Cisco Wide Area Application Services Monitoring Guide (Software Version 5.0.1)
Monitoring WAAS Using Cisco Network Analysis Module
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Monitoring WAAS Using Cisco Network Analysis Module

Table Of Contents

Monitoring WAAS Using Cisco Network Analysis Module

Information About NAM

Information About NAM Monitoring Functions

Configuring NAM Monitoring of WAAS Devices

Configuring Basic WAAS Setup

Configuring WAAS Monitored Servers

Configuring WAAS Data Sources in NAM

NAM Deployment Scenarios

Monitoring and Analyzing Traffic Using the NAM

NAM Metrics

Top Talkers Dashboards

Traffic Summary

Top Talkers Details

Throughput Dashboards

Network

Top Applications

Application

Performance Analysis Dashboards

Application

Conversation Multisegments


Monitoring WAAS Using Cisco Network Analysis Module


This chapter describes Cisco Network Analysis Module (NAM), which you can use to monitor your WAAS devices.

This chapter contains the following sections:

Information About NAM

Configuring NAM Monitoring of WAAS Devices

NAM Deployment Scenarios

Monitoring and Analyzing Traffic Using the NAM

Information About NAM

NAM monitors network and application response time (ART) by analyzing the exchanges of TCP packets between clients and application servers. The NAM Traffic Analyzer software enables network managers to understand, manage, and improve how applications and services are delivered to end users by combining flow-based and packet-based analysis into one solution.

The Cisco NAM includes an embedded, web-based Traffic Analyzer GUI that provides quick access to the configuration menus and presents easy-to-read performance monitoring and analysis on network traffic. A FlowAgent (FA) runs on WAAS devices to collect TCP packet data and send the flow data to NAM for analyzing and reporting. See Figure 5-1.

Figure 5-1 NAM Monitoring of WAAS Devices

For more information about NAM, see the following documentation URLs:

Complete NAM documentation set:

http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/sw/cscowork/ps5401/tsd_products_support_series_home.html

Cisco WAAS NAM Virtual Service Blade Installation and Configuration Guide:

http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/sw/cscowork/ps5401/prod_installation_guides_list.html

Information About NAM Monitoring Functions

NAM provides the following monitoring functions:

Monitoring Client-Edge Connections—By monitoring the TCP connections between the clients and the WAAS edge device (connection TCP-1 in Figure 5-1), the following ART metrics can be measured:

Total Delay (TD) as experienced by the client

Total Transaction Time as experienced by the client

Bandwidth usage (bytes/packets) before compression

Number of transactions and connections

Network round-trip time (RTT) broken down into two segment: client-edge and edge-server

Monitoring Edge-Core Optimized Connections—By monitoring the spoofed TCP connections between the edge and core WAAS devices (connection TCP-2 in Figure 5-1), the following additional ART metric can be measured: Bandwidth usage (bytes/packets) after compression.

Monitoring Edge-Core Connections—By monitoring the TCP connections between the core WAAS devices and the servers (connection TCP-3 in Figure 5-1), additional ART metrics can be measured:

Application (Server) Delay (without the proxy acceleration/caching server)

Network RTT between the core WAAS device and the servers

The sections that follow show how to configure WAAS to enable monitoring by NAM and how to configure NAM to monitor specific WAAS functions.

Configuring NAM Monitoring of WAAS Devices

This section contains the following topics:

Configuring Basic WAAS Setup

Configuring WAAS Monitored Servers

Configuring WAAS Data Sources in NAM

Configuring Basic WAAS Setup

Before you can monitor WAAS traffic, you must first set up basic NAM configuration by completing the following tasks:

Connect to a NAM server by providing the server's IP address, protocol, and port.

Establish account credentials.

Associate a WAAS device group or WAAS Express device group with configured policies.

Enable Flow Agent.

Follow the steps below to complete basic NAM configuration. Only device group level policy configurations are applicable for NAM.


Step 1 From the WAAS Central Manager, choose Configure > Network Analysis Module > Basics > Setup. The Setup window appears. (See Figure 5-2).

Figure 5-2 NAM Setup Window

Step 2 Choose either HTTP or HTTPS, depending on which access was configured during NAM installation.

Step 3 Enter the hostname and IP address of the NAM server.

Step 4 Configure the credentials: use the preconfigured login credentials by selecting the Use Default Credentials option, or configure the credentials manually by filling in the fields with valid values.

Step 5 Configure the WAAS Integration Preferences to configure a WAAS device group to work with the NAM server as follows:

a. Choose the device group from which applications and classifier definitions are pushed to the NAM when performing a synchronization operation.

b. Choose the Enable Flow Agent option to data export.

c. Choose the Sync all classifiers/apps to NAM on submit to initiate synchronization with the NAM.

Step 6 Click Submit.


For additional information about configuring NAM, see the NAM chapter in the Cisco Wide Area Application Services Configuration Guide.

