Use Cases

Troubleshooting End-User, VPN, and Network Path Performance Issues With NETSCOUT


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l USE CASE l E N T E R P R I S E Issue This centralized government IT team faced a not-unusual scenario as agency workforces transitioned to work-from-home (WFH) environments – VPN login delays experienced at the start of their workdays prompted employees to contact their respective Help Desk resources for support. These service tickets were subsequently relayed to the centralized IT Operations team for troubleshooting and resolution. When thousands of government users concurrently attempted to login around 9 a.m. each day, IT Operations easily determined VPN performance was sluggish but could not identify root cause. These reports troubled IT Operations, as they had just deployed new VPN concentrators to support WFH users, as well as additional firewall and proxy technologies. Impact In this case, these VPN performance delays impacted government technologists providing mission-critical business services support to other agencies. With numerous users experiencing these VPN performance delays, this was an issue that need to be addressed quickly, both to ensure employee productivity and efficient government operations, as well as protect the IT organization's reputation for quality service delivery. As changes to the network can trigger unexpected performance issues, uncovering the true nature of this degradation was a priority. Beyond needing to improve performance and service access to WFH users, IT Operations was determined to find whether the root cause was related to new VPN concentrators, which were added to provide additional virtual network bandwidth, or the recent investments in firewall and proxy technologies. Troubleshooting The agency's IT Operations team collaborated with their contracted NETSCOUT ® Engineer to leverage nGeniusONE ® analytics and service edge visibility provided by installed InfiniStreamNG ® (ISNG) appliances with integrated NETSCOUT Adaptive Service Intelligence ® (ASI) technology to begin quick troubleshooting of this VPN performance issue. In making use of ASI-generated smart data that fueled nGeniusONE analytics, IT Operations employed a standard workflow to provide a single-screen view into network links along the VPN service path. With contextual drill-down to the Universal Monitor, IT Operations selected a "TCP Analysis" view to determine whether any TCP-level issues were responsible for the delays, such as TCP Server/ Client and retransmission percentages or Server/Client duplicate acknowledgments. Troubleshooting End-User, VPN, and Network Path Performance Issues With NETSCOUT By now, enterprises, government agencies, and service providers all recognize the indispensable role that virtual private networks (VPNs) serve in their hybrid workforce environments. Simply put, Information Technology (IT) Operations cannot assure high-quality end-user experience or reliable business service performance without dependable VPN performance. However, as evidenced in this Use Case, even expert-level IT Operations resources can be surprised by how NETSCOUT's Visibility Without Borders approach helps identify unexpected dependencies in the network path essential for troubleshooting, root cause analysis, and service restoration.

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