A/B Fallback Switching – Automatic A/B Switching for Mission Critical Applications

With the growth of internet based commerce, it has becoming increasing important for web based businesses to make certain that their web sites are always online and available to potential customers. This provides convenience for customers and users, but it also poses a challenge to network administrators; in order to keep web sites up and running, it’s imperative that network hosts provide some degree of redundancy, in order to deal with the inevitable equipment and communication failures that arise from time to time.

One way to provide redundancy capabilities to web hosts and other mission critical network applications, is to include an A/B fallback switch (such as WTI’s AFS-16) in network and hosting configurations. Ideally, the A/B Fallback Switch should be able to automatically switch from a primary communication line to a secondary communication line, quickly and reliably, whenever a network device goes down or communication fails.

WTI’s AFS-16 A/B Fallback Switches can automatically reroute RJ45 data or ethernet lines from a primary line to a secondary line when a target device fails to respond to a ping command or when a user-defined alarm is triggered. Later, if the condition that originally caused the fallback switching is cleared, the AFS-16 can also automatically reroute A/B lines back to their original status.

In addition, when A/B switching occurs, the AFS-16 A/B Fallback Switch can also automatically generate an email, text message, SNMP trap or SYSLOG message to notify network administrators that a fallback operation has taken place. This allows IT personnel to respond quickly when primary devices fail, and quickly bring those devices back online in order to ensure redundancy in the event of further failures.

For example, in an application that includes a primary router and a secondary router, the AFS-16 A/B Fallback Switch could be configured to constantly ping the routers, checking for response to each ping command. If the primary router was to fail and cease to respond to ping commands, the AFS-16 could then automatically switch over to the secondary router, and simultaneously generate an alarm message which is sent to the network administrator. Likewise, if later the primary router was to begin responding to ping commands again, the AFS-16 A/B Fallback Switch could then automatically switch back to the primary router, and generate an additional message to notify IT personnel that the problem had been cleared.

This allows network administrators to respond quickly when devices fail, and quickly correct the problem that caused the outage in order to put the primary device back into service. This ensures that web access is always available when your customers need it, and also makes certain that any transactions or purchases that might have been made during the period of technical difficulties are not lost.

An A/B Fallback Switch is a vital part of any mission critical network application. For companies such as banks, financial service and credit card processing services, who need assurance that their websites are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year, the AFS-16 A/B Fallback Switch provides an invaluable tool for network redundancy, and proven assurance that their services will always be available, whenever their customers need them.

For over 30 years, Western Telematic, Inc. (WTI) has been an innovator in the field of remote management for IT facilities. Our comprehensive product line includes a wide range of Serial Console Server products, Switched PDU products and Remote Reboot Switch products to provide secure, remote management of servers, routers and other devices.

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