Shared network and switched network are two common network environments today, before install Colasoft Capsa, you should first know about the topology of your network.
- Shared network
A shared network is also known as hubbed network which is connected with a hub.
Hubs are commonly used to connect segments of a LAN. When a packet arrives at one port, it is copied to the other ports so that all segments of the LAN can see all packets. A passive hub serves simply as a conduit for the data, enabling it to go from one device (or segment) to another. So-called intelligent hubs include additional features that enable an administrator to monitor the traffic passing through the hub and to configure each port in the hub. Intelligent hubs are also called manageable hubs. A third type of hub, called a switching hub, actually reads the destination address of each packet and then forwards the packet to the correct port.
With a shared environment, Colasoft Capsa can be installed on any host in LAN. The entire network data transmitted through the Hub will be captured, including the communication between any two hosts in LAN.
Topology illustration 1:
- Switched network
Switch is a network device working on the Data Link Layer of OSI. Switch can learn the physical addresses and save these
addresses in its ARP table. When a packet is sent to
switch, switch will check the packet’s destination
address from its ARP table and then send the packet to the corresponding port.
- Monitoring a network segment
In the case when you only need to monitor the traffic in a network segment (e.g. Finance department, Sales department, etc.), you can connect the server on which Colasoft Capsa is installed and the network segment with a exchange facility. The exchange facility can be hub, switch or proxy server.
Topology illustration 5:
Note: Commonly management switches have the function of port mirroring (spanning);
however, the port mirroring configuration of one brand’s switch may
differ from others, please refer to the documentation that comes with
your switch for information on the availability of this feature and
the configuration instructions. For the information about management switches, please visit the "Switch Management" page.