Eurofins US uses Scrutinizer NetFlow Analyzer to Investigate Network Traffic, Even After Hours

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Eurofins US is a commercial laboratory network with 12 locations throughout the United States. The Eurofins IT Department manages an MPLS network for its locations wherein 10 sites are satellite locations linked back to the two main locations via T-1 lines. They are currently monitoring 14 routers that are exporting NetFlow.

Eurofins US is a commercial laboratory network with 12 locations throughout the United States. The Eurofins IT Department manages an MPLS network for its locations wherein 10 sites are satellite locations linked back to the two main locations via T-1 lines. They are currently monitoring 14 routers that are exporting NetFlow.

Eurofins’ goal is to be the bioanalytical company of choice for the US food, feed, pet food, animal health, dietary supplement, pharmaceutical, and biotech industries. Their strength lies in their commitment to outstanding client service, high quality standards and scientific excellence.

In order to provide their high level of quality and security, the Eurofins IT team needed a tool that could provide network insight and data trending to explain the reports of slow network connectivity at various times of the day, even after hours. To answer their questions, they obtained Scrutinizer NetFlow & sFlow Analyzer from Plixer International, Inc.

Network Administrator Steve Kociolek was familiar with Scrutinizer prior to joining the team at Eurofins, so he was pleased to learn that Eurofins had secured the network monitoring software. He leverages the NetFlow reports on a daily basis and uses Scrutinizer to diagnose and resolve common network issues.

For example, a user recently notified Kociolek that slow connectivity was impacting business activity at a satellite location, so Kociolek immediately turned to Scrutinizer and confirmed the site’s link was 80% utilized. After drilling in and conducting NetFlow Analysis, he recognized a historical traffic trend of 5 minute spikes in utilization every 15 minutes wherein every spike used over 80% of the T-1. This had been occurring for several hours and was coming from the Microsoft WSUS server.

After further investigation, the team narrowed the issue down to a hung process that was trying to sync a file with a peer server. “The traffic pattern in Scrutinizer led us right to the server, allowing the server administration team to quickly resolve the situation,” Kociolek said.

The IT team also uses Scrutinizer to observe network traffic after hours. On one occasion, Kociolek observed excessive HTTP traffic and drilled in to find data pouring in from an internet site. "I could see the word ‘streaming’ in the DNS name of the source host, so I was immediately suspicious," he said. He was able to trace the traffic back to an employee who was working late and also trying to catch up on the World Cup games.

On another occasion, Kociolek was performing historical analysis to help understand the long term behaviors of Eurofins’s business applications. During his analysis, he discovered a connection that was uncharacteristically saturated with traffic at 9:00pm, well after normal business hours. He used Scrutinizer to narrow into the traffic and determine the source as an engineering machine. After further investigation, he discovered that a software developer was running system updates after hours.

Eurofins’s primary use of Scrutinizer is to prevent overutilization and subsequent business interruption, but they have also used Scrutinizer to mitigate viruses, to validate employee access to legitimate websites, and to prevent security threats, even after hours. They frequently use Scrutinizer to review past network traffic and confirm it is at a healthy state or to suggest rerouting traffic or increasing the size of the line. Scrutinizer’s reports are also used as training tools for the company. “We use Scrutinizer constantly because it keeps us on top of our network,” Kociolek said. “It's almost impossible for something to slip past us unnoticed."

In addition to Eurofins US, other companies providing laboratory and medical technology services have also recognized the benefits of using Scrutinizer for their network traffic analysis. Organizations such as IDEXX Labs, TestAmerica Labs, and Intertek have begun taking advantage of Scrutinizer’s advanced NetFlow reporting capabilities.

About Plixer International, Inc.
Plixer International, Inc. develops and markets network traffic monitoring and NetFlow analysis tools to the global market. All of the sFlow, IPFIX and NetFlow tools are built from the ground up with valuable feature sets and ease of use in mind. Plixer tools have been used to analyze and troubleshoot irregular network traffic patterns by IT professionals with some of the largest networks in the world, such as AT&T, Toyota, CNN, The Coca-Cola Company, Lockheed Martin, IBM, Regal Cinemas, Raytheon, and Eddie Bauer.

For product and sales information, contact Plixer International, Inc. at 1 Eagle Drive, Sanford, Maine, via telephone 207-324-8805, via fax 207-324-8683, or through the Plixer website at http://www.plixer.com.

For more information about this press release, please call Jon Mills with Plixer International at 207-324-8805.

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Jon Mills
Plixer International, Inc.
207-324-8805
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