SolarWinds NPM Review

Network Performance Monitor (NPM) is the SolarWinds Orion entry in the monitoring and alerting systems market.


Valuable Features:

- Powerful network fault & availability management. - Mature SNMP-based network performance monitor; lets you add wireless, VoIP, and NetFlow monitoring support as needed; provides easily configurable custom alerts and reports. - NPM can also receive Syslog output and SNMP traps for error detection and alerting. - NPM’s alerting system is powerful, flexible, and relatively easy to use. - The product features modular pricing, so you can buy only the features you need.

Room for Improvement:

- New, web-based interface lacks some features of traditional GUI. - One of the problems I've had in the past, is building out a dependency structure.

Other Advice:

NPM uses Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) ping requests to gather basic connectivity and response-time information. It allows network devices that support this, to gather additional information, by using SNMP queries and Cisco IOS NetFlow. NPM can also receive Syslog output and SNMP traps for error detection and alerting. Add-on modules let Orion NPM monitor NetFlow devices, wireless appliances, and VoIP networks and also let NPM monitor more devices as your network grows. Whether you want basic enterprise network monitoring or a full suite of network diagnostic tools and monitors, I recommend Orion 9 for its full feature set and ease of use.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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