The Network Power Switch – A Simple Solution for Remote Network Management

Network administrators who are responsible for managing network elements located at remote data centers or offsite network equipment cabinets have a much tougher job than administrators who are responsible for managing network equipment located at the central office. For one thing, many routine tasks that are incredibly easy to accomplish in the central office can present a much larger challenge when those tasks must be applied to network equipment located in remote network equipment racks. When network elements are located offsite, even simple chores, such as rebooting a crashed server or router, can often require a time consuming, expensive service call to the remote site, instead of just a walk down the hall to flip a power switch Off and back On again.

Although the task of managing remote network equipment is seldom as simple as managing a local device, there are ways to simplify the job without reliance on constant service calls or onsite personnel at the remote network site. For example, if the remote network equipment installation includes a network power switch, then in many cases rebooting a device at the remote location can actually be faster and easier than that walk down the hall to reboot a local device. A network power switch provides administrators and technicians with a secure, reliable means for rebooting remote network devices without even leaving the office or getting up out of their chairs.

It takes only minutes for an administrator to login to the network power switch, review device status and then initiate a reboot cycle via either simple ASCII commands or user-friendly web menu functions. Even when normal network communication is down or unavailable, administrators can still create an out of band connection to the network power switch via dial-up or satellite modem, and gain instant access to power reboot and switching functions in order to restore network communication with the remote site.

In addition to providing remote reboot capabilities, a good network power switch also allows network administrators to schedule power switching operations, monitor conditions at remote network sites, and automatically reboot unresponsive network devices without human intervention. In many cases, these features do a better job of handling routine maintenance and management tasks at remote network sites than an onsite operator could achieve. The capability to create power switching schedules allows the network power switch to automatically switch Off non-essential network elements during periods of time when they are less likely to be needed, or switch On cooling systems and other devices during periods of the day when they are needed the most. The monitoring and alarm functions provided by a network power switch allow administrators to keep tabs on rack temperatures, current consumption, power supply abnormalities and other important events by merely keying in few simple commands or clicks of the mouse.

The task of managing remote network elements can definitely be a challenge sometimes, but a network power switch can also make life a whole lot easier for network administrators who are saddled with the responsibility of keeping vital network elements located at remote, offsite locations up and running, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. An intelligently deployed network power switch can help harried administrators to stop wasting budgetary resources on expensive service calls to merely reboot a device at a remote site, and also help administrators to be kept better informed regarding conditions and events at offsite data centers and remote network equipment cabinets.

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