Why Does a Terminal Switch need a Multi-Level User Directory?

Since many different departments often share access to the various elements found in a network equipment rack, it makes sense that those departments will also need to share access to a terminal switch unit installed in that same equipment rack. It doesn’t really matter if a terminal switch is used to provide out of band access to console port command functions on network devices, or if it’s used to collect data from connected network devices; users in different departments will often have reason to use the secure access capabilities or data storage functions that are provided by a terminal switch unit.

It also follows that when more users need access to a terminal switch unit, the task of managing those users and their individual access privileges also grows more complicated. One way to simplify the task of managing multiple terminal switch users, is to make certain to pick a terminal switch solution that includes a multi-level user directory.

A terminal switch with a multi-level user directory enables network administrators to quickly add or remove terminal switch users, define passwords and set command and serial access port privileges, all from a centralized interface. A full-featured user directory allows network administrators to easily determine which commands each user will be allowed to access; user accounts can be granted access to all command functions, including advanced configuration commands, or limited to only basic command functions such as data retrieval or port connection. This allows administrators to set up account privileges for a wide variety of different types of users, and easily adapt user command privileges to fit the requirements of each user job function.

In addition, a multi-level user directory also enables network administrators to restrict or grant access to terminal switch serial ports and connected devices. Each user account can be set up to allow access to serial ports and devices that are relevant to a particular user or department, while restricting access to serial ports and devices that are outside of the domain of the user or department. This allows users to share the out of band access and data buffering functions offered by the terminal switch, and controls the type of ports and devices that each user is allowed to access.

An out of band management solution that includes a terminal switch provides users and administrators with a powerful tool for managing remote network elements, collecting data from buffered devices and communicating with important network equipment when communication via the main network is not available. Given the capabilities provided by a terminal switch, it’s not surprising that many different types of users will need to access the terminal switch. A multi-level user directory provides a simple, convenient means to custom tailor port and command access rights for each terminal switch user; providing each user with access to the capabilities that they need, while preventing users from invoking commands or connecting to ports that are outside of their job function and department.

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