APCON develops innovative, scalable technology solutions to enhance network monitoring, support IT traffic analysis, and streamline IT network management and security. APCON delivers state-of-the-art IT data aggregation, filtering, and network switching products, as well as leading-edge management software.

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Advanced Monitoring using Physical Layer Devices

Enterprise Network Aggregation and Filtering Switches


Many physical layer network devices are deployed when connecting a monitoring solution to a network. They may be called network taps, passive taps, physical layer switch, intelligent network monitoring switch, monitoring switch, aggregation switch, physical layer switch, filtering switch and network packet broker.


The monitoring solutions such as protocol analyzers, intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, or application monitor have one thing in common, and that is the tool must look at packet information.




A comprehensive and effective advanced network monitoring service program in a modern enterprise data center involves complex and subtle understanding of the nature of Ethernet networks. Network engineers must be sensitive to issues of data security, application performance, and business requirements. To achieve 100% network visibility and direct the right data to the right tool, advanced monitoring switches offer features such as packet aggregation and filtering, packet slicing and de-duplication, data rate conversion and load balancing. These features are not widely understood, even among many networking professionals.




Intelligent Network Monitoring


In the standard network monitoring paradigm, each monitoring point in the network is associated with a specific analysis, intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, or recording tool. In many cases, there is no specifically assigned tool and a portable analyzer is moved between monitoring ports for temporary use.


Intelligent Network Monitoring involves many advanced monitoring features developed to support 100% network visibility:


Packet aggregation is simply the merging of multiple data streams from SPANs and Taps, creating a single unified data stream that can be routed to a monitoring tool. APCON IntellaFlex blades support flexible any-to-any packet aggregation for increased monitoring tool efficiency.


Packet slicing and packet de-duplication are designed to clean up aggregated data streams and reduce the volume of data delivered to a given monitoring tool. In many cases only the packet header is analyzed, so packet slicing removes the packet payload, delivering only the required data. Packet de-duplication removes duplicate copies of packets that are generated by SPAN and Tap data sources.


Time stamping enables network engineers to precisely measure network latency on a packet-by-packet basis. Latency-sensitive services such as high-speed stock trading, VoIP, and video streaming all require a network monitoring system that can accurately measure latency.


Data rate conversion, filtering, and load balancing allow you to monitor 10G links with less expensive 1G tools. By filtering out irrelevant packets, changing the data rate, and dividing a high-bandwidth data stream among several similar tools, equipment purchases may be delayed or eliminated.


Advanced Monitoring Services


By aggregating data streams from across your network and routing filtered output streams to your tools, you can achieve maximum utility from your existing tool set.


Advanced network monitoring services such as packet slicing, packet de-duplication, data rate conversion, and load balancing allow you to save capital expenses such as expensive 10G tools. By reducing the volume of data to just the information needed for each tool, you can monitor new 10G links with existing 1G appliances.


Application of TAP's and Monitoring Switches


Packet Aggregation

  • Merge many data input sources
  • Multicast the merged stream to output ports
  • Apply egress filters to customize each data stream
  • Reduce packet size with packet slicing
  • Remove duplicate copies of packets
  • Direct a custom filtered stream to each tool
  • Monitor your network with fewer tools


  • ApconTap works seamlessly with APCON’s IntellaPatch line of Intelligent Data Traffic Management switches
  • Allows network managers to monitor all traffic for complete network visibility
  • Passive Taps deliver 100-percent traffic visibility
  • Network taps deliver layer 1 and 2 errors for comprehensive troubleshooting

Monitoring Virtualized Environments

  • Preserve the existing VM environment
  • Use existing tools to monitor physical and virtual networks
  • Increase network security, performance and tool utilization

Enhanced Network Security

  • Monitor traffic at every point in your network
  • Route to tools as needed
  • Filter packets to maximize efficiency