Full packet capture

As Trisul meters network traffic, it continuously saves raw packets for future analysis.The ability to call upon raw packets, or full content, is key to the practice of Network Security Monitoring. Raw packets is not just useful for security applications but also for network performance troubleshooting. For example, you can pull up ARP/Spanning Tree packets which can help you nail a layer 2 issue.Packet Capture Basics describes the design of in greater detail.

Use cases

Trisul allows you to summon raw packets from a number of situations. Some typical examples,

Context How you get to the raw packets
Retro analysis You are looking at top applications around 5AM yesterday and want to pull SMB packets in that period
Flows You want to see the content of the top 3 flows uploading data out of our network
Cross drill You can find out the top hosts and MACs contributing to DNS traffic between 5AM and 6AM last tuesday
IDS Alerts You want to see the packet that caused a shellcode snort alert. You also want to see nearby packets to the one that caused the alert.
Other Alerts Pull up raw packets for threshold crossing alerts, blacklist / CnC activity or flow tracker alerts
Resources Pull up raw packets for all HTTP flows that requested a *.dll resource
More Trisul has many meters in dozens of counter groups. With access to raw packets you can slice and dice statistics in a massive number of permutations

Task list

Jump to common network analysis tasks

  • View flow headers
  • Disable full packet captures
  • Allocate 100GB disk space for full packet captures
  • I dont want to store SYSLOG packets because I send them to splunk
View all tasks


  • Narrow down your analysis time interval
  • Adjust the maximum time interval and volume limit caps if needed
  • Use the Payload Search Tool if you are looking for pattern
  • For recurring tasks – use the programmatic interface Trisul Remote Protocol
  • Familiarize yourself with Wireshark
  • Use Unsniff Network Analyzer for reconstructing activity


Trisul Remote Protocol allows you to write simple scripts in Ruby to automate complex and repetitive tasks.