To give IT managers using Cisco Systems CallManager IP telephony system a way to ensure compliance with SLAs (service-level agreements), Nimsoft is rolling its stand-alone software probe that provides reporting and diagnostics out of the shop Feb. 3.
Called Nimbus, the probe monitors all aspects of call-processing activity in VOIP (voice over IP), keeping an eye on everything from phones to gateways and memory utilization, and delivering real-time reports on key performance variables in the CallManager system.
It also provides data on the number of phones that are active, calls that are in progress and calls that were attempted and completed.
The probe can aggregate performance metrics and analyze them against SLAs to predict whether the service level will fall short, said Ken Vanderweel, marketing director at Nimsoft, adding that it will forecast a day and time at which an SLA will be broken if a problem persists.
"You can see voice services degrading and drill down to see where the problem resides," Vanderweel said.
Nimsoft champions an interface that is easy to use and lets IT managers quickly define and manage just about any metrics and thresholds in CallManager. The probe can deliver instant fault alerts via e-mail, pager or SMS.
While CallManager is designed to administer phones, including configuring and monitoring them, it does not monitor the network, Vanderweel said.
"Monitoring the phones certainly wont expose performance issues," he said. "The Call Manager is single-purpose, single-function."
RigNet, a company that provides communication services to offshore and land-based oil rigs from centers in Houston, Singapore, Norway and via a network of partners, has been using Nimsoft products for four years and recently tested Nimbus.
The flexibility provided in Nimsoft technology has allowed the company to monitor its many diverse systems from a central spot, said Morten Hagland Hansen at RigNet.
Additionally, the distributed nature of the Nimsoft technology helps RigNet maintain a reliable telephone system that is resistant to natural disasters such as hurricanes, he said.
"Because we have different network systems that were using, were trying to take all alarms back to one monitoring system," he said.
The additional monitoring capabilities provided by Nimbus will offer further flexibility, he said.
"It will give us more inside detail on how many calls and whats happening," he said. "If suddenly all the calls are dropping, we can see that."