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North American Network Operators Group

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Re: Network Operations "Metrics"

  • From: Alan Hannan
  • Date: Wed Feb 05 11:08:57 2003

> What metrics are used to measure networks and network
> operators?

  Peering and Transit Cost
  Peering and Transit Cost / bit

  Change Management Practices and Successes
  Ave Uptime/Device by Type
  Ave # Trouble Tickets / Time
  Customer Turnups/Month
  Customer Call hold times and call lengths

  Peering BW 
  Peering Utilization
  Average Backbone Circuit Utilization
  Peak Backbone Circuit Utilization [maybe P95 of circuits, or top 20 busy]

  Packet Loss and Latency within network
  Packet Loss and Latency outside of network on Internet

  Devices managed
  # of employees required
  Ave # of employees / device
  Capex $$ / POP
  Capex $$ / bit or bps
  dialup holdtimes
  Ave Packet Size

  It's interesting to note that two schools of thought exist on defining
  the denominator in many cases - rate (bps) and volume (TB/month).

> What "micro" measurements (the equivalent of tracking travel
> expenses or cost-of-sales to ensure overall profitability)  
> are used to ensure good macro-level (up-time, network 
> reliability, application performance, happy customers)?

  Specific instances of some of above.
> What systems/processes do you use to track all of this 
> information, and associate it to overall business success?

  Although folks would love to throw money at vendor XYZ to
  produce SAS-like reports w/ a big dial, I don't believe such
  a tool exists.

  At the end of the day, the formula about making a profit
  without too many upset customers and no financial chicanery
  is the simplest.

  In terms of greater geo-telco-politics, a particular engineering
  group or operations group may pick out 2-10 metrics above and use
  those to justify certain things.

  The vast majority of the metrics above can be gotten from
  simple ping scripts and snmp query scripts stuffing data into
  databases, and running DB reports.

  A trouble ticket system such as remedy or RT2 or others can
  also serve as a workflow system and provide useful statistics.

  "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."
	- Benjamin Disraeli


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