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Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager

Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 FAQ

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Q.   What is Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0?
A.    Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager (CM) provides a powerful web-based user experience for managing and quickly troubleshooting end-to-end video collaboration over a borderless network [1]. Troubleshooting, managing, and helping to ensure video quality in point-to-point and multipoint video sessions can be challenging. Collaboration Manager takes the guesswork out of video collaboration management by providing service and network operators with a real-time unified view of all Cisco TelePresence ® sessions in progress and immediate visibility into each session’s associated media paths, quickly isolating the source of problems. When Medianet-capable devices are deployed in the network, Collaboration Manager provides even deeper network path visibility, down to the granularity of video flow statistics.
Collaboration Manager helps to ensure a superior end-user experience by:

   Supporting timely end-to-end visibility and isolation of video-related issues for sessions, endpoints, and the network

   Reducing time to troubleshoot and recover from service-affecting problems

   Providing detailed analysis of the media path with critical fault and performance statistics that support quick isolation of network devices causing service degradation

   Efficiently validating large-scale deployments through comprehensive inventory, health, and status of Cisco TelePresence endpoints as well as service and network infrastructure devices

   Delivering reports that allow operators to track usage and problem history

Q.   What is Cisco Prime?
A.    Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager is a product within the Cisco Prime network management portfolio. The Cisco Prime portfolio of enterprise and service provider management offerings supports integrated lifecycle management of Cisco architectures and technologies based on a service-centric framework. Built on an intuitive workflow-oriented user experience, Cisco Prime products help increase IT productivity and reduce operations costs through innovative management solutions for the network services, infrastructure, and endpoints.
Q.   What are the key features and benefits of Collaboration Manager 1.0?
A.    Collaboration Manager provides the features and benefits listed in Table 1.

Table 1.       Collaboration Manager Features, Functions, and Benefits

Feature

Function

Benefit

Video Collaboration Summary Dashboard

  Dynamic dashboard provides current status of sessions, endpoint inventory, and service infrastructure device health and status
  Substantially decreases time and effort required to obtain a complete overview of any problems affecting sessions in progress, endpoints, and service infrastructure devices

Session monitoring

  Visualizes the topology and status of all sessions - in progress, recently completed, and scheduled
  Provides critical fault and performance metrics for Cisco TelePresence sessions (scheduled, ad hoc, and static) and endpoints
  Significantly reduces operational costs of session monitoring and troubleshooting
  Easily pinpoints very important sessions and sessions with the most critical issues
  Rapidly determines whether the issues are in endpoints or in the network

Endpoint and network diagnostics

  Media path visualization produces unique end-to-end views, including details of endpoint, infrastructure, and network nodes, and highlights where impairments may exist
  Acquire even deeper network path visibility, down to the granularity of video flow statistics, wherever Medianet-capable devices are deployed in the network
  Simplifies troubleshooting, reducing time to identify root causes affecting video quality of experience
  Reduces mean time to repair video-related issues

Endpoint Dashboard

  Track alarms, health statistics and scheduling status of Cisco TelePresence endpoints, whether the endpoints are currently in a session or not
  Reduces time needed to assess which endpoints have the most critical problems to address
  Endpoint scheduling status helps service operators prioritize issues to resolve before they affect upcoming sessions

Inventory

  Discover and inventory all deployed Cisco TelePresence endpoints, as well as pertinent service and network infrastructure devices
  Identify software versions and status of all devices
  Reduces operations team resources needed to verify software upgrades quickly and accurately
  Provides immediate manageability and comprehensive inventory details for large-scale video collaboration deployments

Reporting

  Produce reports on endpoint and network diagnostics during troubleshooting
  Export detailed endpoint utilization as well as problem history data through comma-separated value (CSV) files for creating customized reports
  Helps to analyze detailed data and corresponding trends to prevent future disruptions
  Enables improved planning for deploying new endpoints based on detailed assessment of endpoint usage history
Q.   What differentiates Collaboration Manager 1.0 from other video service management products on the market?
A.    Other products offer only basic traffic monitoring and management at the packet or protocol level, which is of limited use in video service management. No other product on the market offers the breadth and depth of service-level visibility available with Collaboration Manager 1.0. Only Collaboration Manager offers:

   End-to-end real-time visibility of all video collaboration sessions in progress. Visibility of service topology of recent past sessions, as well as future scheduled sessions

   Rapid isolation of critical fault and performance issues for endpoints and media path throughout the network

   Full view of inventory details for Cisco TelePresence endpoints, service infrastructure, and network infrastructure devices

Support for Cisco TelePresence Endpoints

Q.   Which Cisco TelePresence endpoints does Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 support?
A.    Collaboration Manager 1.0 will support the following Cisco TelePresence endpoints: CTS 500 series, CTS 1000, CTS 1100, CTS 1300 Series, CTS 3000 Series, CTS 3200 Series running software version 1.6.4 or later.
Q.   What additional Cisco TelePresence endpoints will Collaboration Manager support in the near future?
A.    A Collaboration Manager upgrade, available in late Summer 2011, is planned to additionally support T Series, C series and EX series endpoints.
Q.   Does Collaboration Manager require any agents to be installed on Cisco TelePresence endpoints?
A.    No, Collaboration Manager does not require any additional agent software on monitored service infrastructure devices (including Cisco TelePresence endpoints, CTS Manager, Cisco TelePresence Multipoint Switches, and Cisco Unified Communications Manager), network infrastructure devices (routers and switches), or the operator workstation. It uses standard interfaces to receive events and statistics and will periodically poll the devices for status information.

