Weekly Network Knowledge Challenge QUIZ from The Network Heroes! (by: The ProfiTAP Team)

For the next 14 weeks the Network Heroes will be asking you the challenge questions.

See if you can answer all 14, correctly!!!

Click here - for the ProfiTAP website Every Monday for the Latest Question! - Click here!

Chris GreerChris heroChris is the Founder and  Chief Network Analyst for Packet Pioneer LLC

Supporting clients in several regions of the USA, Latin America, and the Caribbean, Chris assists IT professionals in resolving the root cause of network and application performance problems.
Chris also develops and delivers Network Analysis and Troubleshooting courses featuring analyzers such as Wireshark. 
Chris is also a founding and still a writer for WWW.LoveMyTool.com

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How To Work Voice Search Into Your SEO Plan (by John Gumas)

How To Work Voice Search Into Your SEO Plan

Search engine optimization has been a vital part of digital marketing for the past two decades, and SEO has shown no signs of slowing down. However, the way people search for information has begun to change, with voice search rising to prominence. Services like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant have changed the way people interact with their devices and, by extension, the Internet as a whole.

It’s estimated that half of all Web searches will be done through voice search within five years. Therefore, it’s in your best interest to make your site friendly to voice searches. It’s a rewarding way to ensure that your SEO strategy remains sharp as search strategies evolve.

Voice Searches vs. Text Searches

One important thing to consider is the nature of typing in comparison with our normal speech patterns. We don’t talk the same way we write. Therefore, the way in which people search via text isn’t identical to the way that people search with their voices. Understanding this distinction is key for adapting your site to incorporate voice search.

If you don’t see the differences right away, try doing some voice searches of your own and see how they differ from your text-based searches. You’ll find that voice searches are longer and include some extra verbiage that isn’t typically included in text searches. Use these differences as the basis for your voice SEO methodology.

Incorporate Long-Tailed Keywords

You should already be utilizing long-tailed keywords, which allow your site to show up on specific searches where your business is an ideal match for the searcher. It’s especially important, though, when voice search comes into play. After all, since a voice search is longer than a text search, it’s also more detailed and more specific. The nuances of a search that people can’t be bothered to type suddenly become important in voice search.

Be sure to include factors commonly included in local SEO, such as the location and specialty of your business, in your site. It also helps to have some phrases that people might actually say as they search for a company. For instance, you might not type “store with basketball shoes” into a search bar, but you may well speak such a phrase to your virtual assistant.

Google My Business

If you haven’t claimed your Google My Business listing, now is the time to do so. This is vital for one simple reason. When you type in a search keyword and click “Search”, the search engine gives you a page full of results. When you do a voice search through Alexa or Siri, though, you’ll only get the top answer delivered through the search engine. In other words, if you’re not first, you’re last.

Claiming your My Google Business listing ensures that Google will have the most up to date information about your business. That makes it much easier for any voice assistant to recommend your business or to dial your number. Missing this crucial step opens many doors for competing businesses to take your sale away from you.

Other Voice Search Tips

Here are some other factors to consider as you incorporate voice search:

  • Ensure mobile optimization. The vast majority of voice searches are conducted through mobile devices. If your site isn’t mobile-friendly, it won’t be considered for a voice search inquiry.
  • Add a Frequently Asked Questions page. A FAQ page is a great place to cover a lot of the questions people may have – and the search terms they may use – as they consider your business. This will help all aspects of your SEO, and it’ll be a great resource for consumers.
  • Keep it simple. According to a Backlinko study, Google voice searches are read at a ninth-grade reading level. Your site should be written in an easy-to-digest manner that makes it easy for search engines to return the right information. The complicated text will result in the search engines finding a better option for a voice searcher.

Voice search is only going to get more popular in the years to come. The time to start incorporating voice search into your SEO strategy is right now. To learn more about how to prepare your site for voice search, contact us today.

Author - This article was written by John and Team - John Gumas is the Founder and President of Gumas Advertising, a San Francisco based full service branding, advertising and interactive marketing agency that specializes in Challenger Brand Marketing. John is considered one of the country’s foremost authorities on Challenger Brand Marketing and is the author of the popular book on the subject entitled “Marketing Smart.” Check out John’s book at www.marketingsmartbook.com/

*Editor's Note - The Oldcommguy - John is an awesome friend and a very seasoned professional marketing expert. I have had the pleasure of working with John and Team and if you need Branding and/or Marketing assistance the Gumas Team is the Very Best Team and I highly recommend them!

Read some more of John's Articles on Challenger Brands! - 

Create-marketing-materials-that-make-an-impact-by-john-gumas

Name-your-start-up-company-tool-by-john-gumas

Does-your-website-pass-the-abc-test-by-john-gumas

Your-three-marketing-target-audiences-by-john-gumas

How-to-build-a-successful-marketing-program-if-you-are-a-challenger-brand-by-john-gumas


Solving Network Issues - Machine Learning - The IT Sorcerer’s Apprentice! (by John Kerber)

The IT Sorcerer’s Apprentice!

It_apprentice

Machine learning seemed an odd fit at first. Our company was formed as a simple network discovery tool, as reliable and useful as a carpenter’s hammer. If you don’t know us at Who’s On My WiFi, we started off by offering a platform-agnostic ARP scanning tool to discover connected devices on a network over time.  Our company path changed drastically when we started saving all the information we were scanning.  We made an important discovery: WWW.WhoIsOnMyWiFi.com

Large amounts of network data is useless without some way to make sense of all that information!

For example, the first problem people tried to solve using our software was detecting if an unknown device suddenly joined the network.

