International Journal of Computer Networks & Communications (IJCNC)




Mohammad A  Rawajbeh1 , Vladimir Sayenko2 and Mohammad I. Muhairat3

1Department of Computer Networks, Al-Zaytoonah University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan

2Kharkov National University of Radio Electronics (KhNURE) Kharkiv, Ukraine

3Department of Software Engineering, Al-Zaytoonah University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan


The process of choosing and integrating a network management system (NMS) to an existing computer network became a big question due to the complexity of used technologies and the variety of NMS options. Most of computer networks are being developed according to their internal rules in cloud environments. The use of NMS requires not only infrastructural changes, consequently increasing the cost of integration and maintenance, but also increases the risk of potential failures. In this paper, conception and method of express choice to implement and integrate a network management system are presented. Review of basic methods of cost analysis for IT systems is presented. The simplified conception of cost benefits analysis (CBA) is utilized as a basis of the offered method. A final estimation is based on three groups of parameters: parameters of expected integration risk evaluation, expected effect and level of completed management tasks. The explanation of the method is provided via example.


Network Management; NMS; CBA; Integrated System; Cost Analysis; Efficiency Criterion


It is early or late, but for any complexity computer network the updating process begins. This process changes not only the hardware of computer network but also its infrastructure. The software structure is changed, and functionality properties are changed too. This problem is described very nice in [1, 4]. The responsibility on these actions is an administrator. He makes the update operations according to the pre-determined network management concept. The basic principals of those concepts are considered in [1, 2]. The simplest schema of this concept according to [1] is FCAPS (Fault, Configuration, Accounting, Performance, and Security). The more complex schema is Microsoft Framework MOF 4.0 [3]. For the considered task we can use the simplest schema FCAPS and choose the Configuration Management functions. According to MS MOF 4.0 and Management functions (SMF) we can choose “Change and Configuration SMF”. In the MS MOF 4.0 for C&C SMF we find a good description of the updating process for the change procedure and the descriptions of the correspondence responsibilities roles. The choose procedure for the alternative software elements is an administrator’s decision.

For the existence computer network infrastructure any changes leads to changes of the computer network state. These changes carried out the “positive” (A) and “negative” (B) effects. As a result, for each Softi (Software updates) there are unique evaluations (A, B). The figure 1 shows that the administrator has to chose the best optimal solution.

Figure 1. Choice solution for integrated software

And he has two main questions “How?” and “What?”. The question “How?” means the evaluation method for (A, B). The methodology questions of that task is considered in [5]. The question “What?” means the rules and criteria to chose the concrete system from the existence set. This choice is dependent on the type of software updating service or apps Softi .

Let’s consider the task when Softi= NMS (Network Management System). It means that the existence NMS should be changed or a new NMS should be implemented. The usage of management tools becomes actual, and it improves network administration, automated storage operations and management information analysis. The example of this tool is Network Management System (NMS) [1, 2]. The complexity of the managed system increases the complexity of the management system.

In this situation, infrastructural changes will not only increase the cost of integration and maintenance, but will also increase the risk of potential failures. Integration of the NMS may sometimes reduce the efficiency of the whole system as well.

Based on the above, the problem of estimating the efficiency of integrating the new network management system into an existing infrastructure of information space is actual. In view of certain situations, the decisions about the integration of a special system often must be taken rapidly. It depends on the real financial condition of the company. These solutions could be considered as an independent IT e-space [13] or within separate functions of network management frameworks. Such frameworks are financial management MOF SMF [3] or ITIL [16]. They are parts of the general complex concept of the functions and areas of network management frameworks.

As a result, the considered task is presented as Figure 2.

Figure 2 .Choice solution for integrated network management system

The questions “How?” and “What?” are remained open, but the choice of NMS could be done according to FCAPS demands. It means that the evaluation of “positive” and “negative” effects could be considered according to FCAPS concepts: A(FCAPS),B(FCAPS). The answers on the questions “How?” and “What?” are bound with the evaluation procedures of A(FCAPS), B(FCAPS). They belong to the area of efficiency and cost analysis for the implemented systems Softi. Additionally, there is the time restriction to make optimal decision (Time < T*)

In such cases, the availability of methods that allow justifying such a decision is actual.

