Observer GigaStor : Gen3 Capture Card : Software configuration
   
Software configuration
 
Page Contents
How to view the capture card properties
How to create virtual adapters
How to remove duplicate packets in real time
How to assign physical ports to probe instances
How to change the monitored network adapter
Created: 2016-08-03
The Gen3 capture card hardware unlocks certain features in Observer/GigaStor. You can configure and use these settings inside the Observer application and Windows Device Manager.
How to view the capture card properties
Revised: 2016-09-12
Viewing the Gen3 capture card properties allows you to verify what you think is happening at the card level (such as SFP activity, link speed, auto-negotiation) is actually happening. Additionally, configuration changes to the card can be made here.
Tip! These settings can be viewed remotely using Windows RDP or an equivalent remote desktop application. You might find this useful for checking SFP and link states when physical access to the GigaStor is not feasible.
Some benefits of viewing the Gen3 capture card properties include:
Verifying if an SFP...
is present and in which port.
is active or idle.
is operating at the speed you expect.
Verifying the board’s...
hardware acceleration (HA) status.
auto-negotiation settings per port.
ID string that also contains the firmware version.
PCIe lane speed1.
power range (good /bad)
operating temperature (good/bad)
Seeing configurable options for...
per port auto-negotiation.
Tip! Be sure to disable auto-negotiation for TAP connections, and enable auto-negotiation for SPAN connections.
To view the Gen3 capture card properties:
1. In your version of Windows, open Device Manager.
2. In the tree on the right, expand Viavi Solutions Inc. Capture Adapters.
3. Right-click the capture card entry and choose Properties.
 
The Gen3 capture card device properties window is now visible.
 
 
Figure 52: Gen3 capture card properties
Drive properties Current StateDrive properties Current State
 
See Capture card device properties for more explanation of the capture card properties in Windows Device Manager.
 
How to create virtual adapters
Revised: 2016-09-20
By default, Observer recognizes a Gen3 capture card as a single network adapter. However, you can make multiple clones of the capture card, called virtual adapters, and use each independently.
Your hardware appliance must have one of the following:
Gen2 capture card
Gen3 capture card
Each virtual adapter is a cloned Gen3 capture card that can have physical ports assigned to it in any quantity and combination. In this way, Observer can then see and use multiple network adapters as if they physically existed in your hardware appliance.
Video 2: Virtual adapters
By default, you already have one virtual adapter: it matches the installed Gen3 capture card exactly, unless you accidentally deleted this virtual adapter or unassigned some of its ports. It can be recreated by following these same steps.
To create a virtual adapter:
1. In Observer, right-click the Gen3 capture card-equipped probe instance from the probe list, and click Probe or Device Properties.
A Gen3 capture card-equipped probe instance shows (Gigabit) or similar after the name.
2. Click the Virtual Adapters tab.
Figure 53: Virtual Adapters tab
3. Click New Adapter.
The Assign Ports to Virtual Adapter window opens.
4. Type a name in the Adapter Name box.
5. Select physical ports from the Available Ports list, and click Add.
You can select more than one physical port by holding CTRL as you click.
6. (Optional) If this virtual adapter should operate during certain days and times only, select Schedule virtual adapter ports and follow the prompts.
(Optional) If you choose to set a schedule for your virtual adapter, the remaining steps in this procedure may not be followable as written.
7. (Optional) If the virtual adapter should skip (discard) duplicate packets, select Skip duplicate packets.
8. Select each added port, click Edit Port, and type a useful description for each port such as its connected device.
This description appears in the GigaStor Control Panel in Observer.
Note: If you want to filter on physical ports, an option in the hardware acceleration settings is described at .
9. Click OK to save the virtual adapter and close the Virtual Adapters window.
Changes to virtual adapters are not be saved until OK is clicked in the Virtual Adapters window.
 
The virtual adapter appears in the list of available network adapters when creating a probe instance. This allows you to assign the virtual adapter to a specific probe instance, among other benefits.
 
 
You should create a new probe instance for any virtual adapter you create, and assign the virtual adapter to that probe instance. This is because, by default, new virtual adapters are not assigned to any probe instance, so no data is collected with that virtual adapter until the virtual adapter is assigned to a probe instance.
 
