Learn about some basic Nmap flags that you can use to generate a quick and useful network map to discover the scope of a network in a new environment, troubleshoot and manage network traffic.


Have you ever shown up to a new job, ready to hit the ground running, only to have your enthusiasm drained by the slow yet stunning realization that nobody has any network diagrams?

You might scratch your head and wonder: “How does anything get done around here?”

But don’t worry—wherever there’s a problem, there’s an opportunity to be a problem solver. You didn’t hear it from me, but I’ve heard that problem solvers get raises.

This article is for discovering the scope of a network as a sysadmin in a new environment. As such, it covers simple Nmap flags to help somebody inside the network discover hosts and facts about them. This is not an article about security auditing, penetration testing, or other advanced Nmap use cases. If you’re new to Nmap and you need to get to know your network, then read on.