Network Monitoring And Management

The Top 10 Network Monitoring And Management Software

Discover the 10 best network management software solutions. Explore features such as network mapping and visualization, automatic device discovery, and reporting and analytics.

The Top Network Management Software Include:
  • 1. Atera
  • 2. Auvik Network Manager
  • 3. Catchpoint Network Experience
  • 4. Datadog Network Monitoring
  • 5. LogicMonitor Envision
  • 6. ManageEngine OpManager
  • 7. Paessler PRTG Network Monitor
  • 8. Progress WhatsUp Gold
  • 9. SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor
  • 10. Zabbix

One of the biggest challenges for IT teams isn’t just keeping the network running, it’s keeping it running effectively. In the face of cyber adversaries attempting to breach the network to steal or corrupt data, and accidental damage caused by misconfigurations, it can be very difficult to manage a network manually. That’s where network monitoring and management software comes in. 

Network monitoring is the process of monitoring the network for slow, failing, or damaged assets. These solutions make sure an admin is aware of each issue and has the capacity to remediate it. This may seem like a simple task, but it can quickly become overwhelming as a network grows – the more devices, applications, and services on a network, the more complex it is to monitor and manage. Network monitoring and management tools take care of this for you by automating some of the more time-consuming processes involved in network monitoring, such as device discovery and asset mapping. This leaves your IT team with more time to spend on responding to alerts and ensuring that the network is running as efficiently and securely as possible. 

There are two main ways in which network monitoring tools can work: they’re either agent-based, or agentless. Agent-based tools usually deliver most of the software (i.e., the management features) as-a-Service, which can be accessed via a web-based interface. You then just need to install the monitoring agent on each device on your network, and the software will report back telemetry from that device to your web-based interface. Agentless tools are often installed on-premises. They don’t require you to install an agent on each device in order to monitor them; they just need the access credentials for those devices. While this saves time on implementation, it also generally requires more resource to run than an agent-based system. 

In this article, we’ll explore the top network monitoring and management software. We’ll look at features such as network mapping and visualization, automatic device discovery, and reporting and analytics. We’ll give you some background information on the provider and the key features of each solution, as well as the type of customer that they are most suitable for.

Atera logo

Atera is an IT monitoring and management provider headquartered in Tel Aviv, Israel. Their lightweight, cloud-based platform combines remote network discovery, remote management, professional services automation (PSA), remote access, patch management, and help desk services. These tools enable IT teams to streamline their network management processes and reduce strain on resources, while proactively remediating issues.

Atera Features:

  • Compatible with Windows, MacOS, Linux, and SNMP devices
  • Continuous network scanning maps all assets (including ports) across Workgroup and Domain controller networks, highlighting the presence of any unauthorized devices and making it easier to identify vulnerabilities, e.g., missing patches or security software
  • Automatic notifications alert IT teams to changes across the network for faster investigation
  • Active Directory integration enables IT teams to monitor device and user information across specific domains or subdomains
  • Workgroup scanning provides data on all assets across a LAN
  • Automation of IT maintenance and administrative tasks such as system scans, reboots, update checks, and patching, free up IT resource to focus on more complex issues
  • Dynamic reporting and activity logging provide a real-time picture of the entire network for security and auditing

Pricing And Plans: Atera for IT teams is available via four packages. Professional ($149/month/technician) is suitable for individuals that need to manage a small network. This package doesn’t include automatic network discovery. Expert ($169) is suitable for small teams managing a network with multiple device types. Master ($199) is suitable for large teams looking for automatic troubleshooting and remediation. Enterprise pricing is available from Atera on request. These prices reflect an annual subscription – monthly subscriptions are more expensive.

Expert Insights’ Comments: Atera is designed to be a “one stop shop” for IT teams and MSPs. It offers lots of functionality besides the network monitoring features listed above, such as multi-tenancy, an in-built helpdesk system, and PSA tools. This makes it a strong solution for an IT team looking to unify their network and asset management processes. However, because network discovery isn’t available in the Professional package, we recommend Atera as a strong network monitoring tool for IT teams managing mid-size to larger networks.

Auvik Logo

Headquartered in Ontario, Canada, Auvik is a provider of cloud-based network and application management software. Auvik’s Network Manager solution provides many of out-of-the-box features designed to help IT teams identify issues across their network before they develop into more complex security or performance problems. Auvik is available for IT teams and MSPs alike and is trusted on over 70,000 networks globally.