Support for CTS Manager

Q.   Does Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 work with CTS Manager?
A.    Yes, Collaboration Manager works with CTS Manager to discover Cisco TelePresence scheduled session information. Collaboration Manager also polls CTS Manager periodically to assess the status of CTS Manager CPU and memory levels, as well as essential services running on the device, and displays these statistics in dashboard views. The polling intervals for CTS Manager can be configured through Collaboration Manager administration features. Collaboration Manager will support CTS Manager running software version 1.6.4 or later.
Q.   What are the differences between the capabilities of Collaboration Manager and CTS Manager?
A.    CTS Manager allows end users to schedule both point-to-point and multipoint Cisco TelePresence sessions from Microsoft Outlook or Lotus Notes. It also collects and provides status information about Cisco TelePresence endpoints. Collaboration Manager provides end-to-end monitoring and troubleshooting of Cisco TelePresence sessions and endpoints, as well as visibility into the network infrastructure devices transporting the video for Cisco TelePresence sessions. Collaboration Manager utilizes the scheduling information from CTS Manager to deliver visualized session topologies for the operator. CTS Manager and Collaboration Manager are fully complementary systems that work together.
Q.   What capabilities does Collaboration Manager have when working with CTS Manager?
A.    Through working with CTS Manager, Collaboration Manager is able to discover Cisco TelePresence endpoints known to CTS Manager and streamline the process of adding them to the Collaboration Manager inventory database. Additionally, Collaboration Manager periodically imports from CTS Manager the most current list of scheduled Cisco TelePresence sessions so that Collaboration Manager can provide real-time visualization of these sessions as well as monitor and display any alarms associated with the sessions. Collaboration Manager can also monitor CPU/memory utilization and key services running on CTS Manager, as well as its Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) and database connectivity status.

Support for Cisco TelePresence Management Suite

Q.   Does Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 work with the Cisco TelePresence Management Suite?
A.    A Collaboration Manager upgrade, available in late Summer 2011, will include support for the Cisco TelePresence Management Suite. This next release of Collaboration Manager will deliver even broader coverage of Cisco TelePresence endpoint and service infrastructure devices.

Support for Cisco TelePresence Multipoint Switches

Q.   Does Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 work with the Cisco TelePresence Multipoint Switch?
A.    Yes, Collaboration Manager works with Cisco TelePresence Multipoint Switch devices to discover Cisco TelePresence multipoint session information. Collaboration Manager also polls any discovered Cisco TelePresence Multipoint Switch devices periodically to assess the status of their CPU and memory levels, as well as essential services running on the devices, and displays these statistics in dashboard views. The polling intervals for Cisco TelePresence Multipoint Switch devices can be configured through Collaboration Manager administration features. Collaboration Manager will support Cisco TelePresence Multipoint Switch devices running software version 1.6.3 or later.

Support for Cisco Unified Communications Manager

Q.   Does Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 work with Cisco Unified Communications Manager?
A.    Yes, Collaboration Manager works with Cisco Unified Communications Manager to obtain information about endpoints initiating and terminating participation in TelePresence sessions. Collaboration Manager also polls Communications Manager periodically to assess the status of the Communications Manager CPU and memory levels, as well as essential services running on the device, and displays these statistics in dashboard views. The polling intervals for Cisco Unified Communications Manager can be configured through Collaboration Manager administration features. Collaboration Manager will support Communications Manager devices running system version 7.1.3.11001-7 or later.

Support for Network Infrastructure Devices

Q.   Can Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 work with a non-Cisco based network?
A.    Yes, Collaboration Manager will still have full capabilities for session and endpoint monitoring. However, Collaboration Manager will not be able to provide health statistics (CPU, memory levels) and ingress/egress interface statistics for non-Cisco routers and switches.
Q.   What extra capability does Collaboration Manager deliver for a Cisco-based network versus a non-Cisco-based network?
A.    For Cisco-based network routers and switches, Collaboration Manager is able to identify Cisco device types in a media path visualization diagram and provide health statistics (CPU, memory levels) and ingress/egress interface statistics for these devices so that service operators can identify issues affecting video collaboration service quality.

