Reflection Blog 10 – Matt Alexander

21 – 25 August. This week I’ve learned more about network monitoring and scripting. While at ReedSmith we use a program Solarwinds that I’ve mentioned before. Though this is a third party application that we use, it does take some 3rd tier scripting and programming knowledge to tailor the WAN monitoring and administration of nodes using the program. Working with a co-worker, he showed me how he was using the SQL database for stored information concerning the pulses of the network. Using this scripting and applications reports through wmi for windows or snmp for sending information which can then be analyzed and put into monitoring charts. These small monitors being sent frequently create a scheme that helps troubleshooting across different architectures which involve many departments or 3rd party business software. Based on the network size of ReedSmith, it is truly amazing because everything that we’ve learned in our classes and for the business side of our degree can be shown and is seen on many levels here at ReedSmith.

I am also learning how to manage and set up a datacenter, while working at monitoring, troubleshooting, and Level 1 support of higher systems. I’ve helped monitor and set up the new office which is taking a few weeks to set up, so that systems that are required for secured communications are ready for our cases and law firm. The systems are especially needed since half the office is currently working for ReedSmith and the other half is still independent. It’s very much corporate politics, but our requirement is for networking and communication systems. Being part of the setup and how a new office is integrated has helped me understand the protocols and troubleshooting problems that come up when a new piece is added to the whole of the large architecture. This in total has been a great learning experience since most situations are different and the large architecture is integrated to make a smooth communications transitions over many different platforms with redundancy. I’ve been very lucky in being a part of this experience and am learning a lot very fast.

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