Raspberry Pi Powers NetBeez Network Monitors: Startup Profile - InformationWeek

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Raspberry Pi Powers NetBeez Network Monitors: Startup Profile

The latest installment in our ongoing series featuring notable startups looks at NetBeez, which makes network performance monitoring hardware.

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15 Hot Skill Sets For IT Pros In 2015
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NetBeez performs distributed network monitoring to help IT identify performance issues that could affect end users. The company, which targets organizations with multiple branch and remote offices or retail locations, sells a hardware agent that gets installed at each location.

The hardware agent, called a Beez, gets plugged into a switch or router. It monitors network availability and can perform a variety of tests to help administrators identify problems, including testing availability and reachability of Web resources such as Salesforce. The agent can check DNS and HTTP, and run Ping, Traceroute, and Iperf tests.

The tests provide simple but useful information that can be used to track network performance in real-time and historically, generate alerts, and identify (or eliminate) potential culprits when an end-user calls the help desk to complain that the network is slow.

Each NetBeez agent connects to a central management server, which IT uses to manage the agents and run tests. The server, which is available as a virtual machine or as an instance on AWS or Google Compute Engine, starts and stops tests, collects test data from the agents, and sends alerts. One management server can support up to 200 agents.

A dashboard gives administrators a variety of options for conducting tests and reviewing data, including real-time information and historical reports.

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The Beez hardware agents come in a variety of form factors. A version built on the Raspberry Pi platform supports FastEthernet. The company also offers two form factors that support Gigabit Ethernet, as well as a wireless version.

IT and network administrators have no shortage of monitoring options, including open-source projects such as Nagios; other startups like ThousandEyes; dedicated monitoring  vendors including SolarWinds and ScienceLogic; and extensive suites from HP, IBM, BMC, and other large vendors.

NetBeez doesn’t aim to replace these products. The company’s goal is to complement existing monitoring systems and offer an inexpensive option that provides essential information for each and every branch and remote office in an organization’s network.

The company wouldn’t disclose pricing specifics, but it did note that the cost per device is a few hundred dollars per year.

You can see a NetBeez presentation at Tech Field Day to get more details about the company and its products. And NetBeez is participating in InteropNet at Interop Las Vegas 2015. InteropNet is a purpose-built production network that provides connectivity for exhibitors and attendees at the conference.

Product: Beez

Principals: Stefano Gridelli, cofounder and CEO; Panickos Neophytou, cofounder and CTO; Panos Vouzis, cofounder and COO

DNA: Gridelli is a former network engineer who earned an MBA at Carnegie Mellon University. Neophytou has a PhD in computer science from the University of Pittsburgh; Vouzis has a PhD from Lehigh University, and developed parallel computing algorithms at Carnegie Mellon University.

Founded: 2013

Funding: $325,000 in seed funding

Investors: AlphaLab, Carnegie Mellon University’s Open Field Entrepreneurs Fund, Innovation Works, private investors

Headquarters: Pittsburgh, Pa.

Early Customers: Goodwill

Competition: ThousandEyes, SolarWinds, ScienceLogic

Pricing: Undisclosed

View previous installments of our startup series here:

Attend Interop Las Vegas, the leading independent technology conference and expo series designed to inspire, inform, and connect the world's IT community. In 2015, look for all new programs, networking opportunities, and classes that will help you set your organization’s IT action plan. It happens April 27 to May 1. Register with Discount Code MPOIWK for $200 off Total Access & Conference Passes.

Drew is formerly editor of Network Computing and currently director of content and community for Interop. View Full Bio
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