Network Diagram

Introduced in 8.3

Updated in 8.5

As soon as you have audited a network segment, you can view all discovered network nodes (computers, virtual machines, Chromebooks, network devices) with relationships that exist between them on a network diagram.

Creating network diagrams

Alloy Discovery creates network diagrams per Site.

To create a network diagram:

  1. From under the Sites section in the Sidebar, navigate to the desired Site and click Network Diagram.

  2. Click Create Network Map at the bottom of the workspace.

NOTE: To delete the network diagram, in the Sidebar, right-click Network Diagram and select Delete this Diagram from the pop-up menu.

Network Diagram elements

The network diagram consists of network nodes and connections.

  • Network Nodes - computers, Chromebooks, virtual machines and network devices (mobiles, printers, IP cameras, etc.). Each network node is marked with an icon and a name.

    NOTE: If a node is displayed as a question mark with an IP address, it means that the node has not been yet identified. You can audit a single Network Node and reclassify it. For details see Auditing a Single Computer and Reclassify Multiple Nodes.

    NOTE: Some nodes (hubs, logical switches, virtual hubs) are displayed as "no name" switches. These network devices cannot be discovered and therefore are not listed in the Network Devices grid.

  • Connections - lines that visualize physical and logical links between nodes. By default, Alloy Discovery has two types of system connections: Network connections and Hosted Virtual Machines connections. The system connections are generated on the network diagram automatically. If you want to show a logical connection between nodes on your diagram, you can draw a custom link.

Hiding network nodes

You may need to hide some nodes from the diagram to show only the related nodes that are relevant for your needs. Depending on their location, you can specify which nodes to hide, or specify which nodes to remain on the diagram and hide the rest of themes.

To hide nodes from the diagram:

  1. Select the nodes to hide or to remain. Use the Pointer tool on the Module menu and standard (press SHIFT to select multiple nodes).

  2. Right-click the selected area and choose the desired option from the pop-up menu: Hide Selected Nodes or Hide Unselected Nodes.

    • To hide the selected nodes, click Hide Selected Nodes.

    • To hide all nodes except the selected ones, click Hide Unselected Nodes.

NOTE: Nodes are hidden with their connections.

To unhide nodes:

  1. On the right side bar, under Display Settings, select the Show Hidden Items check box. Hidden nodes appear dimmed.

  2. Select which hidden nodes to show, right-click the selected area, and select Show Selected Nodes from the pop-up menu.

Viewing and customizing connections

The Connections section of the right-side bar allows you to choose which types of connection you want to be displayed.

  • Hosted Virtual Machines - shows connections to virtual machines running on discovered nodes.

  • Network Connections - shows network connections between nodes.

  • Custom Link - shows custom connections.

To customize a connection label:

  • Click the connection to select it, and type in a new label.

NOTE: To roll back to the default label name, right-click the connection and select Restore Label from the pop-up menu.

To add a custom connection between two nodes:

  1. Click Custom Link and hover over the first node to highlight the connection point.

  2. Click and drag until a connection point is found on the second node.

  3. Release the connection. A connection is added.

NOTE: To create a new type of custom connection, use the Settings App. For details see Configuring Network Diagram Connector Types.

Updating the diagram with the latest data

When the audit data is updated, the Update button in the upper right corner becomes active, allowing you to update the network diagram with newly received data.

To update a network diagram:

  • To update the diagram with the latest audit data, click Update on the Module menu.

  • To roll back the update, click Cancel.

Exporting network diagrams

You can export network diagrams to Microsoft Visio VSDX or Adobe PDF files.

To export a diagram:

  • Click Export on the Module menu and select the desired format.

Using network diagrams for impact analysis

For example, you have a request from the Service Desk. They want to know what is affected when the Switch_A goes down.

To analyze and visualize the requested information, follow the steps below.

  1. Audit the site and create the network diagram.

  2. Select the Switch_A node with dependent nodes:

    On the network diagram, right-click the node and choose Select Dependencies from the pop-up menu (if you want to include hosted virtual machines, repeat the operation). All nodes that have network connections with the switch will be selected. As a result, you can see the nodes that affect the Switch_A (if any) and nodes that are affected by the chosen switch.

  3. Sometimes you may want to visualize the logical dependence between the nodes that are not network connected to each other.

    For example, you have a database server with a network connection with the Switch_A, and client computers that access the database not directly connected to the Switch_A. However, in case of the Switch_A failure, these computers will also be affected. So, you may want to add this dependence to the network diagram.

    To add DB Connections between the database server node and client's nodes:

    1. Create a new type of connection in the Settings App. For details see Configuring Network Diagram Connector Types.

    2. Draw connections between the database server node and client nodes. For details, see To add a connection.

  4. Hide redundant information about other network nodes (using Hide Unselected Nodes action, see To hide a node).

  5. Hide redundant information about nodes that are connected to the Switch_A, affect the switch but are not dependent on it.

    Select the chosen node (or nodes), using the Pointer tool on the Module menu. Right-click the node and select the Hide Selected Nodes option from the pop-up menu.

  6. Arrange the nodes on the diagram in the desired order.

    • To select (move) nodes on the diagram and to move the diagram view vertically (horizontally), use the Pointer and Pan tools from the Module menu.

    • To change the diagram layout, in the right-side bar, select the desired layout in the Layouts section.

  7. Save the edited network diagram.

  8. Print out the diagram or export it to an external file to share it with the support team.

    • To print the diagram, select File > Print from the main menu.

    • To export the diagram, click Export button on the Main menu and select the desired format.

Network diagram controls and functions