A Comprehensive List Of The Best Paid And Free Network Monitoring Tools And Software In 2021:
Network Monitoring is the process of monitoring network components like routers, switches, firewalls, servers, etc.
Network Monitoring Tool is an application that gathers useful information from different parts of the network. It will help in managing and controlling the network. The focus of network monitoring will be on performance monitoring, fault monitoring, and account monitoring.
It is used for examining the components like applications, email servers, etc. In order to examine the network or its internal components, it sends a signal or Ping to the various system ports.
Network Monitoring should be proactive and that will help in finding the problem at an early stage. It has the capability to prevent downtime or failure.
The Below image will show you the important factors of Network Monitoring.
Let’s see the precise description for each step of the above diagram.
The first step from the figure can be called as ‘Monitoring the Essentials’. Faulty network components can hamper the network’s performance. Continuous network monitoring needs to be performed in order to avoid this. Hence, the first step of this process is to monitor such devices and performance metrics.
The second step will be deciding the monitoring interval. Monitoring interval depends on the network components. Example: Components like desktop and printers don’t require frequent monitoring while the components like servers and routers need frequent monitoring.
Network management protocol should be secure and non-bandwidth consuming. Network management protocol will minimize its impact on network performance. Linux servers and maximum network devices use SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) and CLI protocols. Windows devices use WMI protocol.
SNMP agent is enabled and configured to have communication with the Network Management System (NMS). SNMP Read & Write access will give someone the entire access for the device.
Real-time network monitoring should be able to find the performance bottlenecks proactively. The threshold will play a major role in this. Threshold limits will change, according to the device and business use case. Thus you need to configure the threshold for proactive network monitoring.
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What You Will Learn:
- Importance of Network Monitoring
- List of Top Network Monitoring Tools
- Comparison Table for Network Monitoring Tools
- #1) SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor
- #2) NinjaRMM
- #3) Datadog
- #4) Obkio
- #5) ManageEngine OpManager
- #6) Site24x7 Network Monitoring
- #7) Auvik
- #8) Atera
- #9) PRTG Network Monitor
- #10) Nagios
- #11) Zabbix
- #12) LogicMonitor
- #13) Icinga
- #14) Spiceworks
- #15) WhatsUp Gold
Importance of Network Monitoring
Network Monitoring is important for security, troubleshooting, and to save time & money. It will help in keeping your information secure by monitoring the network for any issues. Network monitoring tools will have troubleshooting capabilities.
It saves time and money that could be required for the investigation in case of any issues. This technology will give you visibility and you will be able to plan for the changes accordingly.
Pro Tip: Effective network monitoring software should have the following features that you should consider while selecting the network monitoring software.
- Your selected network monitoring solution should be able to monitor your entire IT infrastructure.
- There should be an automatic configuration of devices.
- The solution should be able to monitor and troubleshoot network, server, and application performance.
- The solution should be using advanced network performance monitoring techniques.
- Advanced reporting capabilities with the facility to schedule it.
List of Top Network Monitoring Tools
Enlisted below are the best Network Monitoring Tools that are available in the market.
- SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor
- ManageEngine OpManager
- Site24x7 Network Monitoring
- PRTG Network Monitor
- WhatsUp Gold
Comparison Table for Network Monitoring Tools
|Tool||Free trial||Platform||Business Size||Deployment||Price|
|SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor||30 days||Windows & Linux||Small, Medium, and Large.||On-Premise||Starts at $2995.|
|NinjaRMM||Available for 30 days||Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, & Android.||Small to medium-sized businesses & freelancers.||On-premises & Cloud-hosted||Get a quote.|
|Datadog||Available||Windows, Mac, Linux, Debian, Ubuntu, CentOS, RedHat, etc.||Small, Medium, & Large businesses||On-premise and SaaS.||Starts at $5/host/month.|
|Obkio||14 Days||Linux, Windows, Mac iOS.||Small, Medium, and Large businesses & single users.||On-premise & Cloud-hosted.||Free plan available.
