This post will be brief but Visio is better and has the most capabilities to create some very high-end diagrams and flow charts. However, Visio is not always available as it's fairly expensive. So for those other times, an Internet connection and a Google Apps account (google.com/a) can fill in quite nicely. Via Google Drive > Create > Drawing and you're off to creating some also nice diagrams in a flash.
Network connectivity issues or general network slowness due to congestion can be hard to pinpoint root cause. The open-source utility Wireshark is the go to for looking under the hood of network traffic. Install Wireshark on a laptop, create a mirrored port (SPAN, RSPAN on Cisco) on the core switch. A mirrored port will see all traffic across all VLANs and allow Wireshark to promiscuously capture packets/frames and report them in a straight forward way. Communication thread(s) streams can be reviewed in isolation and multicast or flooding can easily be seen and source or destination identified for resolution.
VisionApp has merged with ASG and now no longer releases their elegant, simple and free vRD 1.5 utility. Since the merger, vRD now supports multiple RDP methods, central database for simplifying deployment and terminal protocols all within a single console, things such as SSH, Telnet, etc. vRD is now paid but does offer a free 14-day trial. If you RDP into more than 1 anything, an RDP manager will make working more efficient.
Desktop Hypervisors: Hyper-V Vs. VMware Workstation
For those who test and prepare using personal VM's and snapshots, VMware Workstation is unmatched in it's abilities. Now there are alternative choices to the hypervisor used on a workstation. Oracle's VirtualBox and Microsoft's Hyper-V are now available for desktop Windows. We'll focus on Hyper-V and save VirtualBox for a future post. Since the hardware needs VT enabled in the BIOS, only one hypervisor can be used. VMware Workstation is full-featured and the Snapshot Manager beats both Oracle and Microsoft's abilities. However, Hyper-V is free with Windows 8, VMware Workstation is around $180. VMware offers the VM Player for free but with limited features.