We initially required that customers tag devices as KNOWN, and then they could be alerted to any UNKNOWN devices.  But there is a problem with this, especially on larger networks.  Tagging devices is time-consuming and requires constant updating to be useful. Our customers’ IT managers would be tasked with tagging staff and network devices, while reporting on guests that entered their building. It was an up-front workload compounded by the inevitable influx of new devices or [shudders] network equipment overhauls.

The next problem people started solving with our basic network detection was trying to determine the number of people using a public WiFi network over time.  Although this sounds simple, to get accurate usage patterns, again, there is an up front cost of going through and tagging all equipment that could possibly be on a public WiFi network to exclude it.  Otherwise, always on devices like network equipment or printers incorrectly impacted the results.  And what about employees using the public WiFi?  Should they be counted as visitors or not?

To painstakingly go through a large public venue, tag all switches, APs, as well as employee equipment and smartphones was too much maintenance for IT administrators to keep up with.

Enter Machine Learning. 

 

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4 Ways to Transform Your Packet Capture Workflow (by Zach Chadwick)

When there is a technical problem here at QA Cafe, like you, we go straight to the packets.

 

We’ve been building test solutions for network devices since CDRouter debuted in 2002. Over that time we have learned that the sooner you can put a trace file of a problem in front of someone, the sooner they’ll be able to give you an answer about it.

 

CloudShark Enterprise grew out of our own need to manage and communicate around network capture files. Along the way we’ve learned some best practices for packet capture management. By prioritizing sharing and collaboration, these approaches will transform your workflow to make packet captures work for you.

  Cloudshark-gerald-quote

 

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LMTV with Christian Ferenz - Why you need a modern Packet Broker – The evolution of Packet Broker features!

LMTV special with Christian Ferenz

Why you need a modern Packet Broker?

Special focus on the evolution of Packet Broker features and how they enhance network performance and security monitoring

 https://youtu.be/go4t1CXJDM0 

In today’s world of large and complex networks, enterprises and carriers often find it challenging, if not overwhelming, to manage their networks, minimise outages, and troubleshoot performance issues. All data centres and enterprises MUST look to secure and manage their growing network traffic demands, improve productivity, and reduce MTTR by having complete network visibility. An estimate from Gartner reveals the hourly cost of downtime for computer networks at $42,000.

Here are some more figures for network downtime.

  • 98% of organisations say a single hour of downtime costs over $100,000
  • 81% of respondents indicated that 60 minutes of downtime costs their business over $300,000
  • 33% of those enterprises reported that one hour of downtime costs their firms $1-5 million

*Source: Information Technology Intelligence Consulting Research

Network outages can result in millions of dollars per hour losses. A lack of visibility can lead to domain-based 'blame games' between different operational departments; Network Engineers pointing the finger at the Security Team while they, in turn, are holding the Developers accountable. When each department is collecting information from their own individual sources that data can be confusing and contradictory because no one has the complete picture. Network outages and network downtime are costly for business because its real value is much more than you see.

A Network Packet Broker (NPB) is necessary to ensure that everyone has complete access to the network and that every monitoring and security tool has all of the data required to properly perform its function. Network Packet Brokers have traditionally been used to aggregate and distribute network traffic to various network appliances; filtering and load-balancing the traffic to optimize it for each tool’s requirements.  Handling network traffic at OSI Layers 2-4 has been instrumental for organizations in avoiding costly downtime and gaining the visibility and insight needed to deal with sluggish application performance, unexpected outages, security issues, and network failures.

As modern networks continue to evolve, with exponentially growing bandwidth speeds and increasingly distributed infrastructure, so too must the Network Packet Broker evolve. An increasing number of monitoring requirements are no longer sufficiently addressed by L2-4 filtering criteria so a more advanced and granular approach must be taken to handle network traffic at the Session layer and above. This is the need that Cubro’s cutting-edge EXA platform and next-generation G5 Packet Brokers were designed to fulfill.

Visibility!! Easy and accurate Focused Visibility… If you cannot see, you will never know, Our Motto!!


Why Bother with Ethernet Cabling. (by Tony Fortunato)

I think there is a balance between doing it yourself and calling the professionals. If it’s a straight forward manageable task and you have the correct tools and knowledge, why not.

For example, I wouldn’t climb an 80 foot tower, pull and terminate 120 pairs of Ethernet cabling or try to terminate fibre connectors.

While working onsite I was asked “Why bother?“ or “We’ll get someone else to do that”. Some people feel that some network tasks are too menial or beneath them. I’ve had some network technicians ask why I would bother doing ‘that kind of work’ when you have had various certifications.

There are many answers; I like the variety, I enjoy keeping my skills sharp, and the job gets done quicker. I find I can add more value to a design or install since I have physically done the work as opposed to just reading the materials. The bonus is that when I watch people do incorrect installations, I have more things to look for when troubleshooting problems.

Here’s a simple example: we had to pull and terminate 3 Ethernet cables as part of an install. The technician said “let’s just call the cabling company to do it”. I asked how long that would take and he responded 2 to 3 days. I reminded him that I was only there for the day and added that it would not take us long to pull three cables 20 feet and terminate them ourselves. The cables were a straight run in the cabling trays above our heads.

Just a quick disclaimer; if you have no experience terminating cables, do not practice or learn on your production environment. Fortunately I have been terminating Ethernet cables for over 20 years, so this is a fairly simple process. I went to my vehicle and got a spool of cable, some RJ 45 connectors as well as my crimper. Fortunately, I had assumed that I might need to do this type of work and had prepared myself with the proper supplies and my vehicle.

Flashback; I will never forget working with network consultants at a new build and I was the only one with tools, a hard hat and my government safety certificates, even though everyone was told this is a construction area. The other consultants  were limited when, and where they could work where I had the run of the place.

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