Such methods and techniques are Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) [7], Total Benefits of Ownership (TBO) [8] and Return On Investment (ROI) [9]. These techniques were successfully used in assessing the effectiveness of new information systems implementations, for example,Cloud system [11] and Data Center.

Of course, these are good techniques, but they have one big disadvantage. Actually, they are the ultimate economic methodologies that require qualified experts, high research level and time expenses. Most of the techniques are based on three main approaches: estimation of costs associated with the implemented systems, estimation of implementation risk, and estimation of  benefits.

Here are the examples of some popular techniques that can help estimate the impact of the new IT solution integration for complex information systems. For example, TCO [7] allows us to estimate the total costs, TBO [8] helps evaluate the benefits of such integration, IT IR (IT Integration Risk) [12] allows analysing and evaluating the risk, ROI (ROI) [9] allows evaluating the efficiency of an investment. In [19] proposed the several dimensions of complexity that have to be considered during the building of cost management model (CM), and found that, the reliability of the model is depending on the degree of complexity.

Out of all described concepts, two of them are the most widely used; namely TCO and TBO.Both concepts are based on the determination of the purchase price of an asset plus the costs of operation, but they possess opposite ideas under the hood. The TCO shows how the costs will increase after integration of a new system, whereas the TBO points to the benefits of the integration with the same system. The Cost-Benefit Analysis belongs to the ratio approach to decision-making processes [18].

Another popular concept is Cost benefit Analysis (CBA) [6, 7]. It uses two components; one of them considers the cost of integrated information technology and the problems that rise after the main system configuration change (e.g., additional cost and effort associated with the restructuring of the management, the staff adaptation period and so on.). The second one considers the advantages that we get after the system integration. It appears that the CBA is a more advanced approach for these tasks.

The article consists of the review part, formulation of the problem, description of the concept,description of the parameters, proposed method of analysis and examples.



2.1.1. THE AIM

 The aim of the article is to identify the ways of express (simplified) selection of Network Management Systems implementation and their integration.


Assume that some company has deployed a computer network. There is a need for additional integration of specialized network management system. The question of the implementation or integration of complex (expensive) software is considered. At the same time, there are alternative ways to purchase one of several types of such software systems. Suppose there is an IT department in the company. It is responsible for the network administration. The head of department should take the decision about integration in limited time.


It is necessary to have a method (technique) that allows making the decision of the NMS systems selection from available alternatives. This method should be relatively easy to use. It should not demand additional specialist involvement from other departments or companies. The number of method parameters should be small, the criteria should take into account the level of solving the basic problems; the results of the analysis should be understandable for managers and the network administrator.

The basic approach of the problem solving is assessing the benefits of new system integration,estimating the level of existing problems, and resolving and assessing the possible problems arising from the new software (system) exploitation.


Let us have three groups of criteria. The first group describes the level of probable risk (Er(NMS)). It means that we highlight the most significant problems on administrator’s mind.These problems could appear in the network after new system integration.

The second group covers the effectiveness of the network maintenance (Ee(NMS)). We suppose that after integration of the NMS, the general effectiveness is going to increase. In general the effectiveness is characterized as, D0 = E1 / E0 ,(E1 ,E0) [0,1] , where E1 ,E0 are the current and basic variables. In this case, we use “time” and “money” as the main characteristics. This is a complex problem for direct values estimation, so we should use the indirect characteristics such as the maintenance of the network. We assume that if we improve the maintenance of the network, the main characteristics will be improved as well. The maintenance and efficiency will be considered for the independent management areas. There are several concepts of representation of management areas [1, 6]. In accordance with the concept based on the OSI RM (ISO) the management is divided into 5 areas or 5 basic management functions – FCAPS (Configuration,Performance, Fault, Accounting, and Security) [1, 2]. It should be noticed that the proposed division of Microsoft SMF MOF 4.0 suggests 18 functions [3]. In addition, there is also a TMN (ITU-T) [1, 2] classification.

The third group evaluates the completion level of the general solutions on the system integration (Ef(NMS)). It is possible that the integrated system will not solve all of the management problems completely, and after the purchase of the system, we will have to buy another one (This is an incomplete solution).

So that, instead of abstract “positive” (A) and “negative” (B) variables, we can evaluate the effectiveness levels, completion and probable risk. The task is as evaluation of values for (Ee,Er, Ef).

