Network management is defined as monitoring, testing, configuring, and troubleshooting network components to meet a set of requirements defined by an organization. These requirements include the smooth, efficient operation of the network that provides the predefined quality of service for users. To accomplish this task, a network management system uses hardware, software, and humans.
Functions of Network Management System
- Configuration Management
- Fault Management
- Performance Management
- Security management
- Accounting management
A large network is usually made up of hundreds of entities that are physically or logically connected to one another. These entities have an initial configuration when the network is set up, but can change with time. Desktop computers may be replaced by others; application software may be updated to a newer version, and users may move from one group to another. The configuration management system must know, at any time, the status of each entity and its relation to other entities. Configuration management can be subdivided into two parts reconfiguration and Documentation.
It Falls into two categories.
i) Reactive Fault Management
A reactive fault management system is responsible for detecting, isolating, correcting, and recording faults. It handles short-term solutions to faults.
ii) Proactive Fault Management
Proactive fault management tries to prevent faults from occurring. Although this is not always possible, some types of failures can be predicted and prevented.
It is closely related to fault management and tries to monitor and control the network to ensure that it is running as efficiently as possible.
Security management is responsible for controlling access to the network based on the predefined policy.
Accounting management is the control of users' access to network resources through charges. Charging does not necessarily mean cash transfer; it may mean debiting the departments or divisions for budgeting purposes. Today, organizations use an accounting management system for the following reasons:
- It prevents users from monopolizing limited network resources.
- It prevents users from using the system inefficiently.
- Network managers can do short- and long-term planning based on the demand for network use.