Eliminate the Time Suck that Is Edge Location Troubleshooting and Gain Surety of Edge Security

Howard Blevins • August 23, 2019

If you’ve ever been without a lunch and start experiencing hunger pains as you wrap up the late-morning meeting that is just one in the series of commitments filling your day, and then discover that your lengthy noon meeting was just cancelled, you know the sense of relief that time freedom (and a Taco Bell run) can provide. 

Yet, as an IT manager, this is the type of time crunch you are likely trying to navigate on a regular basis. Supporting the ever-increasing global demand for data has led to the proliferation of edge computing networks expanding across geographies and challenging IT teams.

Whether you manage a team within a government organization, a distributed business with multiple locations, or an enterprise/hyperscale/colocation data center, effective time management is a challenge often compounded by limited resources. Finding time for priority projects (or a Chili Cheese Burrito) is essential to business continuity and success. 

Fortunately, there are infrastructure solutions that eliminate the time wasted by your IT personnel when troubleshooting edge locations. With the right solutions, your team will no longer need to drive from site to site to power down servers, or to perform simple troubleshooting or other routine actions.

Serial consoles allow IT teams to securely manage in-band and out-of-band network devices remotely, which not only saves on travel time, but also minimizes the need for personnel to physically access your IT facilities or edge locations, creating a security risk. Serial consoles can also effectively function as security aggregators, providing one access point to manage user access and privileges.

“It’s as if you are standing in front of the device with a keyboard and monitor,” said Craig Pennington, vice president of European operations for NTT Europe Online. “It’s immediate and that greatly improves our response time to get onto a server and troubleshoot issues. Instead of having to create a ticket, gather as much information as we can, and then pass it on to an on-site data center technician, we can take care of it centrally in minutes.”

The Vertiv™ Avocent® ACS 800 serial console enables this type of centralized management by connecting to your infrastructure support equipment including rack power distribution units (rPDUs), single-phase uninterruptible power supply (UPS) systems, or any serial-based products that you may connect using the four available USB ports. The console ultimately gives you access and control via a single, consolidated view. With this dashboard you can easily see errors and issues that require attention and even cycle equipment on and off without leaving your office.

 

Reduce Security Risks Even with Network Growth

Couple the Internet of Things (IoT) with Gartner predicting nearly 21 billion connected devices by 2020, and it’s no secret that businesses are becoming more digital and adopting new business models that could create critical system vulnerabilities. Every device that connects to your network is a possible access point for well-intentioned or malicious activity. 

Adding to this vulnerability is the continued strain on human resources. The IT teams tasked with managing these devices are not growing. In fact, the recent Data Center 2025: Closer to the Edge report shows a potential loss of 16 percent of  data center industry staff to retirement over the next six years. Again, the right type of serial console can help ease this burden by allowing centralized device management.

The zero-touch provisioning (ZTP) capability of the Avocent® ACS 800 allows your IT team to provision devices, update firmware, and implement custom configurations easily, incrementally, and completely automatically. This console server lets you deter malicious activity and safeguard your network by maintaining the most up-to-date firmware across your infrastructure.

 

Maintain Connectivity Even with a Down Network

Network problems aren’t always due to a cyberattack; human error is the most common cause of downtime. A simple misconfiguration can render your network inaccessible. To deal with this type of issue, highly available networks rely on IT management solutions such as the Avocent® ACS 800 that allow device access anytime, from anywhere, even if the connected network has failed.

Vertiv recognized this critical need when designing the Avocent® ACS 800, which allows you to view and maintain your equipment’s status from anywhere in the world by connecting an optional external 4G LTE cellular router.

The Avocent® ACS 800 can provide remote access to connected systems through production or maintenance networks via telephone (POTS) and provides optional wireless access via a 3G/4G LTE modem. In other words, with the right serial console, you have the tools to access your network, wherever and whenever.

 

Choose Wisely to Take the Trouble out of Troubleshooting

The complexity of today’s data center topologies and the industry trends that are intensifying the pressure already placed on IT teams can make securing and managing your network devices in data centers, network closets, and edge locations quite challenging. Fortunately as an IT manager, you have the ability to maintain uptime through smart infrastructure choices like the Avocent® ACS 800 serial console.

Having in-band and out-of-band network remote management capabilities enables centralized, secure, and timely troubleshooting that can minimize the operational inefficiencies of your IT personnel, giving them back the time needed to focus on more important business priorities or to pick up a Taco Party Pack for the team!

 

Learn more about this and other serial console solutions at Vertiv.com or get it now by calling 1-866-277-1924.

  

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