Redundant Out-of-Band Management in Pipeline Support Applications

Out-of-Band Management provides tech support personnel with a secondary, alternative avenue for communication with remote network elements during network outages. If a vital network element at a distant facility crashes and takes down network communication with it, an out-of-band management solution provides the most efficient means to contact unresponsive devices and restore network communication in a timely fashion. In a typical network application, the presence of both a primary and secondary avenue for communication with remote network elements is usually enough to get the job done. But in mission critical network applications, such as managing remote network elements in gas pipeline support roles often more than two avenues for communications are needed and a redundant out-of-band management strategy is required.

Rather than provide only two avenues for remote access to reboot and console port functions, a redundant out-of-band management solution will usually provide at least three avenues for communication with remote network elements. In most redundant out-of-band management applications, the primary channel will allow communication via a primary network connection, while the secondary and tertiary channels will provide communication via secondary network, dial-up, satellite or cellular broadband. When a crashed router or switch at a distant compressor station or metering station disrupts communication via the primary channel, tech support personnel can still access remote reboot and console functions at the remote site in order to reboot, troubleshoot or reconfigure the troublesome router or switch and restore the primary network channel.

The ability to quickly and remotely deal with unresponsive routers, switches, wireless controllers, safety devices and security systems at distant pipeline support facilities provides an economical, time saving alternative to physical service calls and truck rolls. Rather than shutting down the pipeline for a day or so while waiting for tech support personnel to travel to a far-off compressor station or metering station, most everyday network emergencies can be dealt with quickly and effectively via the redundant out-of-band management solution. This helps to minimize downtime and avoid situations where network outages might interfere with production, safety or security concerns.

WTI’s RSM-8R8-DE Series Console + Power Hybrids include dual Ethernet ports plus an internal modem to provide the perfect solution for redundant out-of-band communication in vital network installations in pipeline support applications and other industries that demand constant, reliable network access to remote services and devices. In addition to serving as the heart of an effective redundant out-of-band management solution, WTI Console Servers and Switched PDUs also feature state of the art security and authentication features to ensure that sensitive command functions are safely protected from unauthorized access, plus event monitoring, logging and alarm functions to simplify the task of keeping track of significant events and conditions at the remote site.




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