Paid plans start at $29/ month.
|ManageEngine OpManager||Available for 30 days||Windows,Linux, iOS, and Android.||Small to large businesses||On-premise||Free edition available. It starts at $245 for 10 devices.|
|Site24x7||30 days||Windows & Linux||Small, Medium, and Large.||Cloud||$9/month|
|Auvik||Available||Web-based||Small to large businesses.||Cloud-based||Get a quote|
|Atera||Free Trial is available for all features, on unlimited devices.||Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS devices.||Small, Medium, & Large businesses.||Cloud-hosted||$79 Per Technician, for Unlimited Devices.|
|PRTG Network Monitor||30 days||Windows||Small, Medium, and Large.||Cloud & On-Premises.||Starts at $1600.|
|Nagios||60 days||Windows, Linux, Mac, & UNIX||Small, Medium, and Large.||Cloud & On-Premise.||$1995 for a single license.|
|Zabbix||--||Web-based||Small, Medium, and Large.||Open API||Free.|
|Remote Access Plus||Available 30 days.||Windows, Mac and Linux||Medium Enterprise.||Cloud and On-Premises.||Free forever for 10 computers.
Others start at just $2 per computer.
#1) SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor
Best for Small, medium, and large businesses.
Price: A free trial is available for 30 days. An interactive demo will also be available on request. The price starts at $2995. You can get a quote for more pricing details.
SolarWinds provides the Network Performance monitor that can reduce network outages and improve performance. It is a scalable solution with smarter scalability for large environments.
- It has functionalities for wireless network monitoring and management.
- It will allow you to view the performance metrics for autonomous access points.
- It has features for advanced alerting and auto-generating intelligent maps.
- For the critical network firewalls, switches, and load balancers, SolarWinds will provide a visual representation of performance.
Verdict: SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor has features for multi-vendor network monitoring and SDN monitoring with Cisco ACI support. It provides smarter scalability for robust networks.
Best for: Managed service providers (MSPs), IT service businesses, and SMBs / mid-market companies with small IT departments
NinjaRMM Pricing: NinjaRMM offers a free trial of their product. Ninja is priced on a per-device basis based on the features needed.
NinjaRMM provides powerful intuitive endpoint management software for managed service providers (MSPs) and IT professionals. With Ninja, you get a complete set of tools to monitor, manage, secure, and improve all of your network devices and Windows and Mac workstations, laptops, and servers regardless of their location.
- Monitor the health and performance of all your routers, switches, firewalls, and other SNMP devices.
- Monitor the health and productivity of all your Windows servers, workstations, and laptops, and MacOS devices.
- Get full hardware and software inventories.
- Automate OS and third-party application patching for Windows and MacOS devices with granular controls over features, drivers, and security updates.
- Remotely manage all your devices without interrupting end-users through a robust suite of remote tools.
- Standardize the deployment, configuration, and management of devices with powerful IT automation.
- Directly take control of devices with remote access.
Verdict: NinjaRMM has built a powerful, intuitive IT management platform that drives efficiency, reduces ticket volumes, improves ticket resolution times that IT pros love to use.
Best for small, medium, and large businesses.
Datadog Pricing: Datadog has various pricing plans for Network Performance, Infrastructure, Log Management, etc. Its Network Performance price starts at $5 per host per month. This plan offers features to understand network traffic patterns and search with tags. You can try the platform for free.
Datadog Network Performance Monitoring (NPM) uses a unique, tag-based approach to track the performance of on-premise and cloud-based networks, enabling you to break down network traffic between hosts, containers, services, or any other tag in Datadog.
By combining flow-based NPM with metric-based Network Device Monitoring, teams can get complete visibility into network traffic, infrastructure metrics, traces, and logs – all in one place.
- Datadog Network Performance Monitoring (NPM) enables you to get unprecedented visibility into modern networks using meaningful, human-readable tags.
- It maps the flow of network traffic between hosts, containers, availability zones, and even more abstract concepts like services, teams, or any other tagged category.
- It correlates network traffic data with relevant application traces, host metrics, and logs, to unify troubleshooting into one platform.
- Visually maps traffic flow in an interactive map to help identify traffic bottlenecks and any downstream effects.
Verdict: Datadog Network Performance Monitoring solution is easy to use. You can see metrics like volume and retransmit without writing queries. You can use it for a cloud-based or hybrid network.
Best for Small, Medium, and Large businesses and single users.
Obkio Pricing: Obkio offers a free 14-day trial of all premium features and a free demo upon request. Once the trial has ended, you can continue using the free plan or upgrade to a paid plan, which starts at $29/ month.
Obkio is a simple network performance monitoring SaaS solution that empowers users to continuously monitor their network performance to improve the end-user experience.