Configuring WAAS Monitored Servers

To monitor the response time for a server, you need to add the server IP address in the NAM configuration setup, as follows:


Step 1 From the WAAS Central Manager menu, choose Configure > Network Analysis Module > Basics > Monitored Servers. The NAM WAAS Servers Monitoring window appears. See Figure 5-3.

Figure 5-3 WAAS Servers Monitoring Window

Step 2 Choose the IP address of one or more servers to monitor.

Step 3 Click Add. The Add WAAS Servers(s) window appears.

Step 4 Click Submit to add the server IP address(es).


Configuring WAAS Data Sources in NAM

You usually don't need to add WAAS devices because export-enabled WAAS devices are detected and added automatically.

To manually add a WAAS device to the list of devices monitored by NAM, follow these steps:


Step 1 From the WAAS Central Manager menu, choose Configure > Network Analysis Module > Basics > Monitored Servers. The NAM Data Source Configuration window appears. (See Figure 5-4).

Figure 5-4 NAM Data Sources

Step 2 From the list of Types, choose WAAS device.

Step 3 In the IP field, enter the device IP address.

Step 4 Check the check boxes for the data sources that you want to monitor. See Table 5-1 for more information.

Step 5 Click Submit to add the new data source.


Table 5-1 WAAS Data Sources 

WAAS Data Source
Description

Client

Export the original (LAN side) TCP flows originated from its clients to NAM for monitoring.

Client WAN

Export the optimized (WAN side) TCP flows originated from its clients to NAM for monitoring.

Server WAN

Export the optimized (WAN side) TCP flows from its servers to NAM for monitoring.

Server

Export the original (LAN side) TCP flows from its servers to NAM for monitoring.

Pass-Through

Export the flows that traverses WAAS without being optimized.


For additional information about configuring and using NAM, see the User Guide for Cisco Network Analysis Module Traffic Analyzer.

NAM Deployment Scenarios

The NAM uses WAAS data sources to monitor traffic collected from different WAAS segments: Client, Client WAN, Server WAN, and Server. Each WAAS segment is represented by a data source. You can set up the NAM to monitor and report other traffic statistics of the WAAS data sources (such as application, host, and conversation information) in addition to the monitored ART metrics.

The use of the data source depends upon on the WAAS deployment scenario. Table 5-2 describes several common WAAS deployment scenarios and their applicable data sources.

Table 5-2 WAAS Deployment Scenarios 

Deployment Scenario
Edge WAE Data Source
Core WAE Data Source

Clients in the branch

Servers in the core (data center)

NAM in the core

Client

Server

Server WAN

Clients in the branch

Servers in the core (data center)

NAM in the core

Client

Client WAN

Server

Servers in the branch

Clients in the core (data center)

NAM in the core

Server

Client

Client WAN

Servers in the branch

Clients in the core (data center)

NAM in the branch

Server

Server WAN

Client

Servers and clients in the branch and the core (data center)

NAM in the core

Client

Server

Client

Server

Client WAN

Server WAN

Servers and clients in the branch and the core (data center)

NAM in the branch

Client

Server

Client WAN

Server WAN

Client

Server


Monitoring and Analyzing Traffic Using the NAM

The monitoring and analyzing traffic using the NAM feature provides intuitive workflows and interactive reporting capabilities.

The monitoring and analyzing dashboards allow you to view network traffic, application performance, site performance, and alarms at a glance. From there, you can isolate one area, for example an application with response time issues, and then drill down to the dashboard for further investigation.

The section contains the following topics:

NAM Metrics

Top Talkers Dashboards

Throughput Dashboards

Performance Analysis Dashboards

NAM Metrics

You can use the NAM to report a variety of metrics, depending on which data sources you are monitoring, as shown in Table 5-3.

Table 5-3 NAM Data Source Monitoring 

Monitored WAAS Data Sources
Metrics Available

Monitoring Client Data Sources:
monitor TCP connections between the client and the WAE device

Total response time as experienced by the client

Total transaction time as experience by the client

Bandwidth usage (bytes/packets) before optimization

Number of transactions and connections

Network time separated into client-edge and edge-server times

Monitoring WAN Data Sources:
Monitor the TCP connections between edge and core WAE devices

Bandwidth usage (bytes/packets) after optimization

Network time of the WAN segment

Monitoring Server Data Sources:
Monitor TCP connections between core WAE devices and the servers

Server response time (without proxy acceleration or caching server)

Network time between the core WAE device and the servers


You can also configure data sources from the core WAE. You can add the Server, Server-WAN, and Passthrough data sources to monitor application performance analytics as observed from the server LAN, WAN, and the client LAN.

Top Talkers Dashboards

This section includes the following topics:

Traffic Summary

Top Talkers Details

Traffic Summary

The Top Talkers Summary dashboard allows you to view the Top N Applications, Top N Application Groups, Top N Hosts (In and Out), IP Distribution by Bytes, Top N DSCP, and Top N VLAN that is being monitored on your network. It provides auto-monitoring of traffic from all WAAS devices. You can view the Traffic Summary Dashboard by going to Monitor > Network Analysis Module > Overview. (See Figure 5-5).

