Network management company NetScout has launched an entry level version of its infiniStream range.
The InfiniStream 2900 Series appliance, which is aimed at branch an remote offices, is a lower capacity member of the nGenius family, employing the same deep packet capture technology of its bigger cousin.

NetScout bought venerable network monitoring company Network General, developer of the Sniffer range, for a knockdown price in 2007. Deep Packet Capture, the technology used by NetScout combinespacket analysis with storage, and helps sysadmins to resolve problems more rapidly.

Steve Shalita, VP of marketing for NetScout said the thinking behind the product was to help network managers to work out what had gone wrong rather than just telling them there had been a problem. "With this new product, we've introduced packet forensics. This is a step up from probe technology- which historically is the method that had been used - the 2900 series offers much better performance analysis."

He said that data centres were already using this type of product but "frankly data centre products were re too big and too expensive. That's why we've introduced a low end version and brought the price down to $20,000," he said.

The appliance will greatly improve network deployment within an organisation with several remote offices, according to Shalita. It will help solve problems quickly, he said. "Once you get this level of packet information you can sort out a problem almost immediately. Think of that box as a 24-hour always-on recorder," he added.

The 2900 Series had been designed not to impact on the network said Shalita. There's no overhead, he pointed out, "The impact on the network is zero as all the processing is done locally in the device - this has sufficient capacity itself. The only thing that it sends is the result," he said.