- Deploys in minutes.
- Continuous monitoring using monitoring Agents.
- Troubleshoot intermittent performance issues.
- Exchange of Synthetic Traffic to measure performance.
- Monitoring from the End-User perspective.
- Decentralized monitoring between pairs of agents in different locations.
- Real-time network performance updates every 500ms.
- Historical performance to troubleshoot past issues.
- Automatic Speed Tests to assess network health.
- User Quality of Experience (QoE) measured every minute.
#5) ManageEngine OpManager
ManageEngine OpManager is a solution that facilitates efficient and hassle-free network monitoring and network management.
OpManager checks for health, availability, and performance of networking devices like switches, routers, interfaces, servers, Microsoft Hyper-V, Citrix XenServers, VMware servers, Nutanix devices, storage devices, and other networking hardware.
With Ping, traceroute, switch port mapping, real-time graphs, AI and ML-based reports, automation, usage forecasts, and more, OpManager leaves no stone unturned while monitoring an organization’s entire network infrastructure.
Moreover, OpManager’s custom dashboard helps you look at all critical network metrics in one place without having to shift between multiple screens. This provides in-depth visibility and complete control to get rid of all network-related issues with ease.
OpManager empowers network and IT admins to simultaneously perform multiple operations, beyond plain network monitoring, such as Bandwidth analysis, Virtual Machine (VM) monitoring, Configuration management, Firewall management, Storage Monitoring, IP Address Management (IPAM), and Switch Port management (SPM).
#6) Site24x7 Network Monitoring
Best for small, medium, and large businesses, and DevOps.
Site24x7 Pricing: The price is based on the number of network interfaces monitored. The Starter pack is priced at $9 per month and it’s further cheaper when you scale up.
Site24x7 is a full-stack monitoring solution that empowers IT operations and DevOps with AI-powered performance monitoring and cloud spend optimization.
Its broad capabilities help quickly troubleshoot problems with websites, end-user experience, applications, servers, public clouds, and network infrastructure. Site24x7 is a cloud offering from Zoho Corporation.
- Automatic discovery of all the devices presents within a provided IP range or a whole network.
- Custom SNMP monitoring to monitor any vendor or metric of your choice.
- Automate discovery and mapping with Layer 2 maps and topology maps.
- Processed SNMP traps to receive instant alerts via email, SMS, push notification, and other third-party applications.
- NetFlow analysis to track traffic and bandwidth consumption.
- Out-of-the-box VPN and Cisco IPSLA based VoIP monitoring to support remote working needs.
- Health dashboard to identify top devices and interfaces, along with custom dashboard support.
- Custom reports, top N reports, and health trend report to identify trends over a stipulated period.
Best for everyone from beginners to experienced engineers.
Auvik Pricing: You can start for free with Auvik’s Network management and monitoring solution. It offers a free trial. Auvik follows a quote-based pricing model. It offers the solution with two pricing plans, Essentials & Performance. As per reviews, the price starts at $150 per month.
Auvik is a cloud-based solution for network management and monitoring. It is easy to use and helps you with preventing, detecting, and resolving issues faster. Its traffic analysis tools detect anomalies faster. It provides automated security and performance updates. It encrypts network data with AES-256.
- Auvik provides the features of automated network discovery, mapping, & inventory, and network monitoring & alerting.
- It has global dashboards.
- It has capabilities of configuration management and remote management.
- It supports an unlimited number of users, network sites, and endpoints.
Verdict: Auvik is an easy-to-use and cloud-based solution for network monitoring and management. It has an intuitive design. It can provide unlimited & full support and doesn’t charge any maintenance fees.
Atera Pricing: It offers an affordable and disruptive per-tech pricing model, allowing you to manage an unlimited number of devices and networks for a flat low rate.
You may opt-in for a flexible monthly subscription or a discounted annual subscription. You’ll have three different license types to choose from and can trial Atera’s full feature capabilities FREE for 30 days.
Atera is a cloud-based, Remote IT Management platform that provides a powerful and integrated solution, for MSPs, IT consultants, and IT departments. With Atera you can monitor unlimited devices and Networks for a flat low rate.
Additionally, Atera’s Network Discovery add-on instantly identifies unmanaged devices and opportunities. The ultimate all-in-one IT management tool suite, Atera Includes everything you need in one integrated solution.
