HOW TO LEVERAGE A FLOW MATRIX FOR NETWORK MONITORING !
A flow matrix is a representation of the IP traffic map; it can be used in many ways to troubleshoot, monitor and optimize network infrastructures.
Let's take a closer look at all the use cases for the traffic matrix!
WHAT IS A TRAFFIC / FLOW MATRIX?
Here is a general definition of a traffic matrix: « it is an abstract representation of the traffic volume flowing between sets of source and destination pairs. Each element in the matrix denotes the amount of traffic between a source and destination pair. There are many variants: depending on the network layer under study, sources and destinations could be routers or even whole networks. And “Amount” is generally measured in the number of bytes or packets, but could refer to other quantities such as connections.
Nevertheless, a flow matrix can use other grouping criteria (e.g. VLAN) and other metrics than the traffic volume (number of packets, sessions, performance metrics, etc…).
Although network traffic matrix's are most used by network engineering teams to drive network optimizations, designs and anomaly detection, the use cases for flow matrix correspond to very distinct situations.
DIFFERENT USE CASES
Here is a list of common uses of flow mapping :
- Traffic volume and geography analysis
Network engineers and architects need data to drive their design and optimization decisions. In complex and highly distributed networks, keeping track of all types of network usage is a complex task. A network flow matrix is a way to represent this complexity in a simple way.