Switch Port References


Switch Port References

(January 9th, 2018)


Activating switches (i.e., giving Viakoo Agents read community strings for your camera network switches) has numerous benefits beyond just monitoring these devices. Viakoo will collect configuration and performance information on the overall switch as well as each port. A switch failure that takes a block of cameras offline, can then be determined as the root cause, generating a single ticket instead of numerous tickets associated with each down device.

However, activating switches not only helps to diagnose problems, it also allows Viakoo to be a useful reference in servicing your infrastructure in two ways:

  1. For any given switch, view all its ports with device connections.
  2. For any camera, you can quickly determine which switch and switch port it is connected to.
  3. For a collection of switches, which ports have devices connected to them and what are they and which ones do not using Switch Port Report.

Switch Port References in Switch Overviews

For many users, knowing which switch and switch-port a camera is connected to is useful in supporting their infrastructure.  To view switch ports for a single switch, navigate to the switch’s Overview display by clicking on the device in a switch table from the Details tab.

For users who have configured in their smart switches, the switch port information for connected ports will be along the right side of the Switch Overview.

There you  will find a list of ports which are directly or indirectly connected to other devices. This is a handy way of understanding what devices (and at which port) are connected to the given switch.

Switch Port References in Camera Overviews

Additionally, switch-ports are also part of the Camera Overview display. In Camera Overviews,  you will see a list of switches and switch ports that are along the path from the camera to its associated recorder. In general, the list is sorted with the port closest to the camera at the top of the list and those further from the camera lower down on the list.

The implication in the above example is that the camera “Hallway Ceiling” is connected to switch “FreezerPOE” at port “e19”.  Additionally, the path from the recording server DNG1020 is through switch “Corporate Cameras” then switch “int3560”, then switch “FreezerPOE”.

Some things to note:

The information includes all switches configured in Viakoo, that have ability to access the camera through the network topology. Moreover, if the network topology is not an acyclic graph, you may see some switches with multiple paths to the camera and the list sorting may not be completely accurate.

Finally, this works best if you have included the edge switches (i.e., the ones connected to the camera) into the Viakoo configuration. If the edge switches are unmanaged, you may see the top-most port has more than one device connected to it. The implication is that top-most port is actually connected to the edge switch and not the device directly.

Switch-Port Device Reports

For some situations, users would like a full reference report or spreadsheet of all their switches, their ports and what those ports are connected to. If given switch credentials, Viakoo can be a way of automatically generating this information.

To get a report of all switches and their related ports, go to the Reports tab and select “Device Report” and then choose “Switch-Ports” for your device report. Then click “Run Report”.

This will open a fresh browser tab to generate a report that will list all the ports of all the switches for the given context.

Ports that are not connected to anything will be listed with their simple name as provided by SNMP data from your switch. Switch ports that are actually connected to something will have their name listed as follows:

  Port ‘<port name>’ - <device connected name> (<device ip address>)

Switch ports that are connected to another switch will have their name listed as follows:

  Port ‘<port name>’ - <device connected name> (<device ip address>)  and <n> more …

The device name displayed is just one of several devices that are visible down that network path connected to this port. ‘n’ will be a number of additional devices that are also reachable down this path.

Switch-Ports Device Reports, like other device reports can be exported to CSV files to then be manipulated by your preferred spreadsheet programs.

Note, depending on how many switches you have and how many ports are available on each one, this can be quite large. It is best to do this at a site-level.

Useful References

For information on adding switches to your configuration, refer to Setting Up Switches.

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