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Secure rack management

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article image Enables the secure integration of servers.

CYCLADES Corporation has introduced the industry's first service processor manager for out-of-band management of servers, the AlterPath OnBoard.

The AlterPath OnBoard with Secure Rack Management (SRM - patent pending) consolidates and securely manages the myriad of service processor technologies available in today's next-generation servers.

The device delivers SRM by isolating and protecting the connected servers from the production network to provide secure, efficient rack-level management with seamless integration into the Out-of-Band Infrastructure (OOBI).

Next-generation servers contain a service processor, separate from the main processor, which provides remote access to power control, sensor readings and in some cases server configuration, monitoring and remote keyboard and mouse control.

Service processors have been widely deployed in enterprises of all sizes, however, many are currently under-utilised because of the costs and lack of management, says Cyclades.

While many enterprises are unaware of the potential power of service processors, others are simply encumbered by compatibility issues caused by numerous proprietary as well as open source technologies.

According to estimates from leading server manufacturers Dell, Hewlett-Packard, IBM and Sun Microsystems, approximately nine million service processors exist in the market today, yet only 1.4 million are being used to their fullest potential.

"By providing secure access to the embedded service processors across all vendor technologies including the IPMI open standard, the AlterPath OnBoard allows users to take advantage of this key resource within the server," said Dennis Drogseth, vice president, Enterprise Management Associates. "In addition, with the OnBoard's advanced user interface, all service processor types can be efficiently managed."

The AlterPath OnBoard combines hardware and software into an appliance designed to act as a protocol gateway and enable the secure integration of servers so they can be operated in a consistent manner, regardless of protocol type.

The AlterPath OnBoard physically consolidates and logically secures the Ethernet connections needed for access to service processors embedded in servers and blade servers offered by all major system vendors, including Dell, Hewlett-Packard, IBM and Sun Microsystems.

With the AlterPath OnBoard, system administrators can locally or remotely perform operations such as power cycle, remote console access, hardware monitoring and management and event management across servers using one simplified user interface.

The AlterPath OnBoard represents significant cost savings in terms of provisioning, deployment and the recurring costs and overhead associated with maintaining and securing IP addresses for each service processor.

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