM

VMWARE to run the Virtual NetFlow CollectorVMWARE’s ESXi

VMWares’s  vSphere Hypervisor is a free bare-metal hypervisor that virtualizes servers so you can consolidate your applications on less hardware. ESXi (Elastic sky X Integrated) is also the VMware’s enterprise server virtualization platform. In ESXi, Service console is removed. All the VMware related agents and third party agents such as management and monitoring agents can also run directly on the VMkernel.


VMWare Download Link

VMWare Install Videos


Support for the Virtual NetFlow Collector

If you would like some help setting up our Virtual NetFlow Collector  or are interested in learning more about the Scrutinizer please give us a call. We would be more than happy to go through the steps with you and get the install running.