by November 17, 2001 0 comments

Here’s a very useful tool to keep track of your network’s performance, and troubleshoot problems related to specific nodes, protocols, and services. It can also be useful in tightening up your networks’ security, as you can view all packets flowing across your network.

While using EtherPeek is very simple, you need a good understanding of networking concepts and protocols to really make use of it. The accompanying help file is a good way to start using the utility as it not only gives information about the various menus in EtherPeek, but also gives an overview of packets, protocols, Ethernet headers, errors, etc. EtherPeek vendor’s website also offers some insights into using the product.


Price: $995 (if purchased from website)
Meant for: Network administrators
Features: Capture packets for all network segments, troubleshoot specific nodes on network, tighten up security.
Contact: Downloadable 30 day-demo from

The captured packets can be viewed in real time or saved and analyzed later. Once packets are captured, you can view information like the protocol, source, destination, size, time-stamp, and any plug-in info for each packet. You can further open each packet and view the raw data inside it. You can set filters to view a specific type of network traffic, and even set triggers and alerts for certain network conditions. You can also view the traffic from a specific node. This can be really useful in troubleshooting network problems. Another useful feature is that you can generate your own packets and inject them into your network to measure server response times.

EtherPeek also has a very powerful statistics menu, which can give you global information about your network, such as the active nodes on your network, the protocols being used and the percentage of overall traffic each generates, which nodes are communicating with which node, and much more.

EtherPeek also comes with some useful plug-in tools, known as iNetTools. These are Ping, Ping Scan, Name Lookup, Name Scan, DNS Lookup, and a Port Scan. All of these are useful in testing Internet and IP-based networks. Certain plug-ins get installed with EtherPeek. These do some pretty useful tasks such as identifying duplicate IP addresses on your network, a Napster plug-in, which identifies information on login, search and download packets on ports used by Napster. Another interesting plug-in is for informing of eight common Internet attacks.

EtherPeek can run on any Windows machine, be it Windows 9x, Me, NT, or 2000. You’ll need at least 64 MB RAM for 10 Mbps networks and 128 MB for 100 Mbps networks. Installation is quite easy, and you can have it up and running within minutes.

Overall, a great network utility, which, though expensive, can be very useful for network administrators.

Anil Chopra at PCQ Labs

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