Master & Commander: True Network Observability for Simplicity and Action

March 11, 2024

Master & Commander: True Network Observability for Simplicity and Action

Our networks are the backbone of modern society. Whether we utilize them for healthcare, entertainment, communication, or commerce there are two essential elements. We must ensure our networks are highly performing and highly secure.

As we became even more reliant on networks, leaders such as Cisco innovated new technologies such as NetFlow to provide deeper insights into network traffic. NetFlow is quickly becoming a widely adopted technology and many vendors have added their own versions of NetFlow to remain competitive. A side effect of this competition is the creation of even more network complexity.

Today over 100 vendors provide network infrastructure with over 7,300 and growing basic and vendor specific fields. This complexity is compounded with the introduction of cloud services and our need to support more devices at a greater scale. As with many things, increased scale includes increased complexity. For us to provide the most performant and secure networks we require complete observability of all network traffic in real time.

Grasping the Essence of Network Observability

Network Observability refers to the ability to gain comprehensive insights into the behavior and performance of our networks. It encompasses the collection, analysis, and visualization of network data to provide engineers with a clear understanding of how their networks are functioning. Unfortunately strides made in network technology are not met with the same level of innovation in the tools we have to observe them.

Many legacy and open source tools fail to support complete observability. They are unable to scale to support large networks and their failure to collect, analyze, and visualize netflow traffic beyond basic, or in many cases limited vendor specific support. 

The Importance of Network Observability

For network engineers, having a high degree of observability is paramount to proactively identify and resolve issues before they escalate. By leveraging advanced telemetry data and analytics, engineers can gain deep insights into network traffic patterns, latency, packet loss, and application behavior. This level of visibility not only enables faster troubleshooting and root cause analysis but also empowers engineers to make informed decisions about network optimization and capacity planning.

ElastiFlow is uniquely positioned to provide network engineers with true network observability. We are the only solution that collects and normalizes over 7,300 fields into a single data set to reduce the complexity of multiple vendors. The platform is able to further enrich that data to provide additional business context around GeoIP, IP reputation, AS, applications and more from metadata enrichment.

The first step to true network observability is the simplification of network traffic collection. The second is the ability to quickly and easily troubleshoot large amounts of data to increase MTTR. ElastiFlow’s use of modern open data platforms transforms your network traffic into a powerful network analytics solution to maximizes explorabilty for a variety of use cases that ultimately lead to our ability to create performing and highly secure networks - see our product NetObserv.


In conclusion, the importance of network observability cannot be overstated in today's interconnected digital world. For network engineers tasked with ensuring the reliability and performance of their networks, having a robust observability solution is essential. Elastiflow is at the forefront of this paradigm shift, empowering engineers with the tools they need to effectively monitor, analyze, and optimize their networks. By embracing the principles of network observability organizations can stay ahead of potential issues, enhance security posture, and deliver seamless user experiences across their networks.

For more information, please reach out to our team for a more in-depth overview, or view a quick overview here.

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