SolarWinds IPAM 4.6
IPAM (IP Address Manager) and IPAT (IP Address Tracker) are two packages which will keep control of all your IP addresses. To let you into a secret, both utilities are fun to use, even if you don’t have a pressing need to manage your IP address space.
- Comparison of SolarWinds IPAM and IPAT
- IPAM's Subnet Calculator
- IPAM 4.6 Features
- How to Install SolarWinds IPAM 4.6
Firstly, remember that SolarWinds' IPAM has ALL the elements, whereas IPAT, the free IP Address Tracker, only contains the basic features. One factor that may sway you to install IPAM is that you already have other software in the ORION suite.
Assuming you are using IPAM, and not the IP Address Tracker, seek out the ‘Manage Subnets and IP Addresses’ tab. It’s incredible the way the software can organise the subnets, you can even create supernets by dragging and dropping the elements.
Study the IP4 and IP6 reports, which IPAM produces by default, or alternatively create your own. What I particularly liked was the Top 10 lists.
Perhaps you have spent longer than you realise tinkering with an Excel Spreadsheet to manage your IP addresses allocations. If so, it’s worth getting a copy of this IPAM software just to save time tracking which server has been been allocated to which IP address, or which building uses a particular subnet. Best of all, the subnet allocation wizard calculates the address ranges for you.
Schedule Automatic Scanning. Eliminate out-of-date information in your spreadsheet, and prevent manual IP configuration errors.
Monitor Multi-vendor DNS and DHCP servers. SolarWinds supply additional Polling engine support so that you can intergrate IPAM with Cisco, ISC (Internet Systems Consortium), BIND (Berkeley Internet Name Domain) and of course, Microsoft DNS and DHCP.
Integration with VMware vRealize ® Orchestrator™ (vRO). With this plug-in you get a collection of pre-built workflows; thanks to this SolarWinds API you can automate IP address management in VMware.
Improved user delegation. You can restrict IPAM users per location/departments; for example, the IT department for Asia may operate only with related subnets but they can't change anything in the European or USA IP address scope.
Active Monitoring of DHCP Address Leases. Get alerts for conflicting IP Addresses, or when there are no free addresses in a subnet.
Microsoft Server 2012 and 2016 DHCP Failover Support. SolarWinds give you the ability to monitor and manage your DHCP failover relationships from a single screen.
Guy’s Review of the IPAM Install
It’s a force of nature that whenever you want to achieve something complicated there will be set-backs on the journey of discovery. One of my secrets of learning is to build on success, and it is for this reason that I recommend you test the IP Address Tracker before moving on to its ‘Big Brother’ IPAM.
The killer feature of IPAM is integration with the rest of the SolarWinds suite, in particular linking with the Performance Monitor. Also, scanning subnets automatically is a real time-saver on big networks.
My first installation failed. The IPAM needs IIS, thus I had to get that web service working before I could install the more sophisticated SolarWinds IPAM. After some fiddling I got IPAM running smoothly and I was impressed with this utility. However, my old friend ‘Mad’ Mick, who is an SNMP expert wanted more. To be objective, if you are a relative newbie, such as me, then you will be impressed, whereas if you are a hard-hearted veteran such as Mike, then you may be critical because it does not read your mind.
What Mick complained of was that IPAM allowed him to create duplicate IP ranges (Silly Mick, Guy says). It also would not perform all the import and exports that Mick wanted.
I found the hardest part of the install was remembering where I downloaded the zip file! The rest was easy, I extracted the .msi files clicked on the licence agreement, and let the install wizard perform the setup.
After the install completes IPAM launches you are ready to begin. Should you need ‘find’ the application later look on the start menu, or if all else fails navigate to:
C:\Program Files (x86)\SolarWinds\
If necessary, you can tweak the payload for ping requests. It solves the problem of firewalls filtering large ICMP packets.
Set the value to:
<add key="PingSweepDhcpJob.Payload" value="custom payload value"/>
Summary: Review of SolarWinds IPAM 4.6
IPAM is the all singing all dancing version, while the IP Address Tracker is the free basic tool. Version 4.6 brings requested new features such as scheduling automatic scanning.
Full Reviews of the SolarWinds Licensed Family of Applications
Here are Guy’s comprehensive evaluations, comments and recommendations for SolarWinds licensed products. Each application offers a 30 day trial of a fully functional program, so check out the download links provided.