Atera includes Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM), PSA, Network Discovery, Remote Access, Patch Management, Reporting, Script Library, Ticketing, Helpdesk, and so much more!
- Continuously scan networks and receive an overview of all connected devices (including network discovered devices).
- Real-time monitoring and proactively report performance for workstations, servers, SNMP, websites, etc.
- Customized alert settings and thresholds, and run automation profiles.
- Large shared library of SNMP device templates for easy SNMP monitoring.
- Automated reports that track and measure customers’ networks, assets, system health, and overall performance.
- 24/7 local Customer Support, 100% free.
Verdict: With Atera’s fixed pricing for unlimited devices and seamlessly integrated solution, Atera is a top choice Network Monitoring software for MSPs and IT professionals. Try 100% risk-free, no credit card required, and gain access to all Atera has to offer.
#9) PRTG Network Monitor
Best for Small, Medium, and Large businesses.
PRTG Network Monitor Pricing: Pricing is based on the license size. It is free up to 100 sensors. The below table will show you the details of the various pricing plans.
|PRTG 500||PRTG 1000||PRTG 2500||PRTG 5000||PRTG XL1||PRTG XL5|
|Starts from $1600||Starts from $2850||Starts from $5950||Starts from $10500||Starts from $14500||Starts from $60000|
With both the XL plans, you will get unlimited sensors. The number of sensors will change according to the pricing plan.
PRTG provides the network monitoring solution that can monitor your complete infrastructure including LAN, WAN, Cloud Services, Application Monitoring, etc. It provides a map designer to create a dashboard and integrates the network components as per your requirement. It has the capabilities for distributed monitoring.
- For alerting, it has 10 built-in technologies like email, pushes, and play alarm audio files.
- It provides fully featured web interfaces for desktop, iOS, and Android devices.
- For failover tolerant monitoring, every license will come a with single failover.
- It will provide in-depth reporting. Reports can be scheduled or run on-demand.
- The tool will allow you to export the reports in PDF, HTML, XML, or CSV files.
Verdict: PRTG Network Monitor has a desktop as well as Mobile App. It has the features of distributed monitoring, cluster failover solution, and reporting.
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Best for Small, Medium, and Large businesses.
Price: Nagios will cost you $1995 for a single license of Network Analyzer.
It offers solutions as Network Monitoring Software, Network Traffic Monitoring, and Network Analyzer. Nagios Network Analyzer comes with features like a comprehensive dashboard, advanced visualizations, custom application monitoring, automated alerts, specialized views, and advanced user management.
- It can monitor the availability of nodes and their uptime.
- It can also watch on the response time of every node.
- It provides reports and visual representations.
- It performs network monitoring for issues like crashed servers, etc.
- Network Monitoring Software supports Microsoft, VMWare, and Linux.
Verdict: Nagios provides open-source network monitoring tools. It performs network monitoring for overloading by data links, network connections, routers monitoring, switches, etc.
Best for Small, Medium, and Large businesses.
Price: It is free and open-source software.
Zabbix provides open-source network monitoring services for network, server, cloud, application, and services. It has features of advanced problem detection and intelligent alerting & remediation. It offers its solutions for various industries like aerospace, retail, government, etc.
- Data gathering will be flexible and extendable.
- It can auto-detect network devices and device configuration changes.
- It provides a variety of options for notifications.
- It will allow you to build flexible escalation scenarios.
Verdict: Zabbix has features for metric collection, problem detection, notifications, APIs, and distributed monitoring. It makes use of various metric collection methods and protocols like SNMP, IPMI, etc.
Best for Small, Medium, and Large businesses.
Price: LogicMonitor offers a free trial. It has three plans for standard pricing i.e. Starter ($15 per device per month. It starts at 50 devices), Pro ($18 per device per month. It starts at 100 devices), and Enterprise ($20 per device per month. It starts at 200 devices).
For service provider pricing, there are two plans i.e. SP Pro ($13 per device per month) and SP Enterprise ($15 per device per month). Both of these plans start at 250 devices.
LogicMonitor provides a monitoring solution with deployment options of on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructure. It monitors the temperature, CPU, Fan, memory, and other hardware.
- It can automatically discover all network devices and interfaces.
- It provides wireless access-point monitoring.
- For interface metrics, it can provide throughput, packet & error rates, utilization, etc.