Auvik Features:

  • Automatic network scanning creates a continuous, real-time inventory of all IT assets, including make, model, serial number, IP address, and physical switchport details
  • Intelligent search and filtering enable IT teams to locate data on a specific VLAN or device for faster investigation
  • Comes with 50 pre-configured alerts, which admins can adjust and choose how often they want to be notified for them; admins can also create custom alerts
  • Centralized syslog for faster troubleshooting
  • Automatic backups of network device configurations ensure configurations can be restored quickly or exported to a new device in the event a device stops working
  • Network traffic analysis offers insights into which users are accessing the network and where their traffic is flowing to help identify malicious behavior and which devices and apps are using the most bandwidth

Pricing And Plans: Auvik is available via two packages: Essentials and Performance. Both packages offer network discovery, mapping and monitoring, remote management, global dashboards, and API integrations for an unlimited number of users, network sites, and endpoints. Performance also offers network flow monitoring, ML-powered application visibility, IP tracking, syslog collection and search, and troubleshooting dashboards. Pricing is available upon request from Auvik.

Expert Insights’ Comments: Auvik’s strong automation capabilities and out-of-the-box alerts make it a great network management tool for small- to mid-size organizations looking for a reliable, yet easy to manage solution.

Catchpoint Systems is a digital observability provider headquartered in New York, US, which focuses on network performance monitoring and optimization. Their Network Experience monitoring solution enables IT teams to obtain complete visibility over the third-party services they rely on for their business to operate. The solution helps IT teams identify and remediate issues along their service delivery chain, so they can improve user experience for both employees and customers.

Catchpoint Network Experience Features:

  • Real-time network diagnostics help IT teams to quickly identify and troubleshoot the root cause of any issues
  • Centralized dashboard provides visual insights into the performance of third-party services, including CDN setups, DNS, BGP issues, and Wi-Fi networks
  • Data visualization through charts and graphs make it easier to monitor live and historical network performance and identify current issues or long-term trends
  • Traffic shaping and analysis of users’ network paths helps prioritize incident response so that users are impacted as little as possible
  • Vendor management tools track ISP, ingress, and egress performance to help identify and continuously verify the top-performing vendors for each party of the service delivery chain

Pricing And Plans: Pricing for Catchpoint’s Network Experience solution is available from Catchpoint upon request.

Expert Insights’ Comments: Catchpoint enables businesses to proactively identify and remediate issues in their digital service delivery chain before those issues can impact their users. The platform is available globally, and its visual dashboards enable IT teams to quickly scan large amounts of data to identify issues or trends. Overall, we recommend Catchpoint Network Experience as a strong network monitoring tool for larger enterprises that rely on delivering SaaS apps and other third-party services to their users and need to ensure those services are delivered optimally.

DataDog Logo

Headquartered in New York, US, Datadog is an observability provider that gives organizations visibility into their cloud applications, servers, databases, and services. Datadog offers two network monitoring and management solutions: Network Performance Monitoring (NPM) provides insights into application, infrastructure, and DNS performance for more efficient troubleshooting; Network Device Monitoring (NDM) provides insights into the health and performance of bare-metal devices on the network, including firewalls, routers, and switches.

Datadog Network Monitoring Features:

  • Traffic analysis highlights where traffic is flowing across endpoints, on-premises servers, cloud apps, and containers to help identify communication issues and potential malicious behaviors, such as unusual spikes in traffic
  • DNS analysis gives admins visibility into server health, with reporting on request volume, response times, and error codes
  • Reporting on communication status between cloud resources, including metrics such as latency and TCP retransmits
  • Automatically discovers new devices on networks and subnetworks and monitors their health status
  • Granular reporting into device health via an intuitive, visual interface
  • ML-driven insights help forecast bandwidth usage so IT teams can mitigate potential issues before they happen

Pricing And Plans: Datadog NPM starts at $5/host/month when billed annually, or at $7.20 on demand. NDM starts at $7/device/month when billed annually, or at $10.20 on demand.

Expert Insights’ Comments: Datadog’s network monitoring solutions offer comprehensive visibility into the health and performance status of all network assets, and the traffic flows between those assets. NPM and NDM can be purchased as standalone solutions, together, or in combination with Datadog’s other infrastructure services for added security, auditing, and logging. The platform is easy to navigate and offers a clear, visual overview of the network. As such, we recommend Datadog as a strong network monitoring tool for both SMBs and larger enterprises.

LogicMonitor is a network monitoring and observability provider based in California, US. Their cloud-based platform enables MSPs and enterprises to obtain visibility into their network infrastructure and application stacks. LogicMonitor’s Envision network monitoring tool is available as part of the wider LogicMonitor platform. It supports network monitoring across on-premises, cloud environments, and data centers, so that businesses can improve their security and efficiency regardless of how their networks are built.

