Networks are getting bigger by the day with more and more devices added and connecting to the said network every day. There are tons of network devices present in a network and keeping track of all the devices can be quite the job. This especially gets hard when you are not using the proper tools or you may not be aware of the correct tools that would have otherwise made your job way easier than it was. Having information about your network devices is quite important when it comes to networking and from a network administrator’s perspective.
This includes knowing which device is connected to which port or switch and more. Such details are invaluable to a network administrator as they can help narrow down several issues and even help troubleshooting issues that a device might be fixing.
Switch Port MapperEvery network has a limit or a capacity that has to be taken into consideration while managing a network. Network administrators often waste valuable time in figuring out which device is connected to what port or if a problematic switch is causing a device to face issues.
Capacity planning becomes a hurdle if you are not aware of the switch capabilities, which includes duplex, speed, present traffic and more, or the port utilization. In such cases, a third-party tool has to be used to make do with the situation.
There are several tools that will tell you where a device is connected in a network, however, none would match the number of details and the extra information provided by the tool in this guide.
Downloading the Switch Port Mapper
SPM is built into Engineers Toolset by Solarwinds (download here) and it is a remarkable product that packs more than 60 tools that makes your daily networking more fun and easier. It’s the perfect suite for network administrators as you are able to make use of more than 60 tools that are extremely useful in network management. To be able to follow through this guide, you will need to have the toolset installed on your system as we will be using a tool that is included in this toolset.
Solarwinds offer an evaluation period of fourteen days for their best tools and utilities for network engineers if you wish to evaluate the product for yourself before you buy the product.
What is Switch Port Mapper?
Switch Port Mapper is one the great tools that come in the Engineers toolset. With the help of Switch Port Mapper, you will be able to discover the network devices that are connected to each port on a hub and switch. In addition to that, it also displays the MAC addresses, IP addresses, host names of the connected devices and more details which also include the operational state of the ports. With all this information, you will be able to know when an interface is down and what ports are functioning properly and which devices are having issues.
Tracking and Troubleshooting Endpoint Devices Connected in a Network
In this guide, we will be showing how you can track down and troubleshoot your endpoint devices that are connected to your network. This is very simple and can be easily done via the Switch Port Mapper. All you need is an IP address of the device and the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) community string. The rest of the work will be done by the tool in mere seconds. So, without further ado, let us get into it.
- Open up the Engineers Toolset Launch Pad.
- After that, on the left-hand side, click on the Network Discovery option. Then, click on the Launch button under the Switch Port Mapper tool and it will launch. Alternatively, you can just type Switch Port Mapper in the search field to locate the tool.
- Once the tool has loaded, you will be asked to provide details of your switch. So, go ahead and provide the IP address of the switch or a layer 3 switch and then follow it up with an SNMP string.
- Afterward, click the Map Ports button to begin mapping of ports.
- Shortly after, you will be able to see the details of that specific switch and the devices that are connected to it along with the port speed, type of interface and the operational status of each port.
- If you wish to view more details, you can do so by clicking the Settings option and then moving whatever information you wish to see to the right block using the keys provided. To do so, just select an entry and then hit the right arrow key button and you will be able to see a new column with new details.
- Additionally, you can also go to the Port Map Settings to customize the table as well as the switch settings.
- With the help of the Operational Status Icon, you will be able to see what interfaces are up and when an interface goes down so that an early resolution can be ensured. To help with that, the Admin Status Icon column shows the administrative state of the interface/port. The devices that are connected to a port are listed under the Interface Alias column by their host name so you are aware of each and every device connected to the switch.