How to remove duplicate packets in real time
Created: 2015-08-07   Revised: 2015-08-11
Use hardware acceleration on the Gen3 capture card to remove duplicate packets before they are captured to disk or acknowledged by Observer. This is called packet deduplication.
Hardware acceleration must be enabled on your Gen3 capture card for this feature to function. Hardware acceleration for your virtual adapter is enabled by default.
To use hardware acceleration to skip duplicate packets:
1. Right-click the Gen3 capture card-equipped probe instance and choose Probe or Device Properties.
2. Click the Virtual Adapters tab.
3. Click Edit Adapter.
4. In the Assign Ports to Virtual Adapter window, select Skip duplicate packets and click OK.
5. (Optional) Click Skip Duplicate Packets Configuration.
The Skip Duplicate Packets Using Hardware Accelerated Capture Adapter dialog appears.
Figure 54: Skip Duplicate Packets Using Hardware Accelerated Capture Adapter
Screenshot Gen2 Skip Duplicate PacketsScreenshot Gen2 Skip Duplicate Packets
6. (Optional) Select how duplicate packets are recognized by the Gen3 capture card and click OK.
Example: (Optional) For example, by selecting Examine IP time to live (TTL), the packet time to live is considered when determining a duplicate packet. If the option is cleared, TTL is ignored for all consideration of what is, and what is not, a duplicate packet.
7. Click OK to enable packet deduplication.
 
The Gen3 capture card now skips duplicate packets that it receives on the active instance. The duplicate packets will not be saved to disk or acknowledged by Observer.
 
How to assign physical ports to probe instances
Revised: 2016-09-20
By default, the active instance monitors network traffic from every physical port of your capture card—all the traffic is aggregated. If you want to instead “divide” your monitored network traffic by physical ports, to help you monitor certain SFPs separately from others, then you can use virtual adapters to assign specific physical ports to probe instances.
Your hardware appliance must have one of the following:
Gen2 capture card
Gen3 capture card
For example, suppose you are deploying an 8-port Gen3 capture card as follows:
Ports 1-4 are monitoring a collection of trunked links
The remaining ports are each connected to the SPAN (or mirror) port on a switch
In this scenario, it makes sense for Observer to view ports 1-4, for example, as a single stream of network traffic and to separate each of the four remaining ports into separate data streams. Virtual adapters are a convenient way to accomplish this separation or aggregation in real time, rather than depending on filters to sort through the traffic post-capture.
These are the general steps for assigning physical ports to a probe instance:
Create a virtual adapter (or have one already).
Assign physical ports to this virtual adapter.
Set a probe instance to use this virtual adapter as its NIC.
Tip! As a general reminder, you risk severe performance loss when using more than one active instance. These instructions do not create multiple active instances.
To assign physical ports to a specific probe instance:
1. In Observer, right-click the Gen3 capture card-equipped probe instance from the probe list, and click Probe or Device Properties.
A Gen3 capture card-equipped probe instance shows (Gigabit) or similar after the name.
2. Click the Virtual Adapters tab.
Figure 55: Virtual Adapters tab
3. Select a virtual adapter, and click Edit Adapter.
4. Select physical ports from the Available Ports list, and click Add.
You can select more than one physical port by holding CTRL as you click.
5. Click OK to return to the Virtual Adapters window.
6. Click OK to save the virtual adapter and close the Virtual Adapters window.
Changes to virtual adapters are not be saved until OK is clicked in the Virtual Adapters window.
 
The virtual adapter appears in the list of available network adapters when creating a probe instance. This allows you to assign the virtual adapter to a specific probe instance, among other benefits.
 
 
Next, you should change the monitored network adapter of a probe instance to use the virtual adapter.
 
How to change the monitored network adapter
Revised: 2016-09-20
If your probe has multiple network cards in it, you can choose which card you want to monitor.
This section applies to all probes and all versions of them, including Single Probe, Multi Probe, and Expert Probe on VIAVI or third party hardware.
Note: If you have a network card in your system, but it is not being seen or recognized by Observer, follow the instructions in No network adapter available.
Tip! If you are seeing only broadcast traffic, you do not have the correct network card selected or you do not have your switch port configured correctly as a SPAN/mirror port. Change the network adapter you are monitoring or configure the SPAN/mirror port.
When choosing the monitored adapter from within Observer for all probe versions:
1. In the probes list, select the probe instance.
2. Choose .
The Select Network Adapter window appears.
3. Select the network adapter you want to monitor, and click Select.
When choosing the monitored adapter on the probe for Multi Probe and Expert Probe:
1. Click Adapters and Redirection.
2. Select your probe instance and click Configure Adapter/Redirection.
The Edit Probe Instance window appears.
3. In the Selected Network Adapter area, change the network card you are monitoring.
 
The probe instance is now using the newly selected adapter.
 

1 PCIe lane speed is reported per lane, and the Gen3 capture card uses multiple lanes together.