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Cisco tools vs. Prognosis

What network management IP telephony vendors do a good job with Cisco Unified Call Managers? What are the pros and cons of using Integrated Research's Prognosis vs. Cisco's own tools?

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Cisco's CiscoWorks IP Communications Operations Manager is your best bet. It monitors the operational status of Cisco CallManager, Cisco CallManager Express, Cisco Unity, Cisco Unity Express and Cisco IP Contact Center, as well as gateways, routers and IP phones. If your solution is 1,000 phones or less, Cisco tools scale well. Plus since you are using Cisco for equipment as well, you have a natural advantage.

That said, there are third-party tools with significant strengths. You asked about Prognosis. Well, Prognosis is highly regarded as not only as a suite of IP telephony lifecycle management solutions, but it has built-in analytical intelligence that is somewhat more overarching that Cisco's bundled-in tools. Prognosis encompasses IP network-readiness assessment, pre-deployment testing and performance management on an ongoing basis.

It is generally accepted that Prognosis' strong point is its ability to provide TDM performance management by monitoring calls and call performance in real time. Yet this solution is both intricate and costly, and does not scale down well to installations with fewer than 1,500 phones.

This was first published in May 2006

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