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Network TAPs Overview: The Start of Visibility Architecture


Gain Network Visibility and Traffic Access with Network Taps

Change is coming to networks faster than ever before. While growth is a new constant in most networks, it is being compounded by new regulations, virtualization of workloads and services, changing security needs, and migration of applications between data centers and the cloud.

Due to the constant cycle of change creating a scalable visibility architecture ensures that your monitoring and security tools see all the data. Traditional monitoring methods, such as port mirroring, can be costly and add layers of complexity. The first question in designing this architecture is how you access the data?





A test access point (TAP) allows you to set up a permanent in-line monitoring device that mirrors all the traffic that is passing between network nodes. The TAP will then copy the data continuously, 24/7 to your packet brokers, packet analyzers, intrusion detection systems or other security tools, without introducing a point of failure.

Network TAPs come in variety of configurations:

TAPs vs Span Ports

  • Copper Taps – electrical hardware access point for copper infrastructure from 10/100M to 10/100/1000 all the way to 10Gig copper.
  • Optical Fiber Taps - extracts signal from the optical fiber without breaking the connection
  • Virtual Taps - software-based tap that that captures a copy of the east west data flowing between virtual machines (VMs)
  • Media Conversion -  (copper to fiber) – Bridge the gap between copper and fiber infrastructures and extension of fibre from multimode to single mode
  • Regeneration Taps - Create multiple copies of network data to support multiple devices from a single connectivity point
  • Aggregation Taps - Merge traffic streams into one monitoring port to reduce appliance costs, often used in combination with filtering taps, ie: filter, aggregate data streams
  • Passive, listen-only TAPs -  for monitoring devices – Taps which can only export traffic and not receive any traffic on the monitoring ports.
  • iBypass Tap -  inline network TAPs that provide a failsafe for security tools - Prevents in-line devices from causing a network downtime if they fail or need to be updated.

Contact Us


Telnet Networks Inc.
1324 Andersen Drive
Kingston, ON  K7P 0C6


(800) 561-4019



For More Information about Telnet Networks, our products, or our services, or to request a quote please feel free to contact us directly.