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  * The purpose of Clarified Analyzer and Recorder is to clarify how complex networks work. Main applications are troubleshooting and traffic auditing. We developed the software as we saw in our [http://www.ee.oulu.fi/research/ouspg/frontier/ Frontier]-research that the current tools did not scale to resolving problems of complex networks. The research was conducted at University of Oulu. Clarified Networks is a spinoff-company from that project. The company has now operated 2 years as income based, selling the software since day one.   * The purpose of Clarified Analyzer and Recorder is to clarify how complex networks work. Main applications are troubleshooting and traffic auditing. We developed the software as we saw in our [[http://www.ee.oulu.fi/research/ouspg/frontier/|Frontier]]-research that the current tools did not scale to resolving problems of complex networks. The research was conducted at University of Oulu. Clarified Networks is a spinoff-company from that project. The company has now operated 2 years as income based, selling the software since day one.

Python Success Story: Clarified Analyzer

http://www.python.org/about/success/

Stories should answer the following questions as completely as possible, although the article may present them in any order, as appropriate to the case:

  • What is the name of the project or software being described?
    • Product names are Clarified Analyzer and Clarified Recorder.
  • What is the purpose of the project? What problem does the software solve? How did the project come into being?
    • The purpose of Clarified Analyzer and Recorder is to clarify how complex networks work. Main applications are troubleshooting and traffic auditing. We developed the software as we saw in our Frontier-research that the current tools did not scale to resolving problems of complex networks. The research was conducted at University of Oulu. Clarified Networks is a spinoff-company from that project. The company has now operated 2 years as income based, selling the software since day one.

  • Briefly describe the architecture of the software and how Python is used. Please include major sub-systems and how they interact, what platform(s) it runs on, and other general technical background.
    • Clarified Analyzer runs on Windows, Linux and OS X. The Recorder runs on Linux. ?FixMe: someone please write about subsystems.

  • What led you to choose Python over other solutions? What other solutions did you look at before choosing Python, if any? How did Python compare?
    • We selected Python due the fact that it reduces significantly the time needed to develop a working program. Another upside was the portability of the developed code. We already had enough experience from other languages, such as Java, C, C++ and Perl to not even consider other options. Now, operating as a commercial company, the reduced time-to-market is invaluable to us.
  • What other technologies are used along with Python in the project(s)? What modules other than Python and its standard libraries are used? Any other programming languages? What development tools are used?
    • A very small portion of the Recorder software uses C. This component we call 'tap' is responsible on capturing network traffic to the disc.
  • Was Python used from the start or added to the project later? If added after the project was started, how did it change things? How did it affect development in general?
    • Python was used since day one.
  • How large is the project, in terms of number of developers, years of effort put into the project, size of the source code, number of
    • machines to which the software is deployed, or other metrics that apply?
      • We have developed the software since 2002. Since that there has been 2-5 developers actively participating on the development. The recorder & analyzer is now used by several large organizations in Finland. We are currently making the tools available to the rest of the world.

  • Would you describe this project/software as "mission critical"?
    • We consider our Analyzer and Recorder mission critical to organizations running complex networks. Having powerful high level visualizations of the network traffic with drill-down possibility to all the way to the packet level is crucial in understanding how the systems work. Through that understanding organizations cut down downtime and increase security.
  • How well did the project succeed? What was good about using Python? What problems did you encounter with Python, if any? What could be improved in Python?
    • The project has received numerous awards. An opensource version called ?HowNetworks won $100 000 first prize in VMWare's ultimal virtual challenge competition. Graduate thesis written in the Frontier-project win several national prices, such as: 'Best telecom related M.Sc thesis in Finland'

  • Is there any other information that should be included in the story? This might include additional technical information, links to related web material, quotes from project members, images with captions, and other material that will help to turn the above-provided answers into a coherent, interesting, and convincing story.

In writing up your story, please cover the story in chronological order. Begin by describing the background and the need that was filled by Python. Then cover the process of how Python was chosen (and why). Next, include experiences using Python with some useful/interesting technical detail about the project. Finally, summarize the results of having used Python on the project. Be sure to include sub-headings for the 2nd+ section of your story. If writing in the first person, or in a style that identifies you as the author, please submit a short (2-3 sentance) biography to include at the end of the story. Stories typically range from 800 to 2500 words in length.