First Multiport Gigabit Ethernet Probe Debuts

NetScout claims its nGenius eight-port probe can save thousands on Gigabit Ethernet network monitoring.

NetScout Systems Inc. Thursday made the case for lower total cost of ownership for Gigabit Ethernet network monitoring with a new eight-port probe.

The new nGenius Eight Port Gigabit Ethernet Probe—the first multiport Gigabit Ethernet probe—can save customers between $25,000 to $35,000 over other offerings that require multiple probes or multiple management tools to monitor the same number of Gigabit Ethernet switches, according Eileen Haggerty, senior product marketing manager at the Westford, Mass., company.

Competitors such as Network Associates Inc. offer probes that only support a single Gigabit Ethernet switch. Other alternatives, such as using a LANhopper matrix switch, provide connectivity to multiple Gigabit Ethernet segments to monitor the switches connected to it, but require additional monitoring tools.

The tool also speeds troubleshooting, thanks to its support for multiple connections. "By only looking at one or two switches at a time, it takes longer to troubleshoot," Haggerty. "This lets you get to the problem faster and diagnose the problem faster."

The nGenius probe can also monitor high-speed full-duplex interswitch links between a pair of Gigabit Ethernet switches.

Gigabit Ethernet has seen significant growth over the past year, with International Data Corp. pegging its growth at 65 percent to reach $4.6 billion in revenues last year. As it becomes the core of enterprise networks, effectively monitoring the high-speed backbones becomes more imperative, NetScout officials said.

The nGenius probe, due early next month, is priced at $44,995.