What is a Network Tap

A network tap is an external device that creates a “copy” of the traffic for use by various monitoring devices. It allows port mirroring. The traffic on the network is unaffected by the act of monitoring or port mirroring. Because the monitoring is performed by a device external to the network, on a copy of the traffic, this deployment is often referred to as 'out of band'. Taps can be Active or Passive.
 
 
A chart showing where network taps sit within a typical network architecture

Niagara Network Taps

Niagara Networks offers passive or active taps. A wide range of connectors and fibre types are supported.

Active Taps

Active Taps

Are based on an active switching configuration for generating a “copy” of the traffic. “Copy” traffic is regenerated and there is no loss of signal power. In the case of power failure, “copied” traffic may be lost, but network traffic flows uninterrupted.

Passive Taps

Passive Taps

Are based on optical coupler (splitter) so that the tapped network point and appliance are always connected. Passive taps don't need a power supply in order for them to work!