If you don’t have Wireshark in your arsenal, download it now.
Wireshark, formerly ethereal, has become the defacto standard for protocol analysis. It is open source, so anyone can build dissectors for any protocol. If you use proprietary protocols in your products, you can create your own dissector, so Wireshark will decode just like any other standard protocol.
In a future post, I will show how to use Wireshark to look for packet loss in Microsoft Mediaroom flows without needing the encryption key.