Practical uses for the Wireshark traffic sniffer

SHARK BITES

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If you know your way around network protocols, you can get to the source of a problem quickly with Wireshark.

A network sniffer is an indispensable tool for the troubleshooting sys admin. Linux users used to watch their networks with the popular open source sniffer known as Ethereal. Even Hollywood recognized the importance of Ethereal by featuring it in the movie Firewall. However, you might have noticed that no one has been talking about Ethereal recently.

Not too long ago (May 2006) the original author of Ethereal went to work for another company. All the trademarks for the Ethereal program stayed with his former employer; however, Ethereal is no longer actively maintained. A new sniffer called Wireshark is a fork of Ethereal that is maintained by the original Ethereal developer.

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