Many integrators we talk to are offering network management as the base tier of their client care programs. By doing so, they are setting themselves to OWN the network but also ensuring that the core of any of today’s integrated systems is functioning properly. This service leads to better performance, increased reliability, cost savings for the customer and increased efficiency for the integrator. So what is included in these network management packages? Well, today we’re just going to focus on one component and that is system monitoring and alerting.

The basics of network monitoring include check of Internet Service Provider (ISP) uptime, slow internet connections (latency) intermittent internet disconnects (packet loss), and Domain Name Server (DNS) checks. These checks ensure that the client is getting the service they require from the ISP to access services such as Pandora, Rhapsody, Netflix, Hulu or Apple TV. If there is a problem with any of the checks those services will not reliably work as expected or could result in a degradation of quality.

Beyond ISP monitoring you’ll also monitor the core of the system. This includes routers, switches, wireless access points, control processors, touchpanels, Power Distribution Units (PDU) and Uninterrupted Power Supplies (UPS). By maintaining the reliability and functionality of this core, you are taking steps to ensure that when the client needs to access any service, internal or external to their local network, that they can do so without trouble from any device in the home.

Finally, if the client’s budget allows, you can begin to add the “edge” devices in the home. These include items such as zigbee nodes, media extenders/players, PCs, network printers, Audio/Video receivers and more. These devices typically provide details such as online/offline (plugged, unplugged, dead), network latency (bad or slow connections) or dropped packets (network interference, bad equipment, bad configurations). Any of this information is useful in determining problems with the clients integrated system.

As you can see there is a lot of value in monitoring the core of the system, or “Digital Plumbing” as some refer to it as. Without this core things are prone to failure or degradation and troubleshooting blindly can be extremely difficult and time consuming. ihiji’s invision solution provides this base network management as the primary component of our solution so that you can be efficient and keep your clients happy while focusing on the items that are most meaningful to your business. What’s the best part of all of this? ihiji’s solution is extremely cost effective and easy to use – so you get more value for less!

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