The DAN or Data Access Network is a newly emerging “best practice” for passive monitoring of mission critical networks that solves real access problems, improves network performance and uptime, and saves capital, operation and maintenance costs. A DAN is a combination of out-of-band data access switching plus passive monitoring instrumentation to enable required security, compliance, forensics review, application performance, VoIP QoS, uptime and other network management tasks. Data is acquired from multiple SPAN ports or taps and multicast to multiple tools, aggregated to a few consolidated tools, and filtered or divided across many instances of the same tools. The DAN may be thought of as a “data socket” providing immediate access for ad hoc tool deployment without impact to the production network and outside of the scope of configuration management policies. Data Access Networking is a concept whose time has come due to a recent confluence of factors including enhanced fiduciary responsibilities, heightened threats to network security, real convergence of voice, video and data networks, plus greater economic dependency on network uptime and performance. This Podcast recommends the DAN as a solution to those who suffer real problems like too many tools and not enough span ports, too many links to monitor and not enough money to deploy distributed tools, or too much traffic that threatens to overflow even the highest capacity tool. For more details, visit http://www.gigamon.com.