When a network system goes down, or a remote device goes offline, IT administrators need a way to connect to field hardware and restore normal system operation. The best way to do that is with secure server out-of-band management platform.
Out-of-band (OOB) management is a nodegrid net services method of remotely controlling and managing critical IT assets and network equipment using a secure protocol connection through a secondary interface that is physically separate from the primary network connection. This enables administrators to gain control even during infrastructure faults using remote management.
Digi offers a number of Out-of-Band solutions, including Opengear's Network Resilience Platform - featuring Smart OOB™ management and NetOps Console Servers - and a full solution range of Digi console servers and network edge routers together with Digi Remote Manager®:
Out-of-band management is typically enabled through a serial console port, such as RS-232, which provides a command line interface for troubleshooting routers, servers, switches, power controllers, storage devices and other equipment. This enables administrators to configure, reboot, and reset devices if the primary network becomes unavailable.
Out-of-band management is especially useful for IT teams that need to branch manage large numbers of locations/islands at scale, where physical access to each individual device is nearly impossible. This cloud technology serves as a valuable component of any network disaster recovery solution. As networks are increasingly distributed, the need for an out-of-band management solution is even more important.
Critical IT assets are found across all modern enterprises, including traditional data center, regional distribution centers and branch locations. While the scenario is constant, the major variable is the number of devices at each island. Larger locations often have redundant wireline WAN/ethernet connections; the ability to reach these locations can be severely compromised in the case of a network incident. Cellular connectivity in every location ensures the greatest chance for rapid recovery.
Several factors distinguish the most effective approach to out-of-band management. One of these is wireless connectivity. Many nodegrid organizations provide back-up for primary copper or fiber connections with a secondary wired line to regional distribution centers and branch locations. However, back-up lines can be vulnerable to the same hazards that can affect a primary wired line.
The lines share the same conduits and may even connect to the same service solution providers. Wireless technologies bypass much of the wireline infrastructure, making wireless a more reliable solution for connectivity. In addition, with a cellular connection in pass-through mode, there’s no need to replace an existing router, firewall or SD-WAN appliance.
Wireless technologies bypass the wireline infrastructure, making wireless a more reliable choice for connectivity. In addition, with a cellular connection in pass-through mode, there’s no need to replace an existing router, firewall or SD-WAN appliance.
With wireless out-of-band management in place, most cloud device failures can be effectively addressed by remote management, avoiding costly onsite visits by service technicians. Meanwhile, cellular failover maintains seamless protocol connectivity with critical equipment when the primary network is offline, minimizing server downtime.
Networks are increasingly deploying IT infrastructure in remote locations. As data is collected closer to its source, there’s a greater need to monitor and manage the equipment from a central location. Troubleshooting and remediation at the access service edge, through the use of out-of-band management, empowers administrators to address problems quickly, before they result in a catastrophic network failure.
The flexibility to access and manage ethernet devices from anywhere is a fundamental capability of out-of-band management. Digi console servers, such as Digi Connect® IT 4 and Opengear Resilience Gateways, help enable continuous network uptime by functioning as an always-on cellular out-of-band gateway platform in remote locations such as branch offices, kiosks, retail stores and distributed infrastructure.
In addition, Digi Remote Manager — Digi’s centralized security and management platform — provides a unique form of out-of-band management through its integrated console terminal. Administrators can perform out-of-band management with virtually any enterprise hardware through a serial console connection using a combination of Remote Manager and Digi cellular products running the Digi Accelerated Linux (DAL) operating system. Digi Remote Manager allows devices to avoid using static IP addresses, providing greater security and management flexibility. An SMS emergency recovery mechanism enables administrators to reboot remote Digi devices even if they aren't currently transmitting TCP/IP data.
When using a console server from the Digi Connect IT family for out-of-band management through Digi Remote Manager, the architecture looks similar to the diagram above.
For administrators managing critical IT infrastructure in remote locations, 24/7 connectivity is a business necessity. But connectivity can be impacted by many things, from weather events, to configuration failures, to human error, or even distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks. Whatever the cause, an unplanned outage that disrupts the ability to manage and run a business is costly. Out-of-band management is a requirement for every network manager’s toolkit.
Managing your device network is one thing when the network is up, but requires an out-of-band (OOB) management strategy in the event of network disruptions. Digi Remote Manager lets you remotely and securely access devices OOB, via console access. Network administrators have serial connection access through a combination of Digi RM's business-level service and cellular products running the Digi Accelerated Linux (DAL) operating system.