So you’ve heard about NetFlow. It’s exactly what you need. But then you find out that none of the network equipment you have supports it.

I hate having to tell customers that our product won’t work with their networks…

I think it’s partly because of the lost customer. However, I think it’s more because smaller networks mean smaller budgets, smaller budgets mean more affordable equipment and more affordable equipment means no Cisco devices. No Cisco devices means no NetFlow…

Knowing what NetFlow can do for a Network Admin makes me wish it was more easily attainable, but in the real world, amazing products warrant big price tags.

However, even though you may not have Cisco equipment, doesn’t mean all is lost.

If you are really interested in having full visibility on your network, then I invite you to keep reading since we at Plixer would like to offer you a couple alternatives.

Option 1:

If you are running with smaller Linksys routers, then maybe consider the firmware update from the company Brainslayer, called DD-WRT. This Linksys firmware update allows options that previously, only higher end routers supported. One of those new features being flow record export. For more information, please refer to this great blog that highlights DD-WRT.

Option 2:

If you are using any other devices other than the Cisco or Linksys brands, then this might be an acceptable alternative.

Now even though your devices may not be able to export flows in themselves, what if we were to introduce something that could take your traffic and mold it to export as NetFlow? This is exactly what the nProbe software offers.

With nProbe, just install this application on a local Linux server and direct your traffic through the server itself. With nProbe configured and running, it can then export NetFlow record summaries of your traffic to a local NetFlow collector, such as Scrutinizer. nProbe may be a great option for a small business that does not want to purchase new equipment in order to take advantage of NetFlow.

For more information about either option, feel free to take a look at the products on their websites. The extra effort required to get these products running can produce fantastic returns in network visibility.

Ryan Slosser author pic

Ryan Slosser

My name is Ryan. I work in development here at Plixer. I mostly deal with hardware deployment. I enjoy kayaking and fishing during the summer and skiing in the winter. People can count on me and I always give 100% unless I'm donating blood.

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