A Console Access Server with Outbound SSH/Telnet Support Provides More Alternatives for Communication

In out of band management applications that rely on a console access server (http://www.wti.com/c-51-console-access-servers.aspx) for communication with remote network devices, reverse/outbound SSH/Telnet can be an extremely useful feature. In addition to providing a means to communicate with other network devices, outbound SSH/Telnet is also extremely handy in cases where an equipment rack is not connected to your main network, and the only way to communicate with devices in the rack is via dial-up or satellite modem.

Most commonly, outbound SSH/Telnet allows network administrators to use the console access server to establish a connection with a remote network device, and then create outbound SSH or Telnet connections to other devices when direct communication with those devices is not possible or practical. This essentially provides an out of bound management tool, which provides communication with remote network devices when the main network is down.

In situations where dial-up or satellite modem communication is the only way to contact a remote network equipment installation, such as a distant equipment cabinet or monitoring application, outbound SSH/Telnet enables administrators to communicate with other devices on the remote network via the console access server. This means that administrators and IT support personnel can contact the console access server via modem and then employ the outbound SSH/Telnet function to communicate with any other networked device at the remote location. Since dial-up and satellite modem communication are much less expensive and troublesome than running a network cable out to some remote site in the middle of nowhere, outbound SSH/Telnet provides a simple, economical means for regular communication with remote sites by providing dial-up/satellite access to network communication at extremely remote sites.

Although outbound SSH/Telnet can be an extremely useful tool for network administrators, there are also cases where you might want to limit these capabilities to only advanced users and IT support personnel. With this in mind, it’s also helpful if the console access server supports the ability to limit access to outbound SSH/Telnet capabilities to only specific user accounts. This allows administrators to make certain that outbound SSH/Telnet is only employed by users who need that capability for their job function.

There are literally dozens of useful features to consider when selecting a console access server product for your out of band management application. Obviously, not every network application will need to use all of these features, but if you examine the needs of your specific network application, and determine which console access server features will best serve those needs, you’ll usually end up with a more efficient, practical out of band management application. Reverse/Outbound SSH/Telnet is just one of many helpful features to consider when planning your out of band communication needs for remote network applications.

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