The Figure 3 shows that the task became clear for administrator. Instead of the question “How?” he can use the evaluation procedures for each considered NMS.

Instead of the question “What?” he can use the analysis procedure and the set of criteria. All solutions will be conformed to FCAPS and MS MOF 4.0 (C&C SMF). All previous demands will be in force.

Figure 3. Choice concept for integrated network management system

The concept of a NMS comparison may be represented in the form of five stages:

1. Evaluation of the level of probable risk for the integrated system.
2. Evaluation of the benefits after system integration in the network      maintenance.

3. Estimation of completion level after system integration.
4. Evaluation of the generalized criterion of selection expediency of        the system to be integrated.
5. Estimation scale formation for comparative variables.

The generalized criterion should be an integrated variable. Estimation scale formation for comparative variables means that for all variables we should have a single scale. It should be with relative values on the interval [0, 2] with the control fixed points {0, 1, and 2} = {<bad>, <OK>,<good>}.

This approach allows getting the normalization and standardization of all variable values and makes them uniform.



Let us introduce four types of criteria for this group: load ( Load ), complexity of the administration ( Adm ), network security ( Sec ) and cost of ownership for the system ( Cst ).

“Load” means the approximate amount of traffic that is generated by the new system throughout on network. Actually, it is an evaluation of the additional network load, created by the service
management traffic. It is determined as the total generalized estimate, based on the average load at the workstation Load(WS) , the average load at the segment Load(Seg) and the average load at
the server Load(Ser) .

The point is as follows. The integration increases the administration process and could increase
the complexity of the base network and its infrastructure.


According to five Management areas (FCASP), it is recommended to use five criterions: performance ( Pe ), configuration (Ce ), Fault tolerance ( Fe ), security ( Se ) and accounting ( Ae ).

In this group, “Performance” means the state of data performance (real throughput) in case of the integrated system usage. It is expected that the value of performance criterion will increase after
the integration. This is an expert estimation.

with the criterion Ce®max . .

“Fault tolerance” means the improvement in the detection, prediction and prevention of possible failures elimination. It could be estimated by Minimum Time before Repairing (MTBR) or by reducing the number of faults. It is recommended to use an expert estimation.


In general, this group can be represented by a list that does not coincide with the previous group;it will be more suitable when the lists are the same.

“Performance” is a number of criterions that characterize the problems, which are being resolved, and their level of completeness. Use the estimation

“Fault tolerance” means the fact of solving the task of fault management in the network. Use the


This final generalized criterion is estimated as the ratio of sums of efficiencies (Ef(NMS) + Ee(NMS) ) to the criterion of expected risk Er(NMS) . Since the value of criterion Er(NMS) could be equal to 0, use a biased estimate (1+ Er(NMS)) . The final equation will be

This final equation takes into account all criterions and allows to compare all decisions.

As a result, we have a convolution of the evaluations as it shown on Figure 4.

Figure 4. Convolution of the evaluations.


The final method of estimation consists of six steps.
1. General analysis of all considered existing systems.
2. Evaluation of the level of probable risk for the integrated system. This step should cover the following points: the evaluation of the additional network load created by service traffic (1), (2),(3), the probable increase of complexity of administering process (4), the probable decrease of security level (5), cost evaluation depends on integrated system such as: cost of purchase ( Cst(In) ), cost of deployment ( Cst(Use) ), cost on supporting (Cst(Sup) ) (6) and general estimation of probable risk Er (NMS) (7).

Figure 5 illustrates the flowchart for the method of “Evaluation of the probable risk level”.

Figure 5. Flowchart for the method of “Evaluation of the probable risk level”

3. Evaluation of the benefits after integrating the system in maintaining the network. This step should cover the following points: the evaluation of the probable improving of performance (8),configuration management (9), network in general (10), security level (11), accounting for users (12) and evaluating the total value of expected efficiency Ee (NMS) (13).

Figure 6 illustrates the flow charts for the method of “Evaluation of the benefits” (a) and “Evaluation of the completion level” (b).

4. Evaluation of the completion level after system integration. This step should cover the following points: the evaluation of the supporting level for performance (14), for configuration  management (15), for fault tolerance (16), for security management (17), for user accounting (18), and evaluation of the total value of expected completion level Ef (NMS)(19).

5. Evaluation of the total criterion valueQ(NMS) .
6. Processing of the final analysis and decision making on selection of the system to integrate (20).