LogicMonitor Envision Features:

  • Agentless network monitoring via SNMP, jFlow, NetFlow, sFlow, WMI, NBAR2, and/or IPFIX, with support for SD-WAN and cloud-based networks
  • Monitoring for network devices, including firewalls, routers, switches, and wireless devices, helps reduce visibility gaps
  • Automatically detects new devices on the network with the help of 2,500+ pre-configured integrations
  • Network topography maps visualize the network, including traffic flows, enabling IT teams to contextualize alerts at a glance and easily identify root causes
  • Machine learning-driven forecasting indicates whether network assets are performing as expected, helping teams identify performance and security issues
  • OSI/IEC 27001 and SOC2 Type II certified
  • 24/7 support

Pricing And Plans: The LogicMonitor platform is available via two packages, Pro and Enterprise. Both plans include LogicMonitor’s network monitoring features, but Enterprise adds on application performance monitoring and configuration monitoring. Pricing for both plans is available from LogicMonitor on request.

Expert Insights’ Comments: While LogicMonitor’s ease of configuration and wide range of out-of-the-box integrations make it accessible to smaller businesses, they may not make use of all the features offered by the wider LogicMonitor platform. As such, we recommend LogicMonitor as a strong network monitoring and management tool for MSPs and larger enterprises looking for a way to detect issues across their networks (or clients’ networks), including their application stack.

ManageEngine logo

ManageEngine, a subsidiary of Zoho Corporation, is a leading IT management software provider headquartered in California, US. Trusted by 9 out of 10 of Fortune 100 companies, ManageEngine’s solution enables enterprises and MSPs to optimize and integrate their IT process so they’re easier to manage. OpManager is ManageEngine’s network monitoring software, which provides in-depth analysis of network and connected device performance.

ManageEngine OpManager Features:

  • In-depth, real-time health, availability, and performance reporting on all IP-based devices connected to the network, including storage devices, printers, servers, routers, switches, firewalls, and wireless LAN controllers
  • 24/7 monitoring for Hyper-V, VMWare, Citrix, Xen, and Nutanix HCI servers
  • Remote probes with probe-specific controls enable IT teams to monitor distributed networks across multiple locations, all via one console
  • Network visualization, including topography mapping, enables IT teams to easily identify issues for faster remediation
  • Fault management tools help deliver meaningful, prioritized alerts to IT admins, with raw event correlation and unwanted event filtering

Pricing And Plans: OpManager is available via three packages. Standard starts at $245 for 10 devices and offers network device monitoring, physical server monitoring, alerting, custom dashboards, and business views. Professional ($345 for 10 devices) adds on virtual server monitoring, hardware monitoring, workflow automation, and 3D rack views. Enterprise ($11,545 for 250 devices) adds on distributed network monitoring and high availability.

Expert Insights’ Comments: OpManager is a robust network monitoring and management tool that’s easy to manage via its highly intuitive, visual interface. We recommend OpManager for mid-size and large enterprises looking to monitor their network performance, troubleshoot issues and bottlenecks, and ensure the health of their network devices. For MSPs, ManageEngine also offers OpManagerMSP, which offers multi-tenant support, customer-based grouping, and customer dashboards.

Paessler Logo

Headquartered in Nuremberg, Germany, Paessler is an IT software provider that specializes in IT and IoT monitoring. PRTG is their IT infrastructure monitoring platform, which offers cloud-based monitoring for SMBs and on-prem monitoring for organizations of all sizes operating a Windows network.

Paessler PRTG Network Monitor Features:

  • Monitors the entire network—including systems, devices, traffic, and applications—using simple network management protocol, Windows Management Instrumentation, packet sniffing, and SSH, with support for Ping, SNMP, WMI, HTTP requests and flow protocols
  • Support for distributed networks, with the ability to monitor an unlimited number of remote locations
  • Automatically discovers all network devices and creates sensors for them
  • Real-time topography maps visualize the network and display live status information for network assets
  • Customizable report templates and dashboards ensure IT teams can access the information they need immediately
  • Alerting on network issues and anomalous metrics via email, push notification, and HTTP request, with the option to set custom thresholds for alerting
  • Web interface, desktop app, and mobile apps for iOS and Android

Pricing And Plan: Paessler PRTG is available via three versions. PRTG Network Monitor starts at €1,349/license and supports small- to mid-sized companies. PRTG Enterprise Monitor starts at €14,400/year and supports larger enterprises. PRTG Hosted Monitor starts at €1,299/year and offers hosted monitoring for SMBs. Paessler also offers a freeware version of PRTG that includes all features and up to 100 monitoring sensors (PRTG Network Monitoroffers up to 10,000 sensors).

Expert Insights’ Comments: Paessler PRTG is a highly flexible platform, with the ability to host on-prem or in the cloud and monitor a local network or a distributed network across multiple remote locations. Its flexible pricing plans and ease of management make this solution suitable for organizations of all sizes, and its range of management interfaces make PRTG accessible to both on-prem and remote IT teams.

