In-Band and Out-of-Band

By combining in-band and out-of-band management in a single solution, netPrefect™ enables your business to significantly increase the availability, quality and security of the services you deliver.

netPrefect™ uses a combination of in-band and out-of-band management to provide comprehensive monitoring and reporting on all devices across the network, through local or remote connections.

In-Band management uses the same communications channels that the devices themselves support. All networking equipment such as switches, routers, network appliances and servers can be managed in-band using SNMP protocols.

In-Band devices supported include any device that supports SNMP V1 or V2c.

Out-of-Band management is an alternative means of accessing remote devices when, for example, the in-band communications channel is down, thus providing an always-available, back-up management solution. In addition, some devices based on older technology cannot be managed with in-band solutions - for these devices, out-of-band management that communicates with the device directly through its console (RS232) port is the only answer.

Out-of-Band devices supported include (but are not limited to):

  • OpenVMS
  • Linux
  • UNIX (most)
  • WindowsNT - through use of agent software, which allows NT to be managed through its RS232/serial or TCP/IP ports
  • Routers and other networking hardware with RS232/serial port management
  • PABX systems with RS232/serial port control or monitoring
  • Environmental Control systems which have RS232/serial port management
  • Any other hardware which can be controlled through a serial port

Other Out-of-Band mechanisms include the use of dedicated management cards installed within the server chassis, or integrated on the server motherboard. Examples of this include:

  • HP iLO
  • Dell DRAC
  • IBM Remote Supervisor Adapter
  • Sun SSP

In addition, open standards are available for remote management and some other manufacturers support these, such as Supermicro and its extensive support of the IPMI standard for platform management on its motherboards and servers.

The advantage of using these cards and standards for server management is that they offer a separate distinct network interface to the server. This has several advantages:

  • management traffic does not impact the services that the server is providing to your business, by taking network bandwidth away from it
  • management cards operate independently of the operating system installed and running on the server, which allows remote recovery in the event of operating system hang or crash
  • by placing the management card network adapter on a separate network (either physically or by use of LAN techniques), enhanced security of the management infrastructure is obtained.

netPrefect™ currently supports HP iLO using the RIBCL command language. This allows interrogation of the iLO for system status, such as fan status, system temperature, etc. as well as giving the ability to power on or off the system.

We are constantly evaluating support for other remote management cards and are driven by customer demand when developing new features. If you want to purchase netPrefect™, but would like use a management card we don't currently support, contact us and let's talk about it.