Network management is the execution of the set of functions required for controlling, planning, allocating, deploying, coordinating, and monitoring the resources of a network, including performing functions such as initial network planning, frequency allocation, predetermined traffic routing to support load balancing, cryptographic key distribution authorization, configuration management, fault management, security management, performance management, bandwidth management, and accounting management.
A large number of protocols exist to support network and network device management. Common protocols include SNMP, CMIP, WBEM, Common Information Model, Transaction Language 1, Java Management Extensions - JMX, and netconf.
Data for network management is collected through several mechanisms, including agents installed on infrastructure, synthetic monitoring that simulates transactions, logs of activity, sniffers and real user monitoring.