FCAPS is a network management framework created by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
FCAPS categorizes the working objectives of network management into five levels. The five levels are: fault-management (F), the configuration level (C), the accounting level (A), the performance level (P) and the security level (S).
I. At the fault management level, network problems are found and corrected. Potential future problems are identified and steps are taken to prevent them from occurring or recurring. With fault management, the network stays operational, and downtime is minimized.
II. At the configuration management level, network operation is monitored and controlled. Hardware and programming changes, including the addition of new equipment and programs, modification of existing systems, and removal of obsolete systems and programs, are coordinated. At the C level, inventory of equipment and programs is kept and updated regularly.
III. The accounting management level, which might also be called the allocation level, is devoted to distributing resources optimally and fairly among network subscribers. This makes the most effective use of the systems available, minimizing the cost of operation. The A level is also responsible for ensuring that users are billed appropriately.
IV. The performance management level is involved with managing the overall performance of the network. Throughput is maximized, network bottlenecks are avoided, and potential problems are identified. A major part of the effort is to identify which improvements will yield the greatest overall performance enhancement.
V. At the security management level, the network is protected against hackers, unauthorized users, and physical or electronic sabotage. The confidentiality of user information is maintained where necessary or warranted. Security systems also allow network administrators to control what each individual authorized user can (and cannot) do with the system.
• FCAPS is a network management framework created by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
• FCAPS categorizes the working objectives of network management into five levels. The five levels are: fault-management (F), the configuration-management (C), the accounting-management (A), the performance-management (P) and the security-management (S).
(1) Fault management :
• A fault is an event that has a negative significance.
• The goal of fault management is to recognize, isolate, correct and log faults that occur in the network.
• Furthermore, it uses trend analysis to predict errors so that the network is always available. This can be established by monitoring different things for abnormal behavior.
• When a fault or event occurs, a network component will often send a notification to the network operator using either a proprietary or open protocol such as SNMP to collect information about network devices
• In turn, the management station can be configured to make a network administrator aware of problems (by email, paging, or on-screen messages), allowing appropriate action to be taken. This notification is supposed to trigger manual or automatic activities. For example, the gathering of more data to identify the nature and severity of the problem or to bring backup equipment on-line.
• Fault logs are one input used to compile statistics to determine the provided service level of individual network elements, as well as sub-networks or the whole network.
• They are also used to determine apparently fragile network components that require further attention.
(2) Configuration management:
• The goals of configuration management include:
(1) to gather and store configurations from network devices (this can be done locally or remotely).
(2) to simplify the configuration of the device
(3) to track changes that are made to the configuration
(4) to configure ('provision') circuits or paths through non-switched networks
(5) to plan for future expansion and scaling
• Configuration management is concerned with monitoring system configuration information, and any changes that take place.
• This area is especially important, since many network issues arise as a direct result of changes made to configuration files, updated software versions, or changes to system hardware.
• A proper configuration management strategy involves tracking all changes made to network hardware and software. Examples include altering the running configuration of a device, updating the OS version of a router or switch, or adding a new modular interface card.
(3) Accounting management:
• The goal is to gather usage statistics for users.
• Accounting management is concerned with tracking network utilization information, such that individual users, departments, or business units can be appropriately billed or charged for accounting purposes.
• While this may not be applicable to all companies, in many larger organizations, the IT department is considered a cost center that accrues revenues according to resource utilization by individual departments or business units. For non-billed networks, "administration" replaces "accounting". The goals of administration are to administer the set of authorized users by establishing users, passwords, and permissions, and to administer the operations of the equipment such as by performing software backup and synchronization.
• Accounting is often referred to as billing management. Using the statistics, the users can be billed and usage quotas can be enforced. These can be disk usage, link utilization, CPU time, etc.
(4) Performance management :
• Performance management is focused on ensuring that network performance remains at acceptable levels.
• It enables the manager to prepare the network for the future, as well as to determine the efficiency of the current network, for example, in relation to the investments done to set it up. The network performance addresses the throughput, network response times, packet loss rates, link utilization, percentage utilization, error rates and so forth.
• This information is usually gathered through the implementation of an SNMP management system, either actively monitored, or configured to alert administrators when performance move above or below predefined thresholds.
• Actively monitoring current network performance is an important step in identifying problems before they occur, as part of a proactive network management strategy.
• By collecting and analysing performance data, the network health can be monitored.
• Trends can indicate capacity or reliability issues before they affect services. Also, performance thresholds can be set in order to trigger an alarm. The alarm would be handled by the normal fault management process . Alarms vary depending upon the severity of the problem.
• InfoVista, IBM Tivoli Netcool Proviso, Solarwinds are some software used for performance monitoring.
(5) Security management:
• The network is protected against hackers, unauthorized users, and physical or electronic sabotage.
• The confidentiality of user information is maintained where necessary or warranted.
• Security systems also allow network administrators to control what each individual authorized user can (and cannot) do with the system.
• Security management is not only concerned with ensuring that a network environment is secure, but also that gathered security-related information is analyzed regularly.