A former Google engineer is using his knowledge of network monitoring to help companies keep tabs on network devices like switches, routers, and firewalls. Vadim Kurland, who was the No. 5 employee in Google’s network operations team back in 2002, is now founder of a three-year-old company named HappyGears.net, which Kurland says has attracted some high-profile customers, including DNA testing and analysis firm 23 and Me.
While at Google, Kurland was responsible for developing network automation and monitoring applications to help manage Google’s network. That expertise has become valuable for his new company.
HappyGears.net has developed a network monitoring and topology mapping software, called NetSpyGlass, which has an embedded programming language for data analytics and alerts. It lets companies monitor thousands of devices.
“Every network needs to know the same things about the devices – whether it is up or down. What size is it? How much traffic is it handling?” Kurland says.
And while there are other tools available that monitor devices from competitors like HPE and others, Kurland says that those tools have to be reconfigured every time a company adds another switch to a data center. To accommodate those changes, most companies then hire a professional services firm to reconfigure all the devices. “Traditional tools will do the job,” Kurland says “But you have to configure it. And when you add another switch with 500 ports you have to edit the system.”
For growing companies these re-configurations can be labor intensive and use critical resources. Because of the time constraints and cost, many companies compromise on the re-configuring of their devices and end up not monitoring things as closely as they should. That’s where NetSpyGlass comes in handy. “We have developed a tool that can configure itself and do this with 80 percent of what people want to do out of the box,” Kurland says.
23 and Me has been using NetSpyGlass software since the beginning of the year and according to Igor Sviridov, network operations manager at the company, it is providing much better visibility into the network than similar tools. “The main benefit for us is the amount of visibility it provides with very little effort,” Sviridov says.
23 and Me uses the software to keep tabs on its switches, routers and firewalls. Sviridov says the company has about 50 devices that it currently monitors.
Sviridov adds that the company has various generations of switching and routing gear, some of which are older than others. Typically this requires extra integration, but with NetSpyGlass the company can get visibility into most of its network equipment without manual configuration.
But why name the company HappyGears? Kurland says it’s simple — it’s a memorable name.