Figure 5-5 NAM Monitoring Overview

The charts shown on this dashboard are as follows:

Top N Applications

The Top N Applications Chart enables you to view the traffic rate (bytes per second or bits per second) or traffic volume (bytes or bits), depending on the Interactive Report filter selection (data rate or cumulative, respectively).

Top N Application Groups

This chart shows a detailed analysis of the Top N application groups and the traffic rate or volume for this interval.

Top N Hosts (In and Out)

This chart displays the traffic rate (bytes per second or bits per second) or traffic volume (bytes or bits).

IP Distribution by Bytes

This chart shows the percentages of bytes that are distributed to IP protocols (for example, IPv4 TCP).

Top N DSCP

This chart shows statistics for the top DSCP aggregation groups.

Top N VLAN

This chart shows the Top N VLAN statistics. In this chart, you might see VLAN 0, which is for traffic that does not have any VLAN tags.

Top Talkers Details

While you are in the process of deploying WAAS devices, you can get data to assist in the WAAS planning and configuration.

When you go to Monitor > Network Analysis Module > Top Talkers Details, you will see the window that assists you in the predeployment process. Use the Interactive Report window to select the traffic you want to analyze for optimization. The window displays the Top Applications, Top Network Links, Top Clients, and Top Servers.

Based on the results, you can then configure the WAAS products to optimize your network.

Throughput Dashboards

This section includes the following topics:

Network

Top Applications

Application

Network

The Network dashboard enables you to view LAN versus WAN throughput for WAAS users both in the incoming and outgoing directions. To view these reports, configure interface groups that comprise WAN and LAN interfaces. The displayed information represents the total data collected since the collection was created or since the NAM was restarted. To view the Network dashboard, go to Monitor > Network Analysis Module > Throughput > Network.

Choose an interface group view from the Interface Selector on the left side of the window to see traffic in the charts. Click the arrow icon to the left of the NDE data source name to display all interfaces groups, and then select an interface group view. If the charts show no data, and you see the message "Interface needs to be selected," you have not yet chosen an interface group view.

After you choose the interface group view, you see the following charts populated:

Interface Traffic (Ingress % Utilization and Egress % Utilization)

Top N Applications—Ingress

Top N Applications—Egress

Top N Hosts—Ingress

Top N Hosts—Egress

Top N DSCP Aggr—Ingress

Top N DSCP Aggr—Egress

You can enter the interface speed manually through the Interface capacity table, or the speed can be automatically configured if the SNMP settings for the NDE device are entered in the data source table.

Top Applications

In the Top Applications dashboard, you can view the top applications by the traffic rate over a selected time and for the specified site and/or data source.

Applications Over Time shows you all of the applications that have been running for the time period interval. The color-coded legend shows you what the applications are running.

Application

In the Application Analysis window, you can see the traffic level for a given application over a selected period of time. It is available under the Monitor > Network Analysis Module > Throughput > Application. This window shows you the following:

A graph of application traffic over time.

Top hosts that transmit and receive traffc on that application for the selected time period.

Application Configuration that shows the criteria by which the NAM classifies packets as that application. This criteria is typically a list of TCP and/or UDP ports that identify the application. Some applications are identified by heuristic or other state-based algorithms.

Hosts Detail

On the "Top N Hosts - Traffic In" or "Top N Hosts - Traffic Out" chart, you can choose Hosts Detail to see the All Hosts window and the detailed information about all hosts. The All Hosts window displays the following information:

Hos—Host address

Application—Application type

In Bytes/sec—Number of bytes per second incoming

In Packets/sec—Number of packets per second incoming

Out Bytes/sec—Number of bytes per second outgoing

Out Packets/sec—Number of packets per second outgoing

Performance Analysis Dashboards

This section includes the following topics:

Application

Conversation Multisegments

Application

The Application dashboard provides the transaction time performance for an application as well as the original and optimized traffic volume reported by the flow agent. Information about how the transaction time is broken up across client, WAN, and server segments is also provided. For example, if the transaction time is dominated by the server segment time (due to a slow server), WAAS may not be able to improve the performance as much as when it is dominated by the WAN network time. To view the Application performance analysis dashboard, go to Monitor > Network Analysis Module > Performance Analysis > Application.

The charts available on this dashboard are as follows:

Transaction Time (Client Experience)

Traffic Volume and Compression Ratio

Average Concurrent Connections (Optimized vs. Passthru)

Multi-Segment Network Time (Client LAN - WAN - Server LAN)

Conversation Multisegments

The Conversation Multiple Segments dashboard correlates data from different data sources and allows you to view and compare response time metrics from multiple WAAS segments (data sources). To view the Conversation Multiple Segments dashboard, go to Monitor > Network Analysis Module > Performance Analysis > Conversation Multisegments.

The Response Time Across Multiple Segments window shows the response time metrics of the selected server or client-server pair from applicable data sources.