Have you ever found yourself in a position where throughput between devices, either local or across a WAN, seemed lower than expected? You may start by checking the configuration and logs on the network devices along the path, hoping to identify something out of the ordinary or unusual. Often a smoking gun isn’t immediately identifiable which then requires a coordinated approach to troubleshooting and narrowing down the potential causes. This write-up aims to provide some of the practices and tools I’ve used in similar situations.
It’s approaching 10pm on Friday night and you are getting ready to apply your IWAN / Routing Protocol / <Insert major project of your choosing> migration script to the very last of your branch site routers. You have been saving this branch till last for a very special reason. This is after all that branch site that is in the furthest darkest corner of the globe. Your company of course has no local IT resource there and even if they did its probably that site that you can only get to via 3-hour snowmobile ride. This is the site that has the potential to really ruin your weekend. But hey that’s why we left it until last right. We have applied our configurations to our other 10 sites without a hitch, you have this change down pat. At this rate, you might even make it to the bar in time celebrate your success with a couple of well-earned adult beverages.
So, you have invested in the latest generation of security appliances with their application aware policy capabilities, integrated IDS/IPS and URL filtering. All your endpoint devices have been deployed with the newest Advanced Malware Protection agents using the latest machine learning technology. You subscribe to the CVE feed and have a well-defined procedure to patch your entire environment at the first hint of a zero-day exploit. System and policy changes are required to go through rigorous change control, and if that’s not enough all your employees have been subjected to intensive information security training. One might think it’s time to relax put your feet up and grab yourself a nice cup of tea or favorite adult beverage.
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