A Terminal Switch Provides a Valuable Tool for Out of Band Management

The out of band management capabilities provided by a terminal switch can be a real life saver for network administrators who are charged with the task of managing remote network equipment racks. Without a terminal switch, often the only way to deal with problems at remote equipment sites is a costly service call or truck roll to a remote equipment site that might take hours, or even days to reach. Obviously, the remote console port command access provided by a terminal switch can be a real life saver, but the remote monitoring and alarm notification capabilities provided by a full featured terminal switch can be equally helpful too.

A terminal switch that includes environmental and event monitoring capabilities provides network administrators with a way to accurately check conditions at remote equipment sites without the need to station permanent personnel at the site or make constant trips to the site to check on conditions in person. Popular terminal server features such as temperature alarms, power interruption alarms, ping failure alarms and invalid access alarms allow network administrators to keep constant tabs on conditions at remote equipment sites, and provides administrators with knowledge that allows them to deal with small equipment problems before they grow to a point that might effect overall network stability.

Events such as rack temperature spikes, network elements that fail to respond to a ping commands, power outages and loss of communication can be easily monitored by a terminal switch and logged for future review by the network administrator, or the terminal switch can immediately notify tech personnel when conditions exceed user-defined threshold levels. When high temperatures, excessive invalid access attempts and other important events are detected, the terminal switch can promptly notify the appropriate personnel via SNMP trap, email, text message or SYSLOG message, allowing prompt response to problems that could potentially interfere with network communication. Some terminal switch products also include the ability to notify multiple tech support personnel in the event that the primary contact does not respond.

An intelligently deployed, full-featured terminal switch essentially provides network administrators with a secondary pair of eyes and ears to keep constant watch on conditions and noteworthy events at remote network equipment sites. The monitoring, alarm and notification capabilities provided by a terminal switch are much less expensive than stationing permanent personnel at the remote site, and out of band access capabilities provided by the terminal switch enable a much quicker response when remote network element problems are detected. The combination of powerful monitoring and alarm features and out of band management capabilities allow network administrators to be kept constantly appraised of conditions and events at the remote site, and provide a fast, effective means to correct problems with remote network elements without even leaving the office.

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