Last week I had a great time at Cisco Live in Vegas. NetBeez had a booth in the World of Solutions as well in the Cisco Investments Pavilion. If you were there, you may recognize our booth and some of the team: This was my second time at Cisco Live. The first time was in 2012 in San Diego as an attendee, when I was a network engineer eager to learn new things. This time, with NetBeez, the desire to learn new things was paired with wanting to meet network engineers to find out what they think about NetBeez. My mission was achieved, as I met many network engineers because there were so many! Check out this picture, I think there were about 28,000 participants.
As part of NetBeez’s participation in Cisco Live, we also had the opportunity to hold a session on “Distributed Network Monitoring with Raspberry Pi.” The presentation covered the following topics:
- Why distributed network monitoring is important for enterprises that have many network locations and monitoring servers located at the data center
- How the Raspberry Pi, a low-cost and powerful single board mini computer, enabled network engineers to collect active performance information from multiple remote points, wired and wifi
- Differences between SNMP monitoring, which is mostly used to gather the MIB status of routers/switches/etc, passive monitoring, which is used to discover how network links are utilized (e.g. top talkers, top protocols, etc.), and active monitoring, which provides quick detection and fault isolation of problems that are generally perceived by the users, like slow web browsing, sucky wireless, and low Internet throughput.
- How easy it is to implement distributed network monitoring by plugging in Raspberry Pis at the access layer’s switches, or connecting them to the wireless network, just like a regular client
- A simple use case of a NetBeez user that deployed Raspberry Pis at remote offices to test connectivity back to the data center or cloud
I believe that our session boasted one of the highest attendances. We had many interested network engineers that asked lots of good questions at the end of the session. If you want to see a recording of the presentation, and the Q&A session we had in the end, you can check it out here. You can also download the presentation slides here.
I also found that that our “beez” were not the only special guests of Cisco Live. We also found this interesting project that applies small sensors to real bees to collect information about their habits and other interesting things. Remember, Albert Einstein was quoted saying “If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live.” If we don’t take good care of bees, we will suffer.
The cherry on top was Bruno Mars entertaining the crowd at the Customer Appreciation Event. The concert was at T-Mobile Arena, which was lit up by thousands of blinking fedora hats provided by Cisco. Uber cool!
If you attended Cisco Live as well, I would love to hear your impressions. Let me know what you think about it, what you learned, and who you met. In the end, it’s all about networking 🙂