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NetScout Unveils Broad Strategy to Unify Network Performance Management for the Enterprise

July 15, 2002

nGenius To Solve Data and Tool Clutter Through New CDM Technology

WESTFORD, Mass., July 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- NetScout Systems (Nasdaq: NTCT) today announced a comprehensive strategy for expanding its nGenius(TM) Performance Management System to allow enterprises to consolidate their point performance management tools into a single architecture and solution. Despite the industry's best efforts to date, IT organizations are forced to use a multitude of different performance management tools for different traffic types (e.g., data, voice, Web content), for different data sources (e.g., routers, switches, probes), and for different management functions such as reporting, troubleshooting, monitoring, protocol analysis and service level management. Based on NetScout's patent- pending Common Data Model(TM) (CDM) architecture and technology, the strategy aims to reduce the data and tool clutter, leading to dramatically lowered total cost of ownership for network management.

Enterprises remain challenged by point performance management tools: Enterprises today are under pressure to improve overall IT efficiency, as well as to directly link IT decisions to business priorities. Current performance management solutions compromise these goals because they are not linked to the broader context of the network. Network managers have been limited to using separate tools from different vendors or application suites that consist of separate, loosely coupled applications that do not provide end-through-end visibility of the services being delivered. All of these shortcomings, in the face of mounting network size and complexity, lead to unsatisfactory service levels, inefficient resource utilization and lower productivity -- a poor ROI.

NetScout builds on its innovative technology to cut the clutter: NetScout's innovative, flow-based approach for integrating performance data across the networked infrastructure has long been used for simplifying user tasks by integrating traffic flow data from disparate network technologies such as Gigabit Ethernet, ATM, Frame Relay, and from Cisco devices as part of a partnership, into consistent analyses, views and reports. This approach was also central to the recently announced nGenius Performance Manager version 1.4, which, for the first time in the industry, combined the tasks of real-time monitoring, troubleshooting, protocol analysis and historical reporting into a single product. The strategy announced today uses NetScout's innovative technology, called Common Data Model (CDM), to significantly expand the scope of the nGenius architecture to include all key network data sources (e.g., active and passive response time agents, routers, intelligent switches, load balancers). Simultaneously, it integrates all key performance management tasks and links them to the context of the entire network and the business services being delivered. This approach enables capacity utilization, response time, availability, fault and other vital information to be analyzed, displayed, and reported in a consistent format and context-cutting down on the human effort necessary to interpret and act upon the information.

Customers welcome NetScout's direction: Wachovia Corporation, with more than $320 billion in assets, is the fourth largest bank in the country and is one of NetScout's largest customers. "Within Wachovia, we leverage technologies that allow us maximum control over our infrastructure. We need to make immediate decisions in our line of business, and the nGenius Performance Management System enhances the quality of information available for those decisions," said Peter Makohon, vice president, Network Services for Wachovia. "NetScout's strategy is on-target and helps us reach our goal of being a precise, yet responsive organization."

CDM direction is built on solid foundations: "The direction we have unveiled today takes a completely different approach to resolving data and tool clutter. Unlike other vendors, we are starting with the foundation of a common data model, one based on the application flow paradigm we have championed for many years." said Anil Singhal, president and CEO of NetScout Systems. "This technology gives us network-wide performance information necessary to consolidate all performance management functions across the infrastructure. With nGenius in place, our customers will realize enormous savings through reducing the human effort required for planning, monitoring, and troubleshooting their networks and through increasing network performance by optimizing the use of their existing infrastructure."

"NetScout's rich experience in monitoring application flows across the network for infrastructure optimization and performance troubleshooting provides a natural foundation for the larger concept of CDM," says Dennis Drogseth, vice president, Enterprise Management Associates. "CDM reflects one of the most critical requirements for next-generation management solutions -- the need to provide a more integrated and intelligent approach to infrastructure management. CDM is a bold stroke that will help to reshape the industry towards a more efficient, less cluttered environment for managing the delivery of business services across the network."

Implementation plans: NetScout intends to implement the CDM strategy over multiple releases of the nGenius system, consisting of both a performance management software application and probes. The first of these releases, comprising nGenius Performance Manager version 1.4 and NetScout's Probe Firmware version 5.2, is already shipping and is offering integrated real-time monitoring, historical reporting, capacity planning, troubleshooting and protocol analysis based on traffic information collected from probes, and LAN switches for voice, Web, and data traffic.

Over the next nine months traffic coverage will be extended to embrace storage area networks via new NetScout Probes, and data source support will expand to routers, flow-based switches, and load balancers through partnerships with infrastructure vendors. nGenius Performance Manager will be further extended by integrating NetScout's Capacity Planner and Application Service Level Manager functionality, by introducing new, intelligent performance alarms and by implementing a complete self-management capability. Subsequent releases will add more third party data sources, and will enhance user productivity through automating performance management tasks.

nGenius Alliance Program to complement new strategy: Complementing its product strategy announcement, NetScout simultaneously announced its nGenius Alliance Program to extend the scope and reach of nGenius by expanding the range of devices from which nGenius collects data to more third party devices, and by providing nGenius information to new application partners. The first component of the nGenius Alliance Program, called Technology Integration Partners (TIP), will help infrastructure partners to develop software to feed their performance information to nGenius using the CDM technology and to test the resulting integration.

"We are pleased to have NetScout as a solution partner and to join NetScout's nGenius Alliance Program," said Duncan Potter, vice president of Marketing for Extreme Networks. "By including support for our Ethernet switches in the nGenius Common Data Model architecture, our customers have access to real-time monitoring, base lining, reporting, and troubleshooting capabilities. This streamlines and simplifies the management of large networks for our common customers, and complements Extreme Networks' Large Enterprise/Service Provider OSS partner solution set."

About NetScout Systems, Inc.

NetScout Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq: NTCT) is a market leader and pioneer of integrated network performance management solutions for leading companies and service providers worldwide. NetScout serves the Global 5000 and counts among its customers Arvin Meritor, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Cable and Wireless, Cisco Systems, China Telecom, Fidelity Investments, Getronics, Goodyear Tire & Rubber, Nextel Communications, Samsung SDS, Siemens Health Services Corporation, StarBand Communications, Travelocity.com, Visa International, and Wachovia Bank. NetScout's solutions are offered through its nGenius(TM) Performance Management System, an integrated suite of advanced monitoring and reporting applications that draw on the rich performance data generated by NetScout's real-time, application-aware probes, advanced intelligent software agents and network devices. The nGenius System helps organizations increase their return on infrastructure investments by optimizing the performance of their network, applications and content. NetScout is headquartered in Westford, Massachusetts and has approximately 360 employees, with offices in North America, Europe and Asia. Further information on the company is available on the World Wide Web at http://www.netscout.com.

NetScout is a registered trademark, and the NetScout logo, nGenius, nGenius Performance Manager, nGenius Capacity Planner, nGenius Application Service Level Manager, nGenius Real-Time Monitor and nGenius Probe are trademarks of NetScout Systems, Inc.

     For Further Information:

     Peggy Flynn                   Dawn Sullivan or John Moran
     NetScout Systems              Schwartz Communications, Inc.
     (978) 614-4162                (781) 684-0770
     flynnp@netscout.com           netscout@schwartz-pr.com


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SOURCE NetScout Systems
Web site: http: //www.netscout.com
CONTACT: Peggy Flynn of NetScout Systems, +1-978-614-4162, flynnp@netscout.com; or Dawn Sullivan, or John Moran, both of Schwartz Communications, Inc. +1-781-684-0770, netscout@schwartz-pr.com

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