Archive for the ‘Network Administration’ Category

A Console Server that Lets You Know When your Equipment Rack is too Hot or too Cold

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

In addition to allowing secure access to console port functions on remote network devices, a good console server should also be able to keep network administrators informed when environmental conditions inside of the rack could potentially impede the performance of network devices. For example, if rack temperature rises too high or falls too low, this can drastically effect both the longevity and operation of devices such as servers, routers, switches and firewalls.


A Simple Way to Manage Console Server Access Rights for Multiple Users

Monday, November 1st, 2010

A console server can be an extremely handy tool for remote network administration; sometimes, it can be almost too handy. Access rights usually aren’t a problem when only your IT support staff have access to your console server, but often, once other departments discover what can be done with a console server, they’ll suddenly need to use the console server too.


Outbound SSH/Telnet – Another Alternative for Connecting to Remote Network Devices

Friday, October 29th, 2010

Sometimes, it’s just not practical to run a network line or a phone line to a remote network installation. In cases like this, a WTI Console Server ( with Outbound SSH/Telnet capabilities provides the perfect solution for communication with devices on remote networks.


Know Exactly What’s Going On Inside Your Equipment Rack

Thursday, October 28th, 2010

All network administrators know the value of including a console server and an out of band management solution in remote network equipment sites. It’s simple; console servers save both time and money by providing an alternative means to contact remote network equipment when your principal network is not available. Remote access is definitely an extremely valuable capability for any network administrator who has to deal with problems at far-away equipment racks … but did you know that WTI console servers can also monitor environmental and operating conditions at remote network sites too?


Bypass Fibre Channel Switching for Small Storage Environments

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

If you’re in the process of designing a fibre based storage application, you might want to check this article out …

There is nothing more frustrating than building out a solution only to determine that while the costs for servers and storage have been accommodated for, the switching costs have not. I personally think we are in a transition time where fibre channel still makes sense in some situations where 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10 Gig-E) doesn’t quite make sense. For small installations, there is an opportunity to skip the fibre channel switch and connect the servers directly to the storage. This can even be possible in multiple node cluster configurations of two, three or more servers.


How to Optimize VM Memory and Processor Performance

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

Here’s how to get the most out of your VM memory …

The highly scalable server architectures available to modern datacenters have achieved unprecedented memory and CPU densities. As a result, VM density has also increased.  Some of the techniques used to build highly scalable servers can create an unintended performance problem for VMs. One common problem is NUMA node balancing. In this post, I’ll try to provide a high level overview of the problem and some of the ways to address it. Not all hypervisors deal with NUMA node issues in the same way so I have kept this post hypervisor neutral. Specifics for your virtual environment are best addressed with your vendor.


How Can a Console Server Detect a Network Problem Before Users Complain?

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

A well-designed console server should be able to do more than merely provide out of band communication with remote network devices; it should also be able to monitor remote devices and inform network administrators when potentially troubling conditions are detected. One of the most important tasks that a console server can perform, is to monitor ping response by remote network devices, in order to allow network administrators to know immediately when a device ceases to respond.


Serial Console Server – Reliable Command Access for Mission Critical Network Devices

Monday, October 25th, 2010

Generally, when we think of a console server, we usually think of a data center application that involves IT support personnel who need access to command functions on remote network equipment. For the most part, that stereotype rings true, but there are also plenty of other, more unusual applications that rely on the secure, remote command access that a console server can provide.


Why are Console Servers Such an Important Element in Large Corporate Data Centers?

Friday, October 22nd, 2010

There are many good reasons why large corporate data centers usually rely so heavily on out of band management solutions that include a console server ( For one thing, the very nature of a corporate data center often mandates that they’re located off-site, in a secure location, with access to the massive amounts of electrical power needed to support servers, routers, firewalls and cooling systems.


A Serial Console Switch with Alarm Notification via SNMP Trap

Thursday, October 21st, 2010

A serial console switch performs many different duties in a network application; it allows out of band access to network devices when your main network is down, it provides a backdoor to configuration and diagnosis functions without interfering with regular network communication, and it can also monitor network devices for potentially harmful environmental conditions and suspicious network events. Alarm and monitoring functions are an extremely useful capability, but only when the console switch includes a means to effectively notify network administrators when a problem is detected.