Workspace Wizard

Net-Probe can do all the work of setting up a new workspace for you. This is the function of the 'New Workspace Wizard'. This wizard will scan and draw a network if you can give it the IP block ranges used by the network. It will check which IPs in the block ranges provided are used by devices, attempt to obtain the FQDN (Fully Qualified Domain Name) of the device, attempt to see if it can get a SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) response for the 'public' community and attempt to detect if more than one IP is used by the Host. Additionally it could, if requested, test to see if a connection to the computer's using PerfMon can be established and test any number of alarm scripts to determine if they may be applicable to the host. After this it will attempt to establish how the block ranges fit together and how the network reaches the internet, or how the internet reaches them, and finally, produce a network representation on a new Workspace, including graphs and alarms (where applicable).

The wizard starts by offering some information and requesting whether the scripts should be tested with a 'Basic Test'. The test will ensure that only scripts that stand a chance of working will be available for selection. For first time users this option is recommended.

Figure 5.2. Workspace Wizard - Start

Workspace Wizard - Start

Next, the network's block ranges will have to be entered, the proper block ranges are essential for this wizard to work. Any number of block ranges can be added. If a block range has been sub-netted then enter the subnets and not the full blocks. If a block range is only used by one host, as with some IP based web servers, then it may be best to leave the block range out. Only block ranges/subnets that are used by hosts should be included. The option to select which tests to attempt on all hosts found, can be selected. Only select service checks that can be found on the network. Each test selected will slow down the speed of the next step. The option to test for the ability to access and read data from the PerfMon of each host is also offered. Once again only select this option if it is applicable and desired, it also slows down the next step.

Figure 5.3. Workspace Wizard - Blocks and Checks

Workspace Wizard - Blocks and Checks

In the next step each IP of the block range will be tested for a ping response. If a response is obtained then the device will be tested for a response from a SNMP request (using the 'public' community). A PerfMon response and test script response will also be shown if requested. The community for each host can be modified and the host re-tested. Simply click on the community to edit it. A tick box will be present next to each responded IP. The wizard will attempt to detect if a host has multiple IP's assigned to it. All hosts will, by default, have the tick box checked. The exception is if the IP is thought to be a duplicate of an already ticked host. The wizard will be able to detect this reliably for hosts that are directly connected to the same block range as the monitoring computer, but not for block ranges that are further removed from the scanning computer's LAN. You can select to tick and untick the host, only ticked hosts will be drawn.

Figure 5.4. Workspace Wizard - Hosts

Workspace Wizard - Hosts

In the 'Next' step in the wizard, it will attempt to determine how the different blocks are connected together. This will be displayed on the 'tree' type layout. The system will assume, which for the most part will be true, that there is only one router/server present linking two IP block ranges (subnets). Clicking Next will take you to the last step in the wizard.

Figure 5.5. Workspace Wizard - Routes

Workspace Wizard - Routes

Here you will find 'Use Compact Layout' and 'Use as Host Test' options. The compact layout uses smaller graphs and elements, creating a smaller workspace. The 'Use as Host Test' lists all the checks that were selected as well as '<New Ping Script>' and '<None>' items. Only one check per host can be flagged as a 'Host Test'. The 'Host Test' failure should indicate that the entire computer is not functioning, not just the service. Usually a ping is used for this task. This check is used under some conditions in Action scripts. For now if you had selected a ping check in the earlier step, then select that, if not then select <New Ping Script>. The <New Ping Script> will add a ping check to every host detected. Clicking the 'Finish' button will start the drawing process.

Figure 5.6. Workspace Wizard - Finish

Workspace Wizard - Finish

Devices that have responded to a SNMP request will have a network interface graph drawn on the workspace and a check added for the interface. Graphs produced by the wizard will always use the 'Scale Indicator'. The wizard will attempt to determine the 'Max Value' of the interface being graphed, but on WAN interfaces, routers tend to advertise the maximum speed the interface can operate at and not the current speed the interface is set to (usually defined by the WAN link provider). So to get the indicator to show useful info, check the value guessed for 'MAX Value'.

Devices are assumed to be of workstation type except in the event that they link blocks together, in which case they are assumed to be routers. Pictures of this type will automatically be selected for the device. If the device responded to a SNMP request then the .system.sysDescr.o data is filled into the device's 'Note' property.

It is recommended that after the Wizard is complete, check the 'Max Value' of the interfaces, and select more appropriate images for the devices.

Also See: the section called “Failure Action Manager”, the section called “Scales ('Max Value' and 'Graph Axis Scales')”

Copyright (c) Warren Flemmer