Network Monitor 3.3 has arrived!

Guest blog by Tawanda Sibanda, Lead Program Manager for Network Monitor

Ladies and gentlemen … the Microsoft Network monitor team is excited to announce the release of Network Monitor 3.3. A record 7 months after version 3.2 this is our quickest release ever, but also one of our most functionality-rich. We have added some innovative features that will simplify your network troubleshooting needs. As always, we have also continued to fix bugs and improve the product in those little but important ways.

Let’s take a quick tour of Network Monitor 3.3.

Where are the bits?

Network Monitor 3.3 is available here http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=983b941d-06cb-4658-b7f6-3088333d062f on Microsoft.com

Network Monitor 3.3 will also be offered as an optional feature package in the next few weeks via Microsoft Update if you have a previous version of Network Monitor 3.x installed. To check for updates, click on Help>Check for Updates from the product menu (versions 3.1 and higher) or visit the site http://update.microsoft.com/microsoftupdate

What’s New in Network Monitor 3.3

· Ability to capture WWAN (mobile broadband) and Tunnel traffic on Windows 7.

· Full Hyper-V support on Windows Server 2008

· Right-click-add-to-alias: Right-click a frame in the Frame Summary window with an IPv4, IPv6 or MAC address to add that address as a new alias. This is one of those little things that simplifies your work-flow.

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· Right-click-go-to-definition: Have you ever wondered where and how the protocols fields you see in the Frame Details are defined in our in-built parsers? Wonder no more. Introducing right-click-go-to-definition: right-click a field in the Frame Details window and select Go To Data Field Definition or Go To Data Type Definition to see where the field is defined in the NPL parsers.

· Autoscroll: Another one of those little, but priceless things … auto-scroll. See the most recent traffic as it comes in. In a live capture, click the AutoScroll button on the main toolbar to have the Frame Summary window automatically scroll down to display the most recent frames as they come in. Click Autoscroll again to freeze the view in its present location.

· Core Parser Set: We heard your concerns about our parsing performance, and created an optimized Core parser set that only contains 32 protocol parsers for network layer and transport protocols (e.g., Ethernet, IP, and TCP). This parser set can increase your parsing performance by up to 200% depending on the data you are viewing. To enable the Core parser set, go to Tools > Options from the main menu, and click on the Parser tab. Click on the Common folder and click the stubs button to load stub parsers for this folder. Do the same thing for the Windows folder. Your final set up should be as follows:

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· ETL Support: Network Monitor 3.3 can open and correlate information in ETL files generated by Network Tracing in Windows 7.

And now for the main event … two of our most exciting features that will revolutionize how you analyze your traces:

· Frame Commenting: Read all about this feature in our previous blog article. Briefly, Frame Commenting lets you attach comments to frames in a saved capture file. Select the Frame Comments tab in the lower-right window to add, view, edit, or delete comments. With this feature you can annotate a trace with your comments and observations and store that metadata directly with the capture file itself!

· Experts: Experts are stand-alone applications that analyze Network Monitor capture data. In Network Monitor 3.3 we provide a simple interface for registering experts with the product and invoking them on a saved capture file. We have made some initial experts available online at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=133950. Simply install the experts and run them directly from the UI on a capture file. Better yet, why not create your own expert! We provide a rich API that allows you to filter and parse capture data. We also have a sample SDK on the same experts portal to get you started on creating an installable expert that you can share with others. If you are interested in creating an expert we would love to hear from you. Leave a comment on the blog and Paul will get back to you.

Let us know what you think

We live for feedback, negative or positive. Go to http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=142458 and let your opinion be heard. The survey requires you to log on with your Windows Live ID.

Enjoy!

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Microsoft Network Monitor Team

Left->Right: Xumin Sun, Jin Feng, Darren Fisher, Jim Huang, Ralph Case, Michael Hawker, Paul Long, Saurabh Verma, Ashish Panday, Dave MacDonald, Ning Yang, Fred Wurden, Kathy Snow, Xin Shen, cow, Gi youl Kim, Sean Spratt, Lin Zhong, Tawanda Sibanda