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Tool Behavior Exercise - Netscout Optiview XG

I’ve been preaching, “pick the right tool for the job” for years. The other day someone had an excellent question and asked me, “How do you know what the right tool is?”.

I explained that many times it can be pretty obvious. For example, reach for the RJ45 crimper when an end is damaged and needs to be replaced, or when you make your own patch cable.

Other times, it gets tricky since many of your tools may overlap with the functionality of your other tools. For example, an Optiview XG can capture packets, generate traffic, test cables, perform device discovery, use SNMP to monitor, etc.

Just want to change gears for a moment. I replied that many times the more important question, is, “do you know how your tool behaves?”. I mentioned that because the answer to that question plays into which tool you reach for.

I noticed that most analysts always reach for their trusty tool or software that they’ve been using for X years because they understand how it behaves, can interpret the data returned, and are very familiar navigating around the tool.

In this video, I reach for my Optiview to show you how easy it is to perform very quick basic tasks and pay attention to how the tool reacts. In this example, an analyst was telling me that he didn’t use the Optiview for auto-negotiation related issues because he thought you have to restart the software every time. I didn’t correct him but asked how do you know, and he replied, “that's what Joe told me”. I then told him to get the Optiview XG and we’ll see for ourselves.

The moral of the story is don’t just blindly take someone else’s word when you can quickly figure it out yourself. Don’t forget that software upgrades might affect your tool’s behavior.



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