Advanced NPB feature deep dive


A growing number of vital applications and services need network data transmission in real-time, such as trading, banking, VOIP, VoLTE, video conferencing, SmartGrid, time-sensitive networking (audio/video). In order to monitor the operation of such applications and services, innovative organizations provide solutions for visibility architectures that integrate accurate timestamping.

While timestamps may be added to the packets as they arrive at the analysis tools’ network interface, access devices such as network TAPs, virtual TAPs, traffic aggregators and Network Packet Brokers (NPBs) that feed data to the tools are examples of efficient visibility designs. In a distributed design like this, it is vital for aggregation devices and NPBs to use timestamps so that timing analysis tools can be used effectively.

Cybersecurity: An IT department needs specific information on malicious activity. It is difficult to determine the chronology of events and address issues and the vulnerabilities that caused them without exact timestamps. Not only can you use this function to prevent and evaluate cyberattacks, but also to look at patterns and network latency.

Real-time applications: Many automated banking and financial systems rely on market data being delivered on time. Precise and accurate timestamping can improve customer experience, resulting in more revenue and lower attrition. Voice over IP (VoIP), Voice over LTE, Video Chat, and Virtual Meetings (VoLTE).

High-Frequency Trading (HFT): This is the domain of time-critical networks, where every nanosecond is crucial. Our packet brokers provide IEEE 1588 nanosecond precision timestamps for continuous monitoring of not just trade data latency but also network latency.

Timestamping implementation in X2-Series

X2-Series Network Packet Brokers provide PTPv2 timestamping for ERSPANv3 encapsulated traffic via the synchronization of an external PTPv2 master clock to the packet broker’s internal clock.

PTPv2 (IEEE 1588-2008) delivers higher accuracy and precision than NTP, which is why it is becoming more prevalent in data center equipment, and why we chose to implement it in our NPBs.

Related Products


XX-Series Network Traffic Aggregators

A Network Traffic Aggregator is an entry level Network Packet Broker (NPB) that optimizes traffic flow between TAP and SPAN connections and network monitoring, and security tools.


X2 & X3 Network Packet Brokers

A Network Packet Broker (NPB) is a device that optimizes traffic with a set of advanced traffic management features, such as Packet Slicing, SSL/TLS Decryption, Data Masking, GTP IP Filtering, Timestamping, Packet Deduplication, and more.

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