Visualizing Application Flows with xtractr
MuDynamics has some interesting visualizations on network traffic data created with a tool called ‘xtractr’ that breaks the logs into ‘flows’.
It’s a RESTful server that indexes large packet captures for the purposes of forensics, data extraction, reporting, etc. While xtractr can generate all sorts of cool reports and charts, they don’t quite capture the dynamic essence of the network. Users come and go, they tweet, machines send queued emails, phone calls fly around, files get transferred. Static reports and visualizations (Top Talkers anyone?) just don’t do justice to this flurry of activity that happens on a network.
It’s a powerful interactive way of not only visualizing the data, but searching and analyzing it for important patterns and structures. Definitely worth at least watching the video.