Analytics & Automation

Monitor all aspects of your network with advanced analytics and machine learning intelligence.

 

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Why should I be looking for Analytics and Automation?

An IT professional's time is very valuable, and businesses need to get the most out of your expertise, so by utilizing analytics tools and implementing the correct automated activities, you can be assured your environment is operating and performing optimally. User friendly dashboards mean you are only alerted to exceptions, eliminate false-positives and when combined with Advanced AI it means that faults can be resolved far more quickly and efficiently reducing the burden on your IT teams.
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Common IT issues that analytics and automation helps to solve:

Slow / clunky applications
Analytics can provide you with the insight required to better understand bottlenecks and areas to optimise.
My workforce are now work from anywhere post Covid-19
Analytics can help show new usage patterns from your user base and enable you to review dynamically how your infrastructure is being used.
I'm always having to react to issues
While network analytics doesn’t make IT planning easy, it will allow you to be ahead of the curve and know rapidly where you can focus resources to improve your user experience.
Better Business Continuity
Having a dashboard that flags up issues early, as well as automation will ensure various activities happen if you remember them or not. Thus protecting your network from critical failures.
Poor IT productivity
Having a better grasp of your network through analytics and setting up necessary automations and alerting will allow easier task prioritisation.
Sweating your network assets
Upgrading networks is a costly and time consuming exercise; using analytics proactively helps extend the life of your network.

What are Analytics?

Analytics can be as simple as gathering the throughput of devices through to understanding the user experience when using applications on the network. Advanced Telemetry can gather operational intelligence via sensors placed on the network, reporting back to cloud-based tools that provide an intelligent, real-time view of your environment. When combined with machine learning a baseline can be created of the environment with exceptions easily identified when performance degrades, vastly improving the user experience and allowing IT to operate ahead of the curve. Ideally an analytics tool will allow you to forecast with greater clarity then ever what elements of the infrastructure and especially network need retuning and ultimately upgrading, when and by what degree of added capacity.

What tools can Hardware offer?


Automation

Automation can mean different things to different people; at Hardware, we have helped customers use low level of automation technology to improve scripting and quite basic levels of infrastructure support through to quite advanced AI supported automation solutions. These can be used to monitor and propose network and broader infrastructure configuration changes, allowing limited and expensive IT resources to review and approve changes rather than do this considerable and time consuming work from scratch themselves.

Many of our vendors supply tools that enable you to run against existing system that produce a report that you can to bring us, and we will analyse the results. We can then make recommendations about what the best route forward might be for you. Here are some we like and know well:

"Cloud Managed Networks" - Cloud service that enables simpler operations, streamlined troubleshooting and better visibility into end user experiences, shorter time to repair all connected devices. Whether this be WiFi, switches, IoT endpoints, wired and wireless devices.

The introduction of 'zero touch provisioning' with easy onboarding of devices into cloud portals has revolutionised the way that networks are implemented. Configuring standard device templates in advance of deployment and devices that 'call home' when activated dramatically speeds up implementation and reduces risk.

Dashboards that show a holistic view of the environment that can be used to drill-down to gain device status and operational information reduce the burden on stretched IT teams. When combined with AI driven intelligence and machine learning, fault resolution times are dramatically reduced contributing to a far greater user experience.

Cisco Meraki Cloud

Cisco Meraki

The Meraki platform enables you to manage a wide portfolio of products that cover wireless, security, SD-WAN, switching and CCTV from a single easy to use environment. With the Meraki platform you can easily configure devices in advance of deployment increasing agility and allowing you to respond quickly to ever changing requirements.

The Meraki platform allows you to fully manage an environment once devices have been deployed with advanced analytics and automation built in. Identify usage patterns throughout the environment, spot anomalies and make changes in real-time to ensure that the environment is operating efficiently.

Cisco Meraki
Juniper MIST

Juniper MIST

Juniper MIST AI and Automation solution puts you in control of your environment and covers wireless, SD-WAN and switching environments. From a central cloud portal, you can view the network as a whole and utilising advanced AI and machine learning helps resolve issues often before users report them. Easy onboarding of devices using QR Codes and Zero Touch Provisioning are standard throughout the Juniper range and simplify and speed up deployment.

The Marvis Virtual Assistant uses AI to gain an understanding of the environment and to spot issues and highlight them via the MIST portal. A key feature of Marvis is the conversational 'Natural Language' interface where you can ask questions about the health of the network and receive an intelligent response. Marvis is always learning, and you benefit from experience gained from other users on a global scale.

Juniper MIST
Juniper Apstra

Juniper Apstra

A move towards IP fabric-based networks within the datacentre and campus environments using EVPN/VxLAN has provided flexibility, scalability, and multi-tenant capabilities, that has been missing from traditional network designs. However, with this flexibility comes complexity as the design of IP Fabric networks can be far more time consuming and difficult when compared to traditional designs.

Apstra, from Juniper alleviates the complexity of designing, deploying, and managing an IP fabric environment as it allows you to create an environment virtually and then download it onto the physical hardware. Apstra allows you to abstract resources such as IP addresses, Connectivity and ASN's and allow them to be automatically allocated by the platform. Once the fabric has been deployed, Apstra manages the environment highlighting issues as they occur.

Juniper Apstra

On-Premise Analytics

As an alternative to cloud-based Analytics and Automation platforms, on-premises solutions provide similar functionality but with the intelligence being provided from a local source. A good example of this type of solution we know and recommend is Cisco Digital Network Architect (DNA). This interfaces with Cisco routers and switches to automate provisioning and provide full-scale analytics.

Cisco DNA

Cisco DNA (Digital Network Architect)

Cisco DNA utilises DNA Centre to manage the WAN, Campus and Branch networks from a single on-premises portal. You can view real-time statistics, create policies, automate tasks and secure the environment easily and quickly.

Cisco DNA

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