Background: Know: NM, NOCFault management

Recognize: Prerequisites: Autonomous System






Why NM/NOC is challenging


With the ongoing technological growth, the increasing number of users in addition to the great demand for high speed communication and high data usage have increased systematically, communication network are becoming more and more complex and interconnected every second in terms of hardware components such as routers, switches, links and Interfaces, in addition to the various software with increased complexity to configure these components all interact together through protocols. The hardware complexity is represented in processes such as Forwarding, Buffering, Traffic Management and packet classification, while the software complexity is represented in the different software’s and applications from different vendors for different purposes.Hidden information is a principle which was employed in computer science field. However, it also can be seen in the field of networking particularly in Ip Tunnelling, where as an IPv6 payload can be encapsulated in IPv4 datagrams and sent to destination. This operation of Encapsulation is regarded as a technique of information hiding.

Distributed Systems:

A distributed system is defined as” a collection of independent computers that appear to its users as a single coherent system”(Tanenbaum and Steen 2007).An Example of a distributed system is the World Wide Web (www.) which is basically a number servers interacting over hyperlinks using HTTP protocol and jointly connected to provide a distributed database of hypertext and multimedia documents. DNS is yet another example of a distributed system which consists of a large number of servers organized and allocated in a hierarchical fashion (Zones) and spread all over the globe.With these examples and with the increasing complexity of maintaining data consistency and integrity for all network components due to the technological changes in all network components, it is becoming challenging for the network manager to maintain and ensure that backup systems will work even if other systems collapse. Therefore, security procedures and redundancy procedures are required to ensure that the system keep running, this is done by implementing troubleshooting devices that perform operations even the system encounters failure at a certain level, here are some examples of troubleshooting scenarios in distributed systems:

  • Network congestion
  • CPU overload
  • Crash in some software components
  • Inconsistent logging levels


The Internet (Network of Networks) is the dominant distributed system at the current time, which consists of numerous [x Autonomous Systems] (AS)(aka “networks”) and different ISP’s in which each has it is own functional structure and policies.With the existence of a large number of components from different Equipment vendors, which uses diverse applications and software platforms from Different Application vendors, networks are increasing in complexity. The fact that the network is stuffed with numerous components that each produces a certain service, management is becoming even more challenging day by day since there is no certain equipment that satisfies all management needs.

Vendor Competition:

The world of networking have changed dramatically in recent years, this change was essentially due to competition between both Hardware and software vendors. Although users see more advantages in this change such as improved services and reduced cost. However, from the ISP’s perspective this competition is unfavourable, since it leads to extra cost and effort categorized as operational cost and equipment cost as an outcome of operations such as upgrading, configuring, implementing and modifying the network (Clemm 2007).


Clemm, A 2007, Network Management Fundamentals, Cisco press, pp. 19-20.Tanenbaum, A & Steen, M 2007, Distributed Systems: Principles and Paradigms, Prentice Hall, second edition.