Network Mapping Software

What Does Network Mapping Software Mean?

Network mapping software refers to software and hardware devices that can be used to visually map a network’s physical interconnectivity and indicate different node relationships. It uses hardware devices with different network connection methods, such as switches, routers, computers and mobile devices.

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Techopedia Explains Network Mapping Software

Network mapping software uses methods like trace routing to locate connected devices. It sends special data packets – such as IP addresses, ports and connectivity protocols – that collect data from routers and switches and sends this information back to the mapping system. This helps network administrators (NA) identify network inefficiencies and bottlenecks and conduct root cause analyses of network problems.

Network mapping software may include different integrated mapping tools, open source or otherwise. One may be dedicated to network node discovery, while another may be concerned with the type of operating system (OS) and listening port employed by these nodes. Another tool may be used to visually construct the network map, while another monitors mapped node changes.

Full network mapping software systems vary according to the map’s visual presentation or how it can be manipulated. However, many alternative open source tools may be used to perform small network mapping tasks. Some allow users to include map notes or labels as well as add undiscoverable network items.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.