Figure 6 (c) illustrates the flow charts for general method.

Figure 6. Flowchart for the sub-methods: (a) for “benefits after
 integrating”, (b) for “completion level,(c) “the general method”


The backbone of the proposed method is based on the fact that this method and technique use expert assessment and express evaluation of the complex technical and cost criteria.They are oriented on the evaluation of total risk and benefits when there is a need of integration of a new information system to the existing infrastructure of a computer network.

The proposed method and the concept should be compared to CBA analysis [1, 2], or other methods of analysis, that are used for analysis of different information systems [10, 14, 15].First of all, the proposed concept is a simplification of the existing one. There are three proposed groups of criteria. These are the main features of the proposed method. The assessment methodology is presented for each group of the criteria. In opposite to traditional methods [10, 7,
14, 15], it is proposed to use expert estimates. In this case, head of the IT department could make the evaluation process. There is no need to do detailed cost analysis. The proposed method is simple, flexible and allows performing the required analysis and justification in a short time. The number of criteria parameters in the method is small. The criteria take into account the basic network management problems. The results of the analysis are clear for managers and the network administrator.

The proposed method is used for fast pre-assessment. TCO methods can be used as a supplement to make more extended evaluation. One more additional implementation of this approach is creating the different IT e-spaces [13]. This feature helps to manage infrastructure solutions.The main features of the suggested solution are the following. Firstly, it offers a symbolic language that is understandable by all of office managers. This approach helps to form the development strategy of the computer network infrastructure, as well as to coordinate the strategy according to the company’s financial plans and policy of financial management.

Figure 7. Schema of the methodology

Secondly, it offers a simple method of different solutions comparative assessment. This allows the network administrator to make a proper decision quickly for the required system selection.
This situation is very typical in real life.

Thirdly, the proposed solution is focused on the integration of NMS, although it can be applied to the integration of any complex information system. In this case, however, it is necessary to review a set of criteria.

Why should we choose the estimation scale [0, 2] instead of [0.1]? This is the choice of the authors. We can affirm that values {0, 1, 2} are more suitable to interpret than fractional values.They are integer, but in general, it would be possible to use a scale [0, 1]. All of the arguments would stay in force.

For the final criterion, we should select a range [0, 4]. If we select a range [0, 2], we get the values close to 0.5. In this case, it is difficult to determine and interpret the difference between various values.

How do the changes of value for Er influence on the values of Q(NMS)? The diagram on the Figure 8 shows these with conditions Er =(2, 1, 0) and Sum=Ee(NMS)+Ef(NMS)= (1, 2, 3, 4).

Figure 8. Diagram for Q(NMS) by changing Er

For the final evaluation we can chose the basic values as a classification of general
estimation. These values are given in the Table 1.

Figure 9. Diagram for general estimation Q(NMS)

Why does it put a limit on the number and type of criterions? The answer is that, all solutions are offered for specific systems, NMS.



Suppose there are three systems: C1− a simple multifunctional system, C2– a multifunctional system, and C3– a full multifunctional system.

The second system is a different one. The load of service traffic is an average of Load(Net) = 1,the complexity of administration process is an average of Adm(Net) = 1, the level of security is an average of Sec(Net) = 1, and the cost is an average of Cst(Net) = 1 . Therefore, the total estimation is equal to Er ( NMS)= 1.

Third system is a complex multifunctional system, perhaps like management platforms MS System Center or IBM Tivoli. This system has an additional impact on the existing network administration process and complicates it’s Load(Net) = 2 , Adm(Net) = 2 . This can change the security level; Sec(Net) = 2 , and has a high cost;Cst(Net) = 2 . Thus, the final estimate of the
expected risk is equal to Er (NMS )=2 .


For the first system, we find that the benefits will not be significant and they will not change the performance, security faults or accounting criterion. Suppose that they are focused only on the
collection and monitoring processes are related to the state of network configuration. Then, we have respectively:


The first system does not have high level of functionality, so the estimations will be:

All results and the final estimation Q(NMS) are shown in Table 2.

It can be seen that this technique does not allow directly specifying which system to choose, but it can help justify any choice.

If we choose the first system, we spend the least amount of money and make ourselves the least number of problems, but it solves a very small number of tasks. Often, it cannot give us the possibility of functional extensions. This is a good solution when the IT-Department is small.

