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Network configuration management (NCM) is a broad term for the organization and management of a computer network. All sorts of networks, including local area networks, wireless networks and virtual networks all need elements of maintenance, modification, repair and general monitoring. Network configuration management involves collecting different information about hardware devices, software programs and other elements of the network in order to support administration and troubleshooting.
Network configuration management tools help administrators to adapt more quickly to emergencies or to make maintenance and repair processes more efficient. This means strengthening security and building more versatility into networks in order to work against challenges like potential downtime and errors within a system. A lot of the specifics of network configuration management have to do with the network setup, for example, where an application-aware network or other intelligent network may need additional sophisticated network configuration management tools.
Companies like IBM and Cisco offer particular network configuration management tools that will help to provide information on device hardware, and changes to hardware or software that may change network functionality. Best practices around configuration management involve the proper deployment of resources, the manipulation of IT business processes, and issues like versatility and scalability for end-user support.