- It has features of BGS sessions and OSPF adjacency tracking.
Verdict: LogicMonitor provides the cloud-based platform for network monitoring. It has features of fast deployment, alert routing, system log and event monitoring with functionalities for performance monitoring and tracking.
Best for Small, Medium, and large businesses.
Price: There are four plans i.e. Starter, Basic, Premium, and Enterprise. You can get a quote for their pricing details. Icinga as a service can be used for free for 30 days.
Icinga will do performance and availability monitoring. It can perform direct monitoring and also support SNMP. It has features for alerts and provides the relevant data. It provides On-Premises deployment. It can monitor any host and application.
- Icinga modules will allow you to extend your monitoring environment. It will allow you to build a tailored solution.
- It can be integrated with the VMware environment.
- It has a certificate monitoring module that will perform automatic scanning of the network for SSL certificates.
- Icinga Business Process Modelling will give you a combined view for your existing data and will build a top-level view.
Verdict: Icinga performs the monitoring activities for performance and availability. It has the capability to monitor the entire data center and clouds.
Best for small and medium businesses.
Price: Spiceworks has different plans i.e. Individual Plan, Team Plan, Enterprise Plan, and Custom Plan. All plans are completely free forever.
It provides network monitoring software which can provide real-time alerts and status for the devices. It works best for companies that need to monitor less than 25 devices. It has features like customizable notification and adjustable alerts.
- Customizable notifications.
- It provides free support online, and through phone or chat.
- Simple and easy to install and setup.
- It checks the IP-enabled devices to be online and responding.
- Alerts are adjustable.
Verdict: Spiceworks offers a completely free network monitoring software. It supports Windows, Mac, Linux, and UNIX devices for discovery. However, there is a limitation to run it from a Windows computer only.
Website: Spiceworks Network Monitoring
#15) WhatsUp Gold
Best for Small, medium, and large businesses.
Price: WhatsUp Gold has three editions i.e. Premium annual Subscription, Premium License, and Total Plus. You can get a quote for any of this as per your monitoring requirements. For professional services, there are four plans i.e. Basic ($500), Bronze ($1800), Silver ($2700), and Gold ($3600).
WhatsUp Gold will give you visibility over the status and performance of applications, network devices, and servers. It can be deployed on-premises or in the cloud. You will be able to view the network status from your iOS or Android devices. It provides services for the Windows platform.
- It will provide you a detailed interactive map of the complete networked infrastructure.
- It will allow you to monitor and map everything like virtual machines, wireless controllers, servers, traffic flows, etc.
- It provides customizable maps, alerts, and dashboards.
Verdict: WhatsUp Gold will give you visibility on the Hyper-V & VMware environments, network performance, AWS & Azure cloud environments, bandwidth consumption, and the performance of wireless networks.
Website: WhatsUp Gold
Best for Small, Medium, and Large businesses.
Pricing: Pricing is adjusted according to the chosen modules and infrastructure size.
NetCrunch by AdRem Software is a system that delivers comprehensive monitoring through Extensive(agent-less) Monitoring, Flexible Visualization, Alerting, and Policy-based configuration. It allows you to monitor every device in your IT infrastructure from Servers to Printers, Temperature sensors, and Cameras.
NetCrunch can identify, configure, and begin monitoring your network’s devices out of the box. Baseline thresholds and range triggers learn your network and alert you to unexpected changes with over 330 Monitoring Packs, Services, and Sensors.
NetCrunch is made from nine feature modules suited to specific infrastructure needs.
We have reviewed and compared the top network monitoring tools in this article. PRTG Network Monitor is for your complete infrastructure and it has capabilities for distributed monitoring.
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SolarWinds Network Performance Monitor will reduce network outages and improve performance. ManageEngine OpManager will perform continuous monitoring and give you in-depth visibility.
Nagios is an open-source network monitoring solution that can monitor the network for issues like crashed servers. Zabbix is a completely free and open-source network monitoring software. It is suitable for any business size. LogicMonitor is a cloud-based monitoring platform with features like fast deployment and event monitoring.
Icinga can monitor any host and application. It provides on-premises deployment. Spiceworks is a completely free network monitoring software that provides real-time updates on servers, switches, and IP devices. It is best for small and medium-sized businesses.
Hope this article will help you in selecting the right Network Monitoring Tool for your business.