Progress Logo

Based in Massachusetts, US, Progress Software is a technology provider that offers a broad range of data connectivity, infrastructure management, and digital experience software designed to help businesses build and maintain a secure, optimized infrastructure. WhatsUp Gold is their network monitoring and management software for on-prem and cloud environments, which enables IT teams to improve network performance and identify and remediate network issues before they reach the end user.

Progress WhatsUp Gold Features:

  • Network monitoring identifies all network devices, including servers, storage, cloud devices, virtual and wireless devices, and routers
  • Application monitoring and reporting offers insights into performance and response times, with analysis of bandwidth use to help highlight potential malicious connections
  • Interactive topology mapping visualizes the relationships and dependencies between network assets
  • Real-time alerts notify admins of any issues
  • Centralized reporting enables admins to easily access network monitoring reports at a device level
  • Automatic configuration backups ensure configurations can be restored quickly and easily in the event a device stops working
  • Integrated log management enables admins to filter, search, and alert on syslogs or Windows logs for all connected devices, and archive logs to any storage location for unlimited retention periods to comply with regulatory standards

Pricing And Plans: WhatsUp Gold is available via three packages. Free is available on a 12-month renewable or perpetual license, with point-based licensing. Premium is available either as an annual subscription or perpetual license, with device-based licensing. Total Plus is available on a perpetual license, with points-based licensing. Pricing for each package is available via Progress’ website on request.

Expert Insights’ Comments: One of WhatsUp Gold’s key strengths is the interactivity and graphical visualization offered by its reporting dashboards. The platform enables admins to identify network issues at a glance, and the drag-and-drop dashboard interface is easy to navigate. We recommend WhatsUp Gold as a strong solution for mid-sized organizations that want to monitor and map their network assets, and the dependencies of those assets.

Solarwinds logo

SolarWinds is a leading IT software vendor headquartered in Texas, US. SolarWinds specializes in cybersecurity, IT service management, and observability solutions, and offers various network management and monitoring tools that integrate seamlessly with one another to provide a unified, holistic overview of an organization’s network. Network Performance Monitor covers on-prem and cloud network availability then alerts admins to any network issues for faster remediation and to help optimize performance.

SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor Features:

  • Network visualization maps automatically detect and map all the devices on the network and their dependencies
  • Single-page path analysis shows IT teams all devices, applications, vendors, and networks to help isolate performance issues more quickly
  • IT teams can create alerts based on simple or complex nested trigger conditions to ensure they’re receiving critical notifications while helping to reduce alert fatigue
  • Support for Microsoft Azure cloud environments and private clouds with Cisco ACI monitoring and troubleshooting

Pricing And Plans: Pricing for SolarWinds’ Network Performance Monitor starts at £1,354, with subscription and perpetual licensing options available.

Expert Insights; Comments: SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor is robust, yet easy-to-use network monitoring tool that helps IT teams identify and troubleshoot network performance issues across on-prem, cloud, and hybrid network services. We recommend SolarWinds’ solution as a strong network monitoring tool for mid-sized to large enterprises.

Zabbix Logo

Headquartered in Riga, Latvia, Zabbix is an open-source monitoring and alerting platform that tracks the performance and availability of network devices, services, servers, and other assets. Zabbix offers enterprise-level network monitoring with features such as high availability, support for on-prem and cloud networks, and distributed monitoring. As it is an open-source tool, it’s completely free to use.

Zabbix Features:

  • Performance monitoring of a wide range of out-of-the-box metrics and incidents, including performance metrics (e.g., bandwidth usage, system state), health metrics (e.g., device temperature, critical system status), and configuration changes (e.g., new device added, firmware upgraded)
  • Performance metrics can be customized by adding new items, writing custom data collection scripts, and building templates from scratch
  • Auto-discovery of network devices and configuration changes
  • Out-of-the-box templates for popular devices such as Cisco and Dell enable robust device monitoring, with pre-configured triggers, graphs, applications, screens, and discovery rules for each template
  • Support for SNMP, IPMI, IPv6 and active/passive metric collection methods and protocols
  • Proactive monitoring enables IT teams to predict network downtimes and bandwidth usage so they can more effectively identify anomalies in their network load
  • Support for LDAP authentication and encryption of all monitoring traffic between Zabbix and network devices help to ensure the security of monitoring data

Pricing And Plans: Zabbix is free for commercial and non-commercial use, with an unlimited numbered of monitored devices.

Expert Insights’ Comments: On top of their network monitoring software, Zabbix also offers a range of consultancy services, technical support options, and professional training. We recommend Zabbix as a strong network monitoring and management solution for small-to mid-sized organizations looking for a scalable, high-availability tool that will help them identify and remediate network performance issues.

The Top 10 Network Monitoring And Management Software