Remote Reboot Units Help Busy Network Administrators to Conserve Valuable Time

In most cases, network administrators generally have a fairly busy work schedule; their days are already filled with firmware updates, security concerns and responding to user complaints and questions. In a fast paced work environment like this, the last thing that a network administrator needs is a long field trip to deal with an unresponsive network element located at some off-site data center or remote network equipment rack. When a server or router at a remote site fails and disrupts network communication, often the problem can be solved by a simple power reboot, but unless the data center or equipment rack includes a remote reboot unit, that simple power reboot often means a long journey to the equipment site, just to flip a power switch off and back on again.

A remote reboot unit provides network administrators with an out of band management solution for dealing with many problems at remote network equipment sites. When a remote reboot unit is installed at in the off-site data center or remote equipment rack, network administrators can securely connect to the remote reboot unit via dial-up modem or satellite modem, and reboot any device that’s connected to the remote reboot unit. Rather than traveling to the remote equipment site, or springing for an expensive service call or truck roll, in many cases the remote reboot unit allows network administrators to fix problems with remote network elements without even leaving their desk.

The principles behind a remote reboot unit are deceptively simple; when a vital network element at a remote site fails or crashes, administrators can quickly establish a secure connection with the remote reboot unit, and then use either a web-based interface or simple ASCII text command system to review conditions at the remote site, and initiate a reboot cycle at the outlet that powers the malfunctioning device. In addition to providing a fast, secure way to deal with unresponsive devices at remote network equipment sites, the remote reboot unit can also assist in power conservation, by providing a reliable means to take non-essential network devices off-line during periods when they are not needed or unlikely to be used.

Obviously, security is very important for any out of band management application, so when choosing a remote reboot product, it’s especially important to select a remote reboot unit that provides adequate security and authentication features to protect sensitive power control functions from unauthorized access. Ideally, the remote reboot switch should provide several layers of protection, including both standard security features such as password protection and IP address filtering, as well as popular authentication protocols such as LDAP, Kerberos, TACACS+ and RADIUS. In cases where administrators will need to contact the remote reboot unit via modem, it’s also vital that the remote reboot unit includes dial-up based security measures such as callback security.

In addition to providing remote power reboot and power control capabilities, high quality remote reboot units often include features that allow network administrators to monitor environmental conditions and track various events at the remote network equipment site. Features such as temperature monitoring, current consumption monitoring, invalid access attempt alarms and ping response monitoring can vastly increase the capabilities of a remote reboot unit, and provide network administrators with valuable tools that help to track conditions at the remote network equipment sites and further reduce the need for physical visits to the remote site.

Most network administrators are already busy enough, without the need for a surprise field trip to a remote equipment rack every time a server hiccups or a router decides to crash. A remote reboot unit can provide administrators with valuable remote power control capabilities that eliminate the need for service calls to remote equipment sites merely to initiate a power reboot, and powerful monitoring capabilities that help to provide administrators with a clearer picture of exactly what is going on at the remote site. When your off-site data center or remote equipment rack includes an out of band management solution that’s based on a remote reboot unit, there’s no need for network administrators to disrupt their already busy day with service calls and truck rolls, just to flip a switch off and back on again.

Link to Original Content

Tags: , , , , ,

Comments are closed.