If we choose the second system, we restrict ourselves to a partial solution of basic problems. This solution is good for common types of the administrative department: the risk is low and the problem is alleviated.

If we choose the third system, then deliberately and consciously we are switching to higher risks and costs, but the effect of the system integration will be much higher. This solution is good for the IT-administration department of a large corporation.

In real life, there are no such particular situations such as Systems 1, 2, and 3. The most values of criteria are very different, so in this case, the proposed method can be very useful.

The generalized criterion is effective for choosing an integrated system at the comparative analysis. It can be seen that the result is not very different in all three cases (Recall that for this method we have the border values Q = 4).

This means that in reality the overall efficiency dose not greatly increase because of the problems with integrating or implementing required systems and because of the incompleteness of final solutions.


 The main advantage of the proposed method is the possibility of using it to make decisions at the real-time operational mode. It uses only the resources of experts. One question is valid – is there a risk of errors by experts? Yes, of course, the error is allowed, but the criteria are chosen in such way that the error be minimized.

It is expected to develop the proposed method to optimize the infrastructure of computer networks and extend these solutions for cloud systems.


The questions of express choice when integrating a new information system on the class of Network Management Systems was covered in this article. All solutions are valid for a complex computer network. A review of basic methods of IT systems cost analysis is discussed. The main results include the presentation of the concept and method of express assessment of new information system selection, which is going to be integrated to the existing one. The concept describes a general framework to solve the problem, the method and how to solve it. The results
are scientific and novel.

General description of the scientific results can be presented in the following way. The simplified method for evaluation of the appropriateness of the selection algorithm, based on the expert express risk assessment of the system integration, was further developed. The level of the completion and success of the problem solution is accelerated as well. This method can help reduce the financial costs and decrease financial risk in integrating new systems.

The practical significance of the results is that they can be successfully used to solve problems of computer networks infrastructure management and in the assessment of different kinds of information system selection, not just the NMS ones. This reduces the investment risk and causes a reduction of financial costs in general.


Special Acknowledgement to Al Zaytoonah University of Jordan, for supporting this research paper.All solutions were obtained according to the research project in the “Network Management” laboratory, Control Information System Department, Kharkov National University,Kharkov, Ukraine.


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Dr. Mohammad Al Rawajbeh is an associate professor at the Computer Network Department, Faculty of Science and Information Technology, AL Zaytoonah University of Jordan. Received the High Diploma Degree in Computer Technology from Yarmouk University, Jordan in 1991. Received B.SC and Master Degree in computers and networks from Kharkov National Polytechnic University, Ukraine from 1992-1996. Obtained his Ph.D. degree in Computer Network Management from Kharkov National University of Radio-Electronic,Ukraine. His research interests are in the fields of network management, performance evaluation, and internet technology. He has more than 18 published articles in International Journals and Conferences.

Prof. Vladimir I. Sayenko. Professor of Information Control Systems department in Kharkov National University of Radio Electronics, European Engineering Educator IGIP (ING-PAED), Head of Network Management Laboratory. In 1979 graduated with honours from the Control Systems Department, Kharkov Institute of Radio Electronics (specialty — Automated Control Systems), then worked as engineer, junior scientific associate, senior scientific 1987 defended the candidate dissertation (PhD) on the topic: “Identification of Objects of Technical Systems with the Use of Patch Functions”. 1995 – Received an associate professor certificate. Since 2001 – has been working as a professor, and at 2001 get the title “European Engineer-Educator” (ING-PAED IGIP). Supervised many postgraduate dissertations. His research interests in Network Management, Computer Network Optimization, Cloud Systems, and Internet of Things. He has more than 80 published papers.

Dr. Mohammed I. Muhairat received the M.Sc. degree in Computer Engineering from Kharkov State Technical University of Radio Electronics, Ukraine in 1997, and the Ph.D. degree in Information Technology from Kharkov National University of Radio Electronics, Ukraine in 2002. Currently, he is Associate Professor of Software Engineering Department and Deputy Dean of Scientific Research and Higher Studies Deanship at Al Zaytoonah University of Jordan. His research interests in Software Engineering field, such as, Requirements Specification, Software Architecture, Software Development Process, Reverse Engineering, and Formal Methods. He has more than 20 published articles in International Journals and Conferences.

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