Additional Capabilities Provided Through Medianet

Q.   How does Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 allow customers to benefit from Medianet?
A.    In a network where Cisco’s new Medianet capabilities are deployed, Collaboration Manager can use video performance monitoring and flow-based measurements. It helps enable service and network operators to use Cisco’s unique and powerful Medianet capabilities such as Mediatrace and IP service-level agreement (IP SLA) video operations to provide enhanced path computation, statistics collection, and synthetic traffic generation for Medianet-capable network devices. This allows for a richer set of end-to-end information available to service operators as they identify and isolate video collaboration service-related issues.
Q.   What extra capability does Collaboration Manager deliver for Medianet Cisco network elements?
A.    For Cisco Medianet-capable network routers and switches, Collaboration Manager is able to provide network flow information in a media path visualization diagram so that service operators can more easily pinpoint where network traffic issues (including latency, jitter, packet loss) are affecting video collaboration service quality. Medianet-capable network routers and switches can also act as initiators and responders for IP SLA video operations, enabling proactive diagnostics associated with video.
For more information about general Medianet features, visit the Cisco Enterprise Medianet Homepage. For more information about specific Medianet features utilized by Collaboration Manager, visit the Mediatrace and IP SLA Video Operations feature pages.

Licensing and Ordering

Q.   When will Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0 be available for purchase?
A.    Collaboration Manager 1.0 will be available in April 2011.
Q.   How is Collaboration Manager packaged?
A.    Collaboration Manager 1.0 is deployed as a virtual appliance. A single downloadable open virtual appliance (OVA) image, which contains the Collaboration Manager virtual machine (VM), will be provided for installation onto a VMware server. For further details, see the “System Requirements” section below.
Q.   How is Collaboration Manager sold and licensed?
A.    Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager licensing is based on the scale of Cisco TelePresence deployment and allows customers to add incremental codec [2] licenses as they grow their video deployment. For specific details, contact your local Cisco account representative.

Table 2 presents the specifications for each license type based on the variables described below.

Table 2.       Licensing

License Type

Network Devices Supported

Codecs Supported

Base License

Up to 10,000

10

Incremental Codec License Pack

N/A

25 per pack

Q.   How do I order Collaboration Manager 1.0?
A.    Collaboration Manager 1.0 is available for purchase through regular Cisco sales and distribution channels worldwide. To download software, visit the Cisco Software Center. To order the software license, visit the Cisco Ordering Homepage. The license will be available by eDelivery only.
To purchase physical media of the software, an evaluation copy is available at Cisco Marketplace. Note: Installing a downloaded base license file on an evaluation system will overwrite the evaluation status and enable the full feature set of Collaboration Manager 1.0.

Table 3.       Ordering Information

Product Name

Part Number (SKU)

Cisco Prime CM Base License, includes 10 codecs

L-PCM-1.0-LG-K9=

Cisco Prime CM Incremental Codec License, 25-codec pack

L-PCM-1.0-LIC-25=

System Requirements

Q.   What are the minimum hardware and software requirements for installing and running Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager 1.0?
A.    Collaboration Manager 1.0 is deployed as a virtual appliance. A single downloadable OVA image, which contains the Collaboration Manager virtual machine, will be provided for installation onto a VMware server with a virtual machine environment matching or exceeding the virtual machine template described below.
A virtual machine template defines the configuration of the virtual machine that includes CPU, memory, disk, and network resources. The configuration of a Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager virtual machine must match or exceed the supported virtual machine template defined in Table 4.

Table 4.       Virtual Machine Templates

VM Template

vCPU

Memory

vDisk

vNIC

Recommended

2

8 GB

90 GB

1 GB NIC

Table 5 lists the minimum requirements for the VMware server onto which the Collaboration Manager OVA image will be installed.

Table 5.       System Requirements: VMware Server

Description

Specifications

Hardware

All the hardware components such as servers, CPU, storage, and Storage Area Network (SAN) models should be compatible with the VMware comprehensive compatibility guides posted at http://www.vmware.com.

Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) is recommended, but other servers can also be used.

Software

VMware ESXi 4.0 or later

Table 6 gives the minimum requirements for client systems.

Table 6.       System Requirements: Client

Description

Specifications

Browser

Mozilla Firefox 3.6.x

Flash Plug-in

Adobe Flash Player 10.0 or later

Resolution

1024 x 768 minimum

For More Information

For more information about the Cisco Prime Collaboration Manager, visit http://www.cisco.com/go/cpcm, contact your local account representative, or send an email to the product marketing group at ask-collaboration-manager@cisco.com.

 

 

 



[1] Phase 1 is to include support for Cisco TelePresence. Support for additional video collaboration endpoints will be added in subsequent releases.
[2] A codec is the "brain" of the CTS. The primary codec connects with the network and Cisco Unified Communications Manager to perform call management functions for the system. The secondary codec performs processing for the system elements that are attached to them. The optional presentation codec supports the document camera (if present), auxiliary displays, and works with an auxiliary control unit and audio extension unit for additional audio/video applications. The number and type of codecs your system uses depends on which CTS device you are using.
The above definition of a codec can be found in the Cisco TelePresence System User Guide: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/docs/telepresence/cts_admin/1_7/userguide/cts_ug_glos.html.
Note: For example, a CTS-3000 includes 4 codecs - left panel, center panel, right panel, presentation - while a CTS-500 includes only 1 codec.