When you need to be able to monitor different sources of input and output that are being run on a central computer system, it is pretty likely you will need a console manager. This nifty little device allows you to gain access to important server features and systems from an out-of-hub location if you do not have the ability to get onto the main terminal. With the increase in popularity of such management tools, there are a number of additions to the basic features that have become more and more popular.

A ping response monitor is one such element that information technology managers have come to expect. When you have out of band updates or maintenance, it is crucial to know how the diagnostics and specifications of a console or a server are operating. This information may be readily available if you are tapped into the system, but for those without such connections on hand, it is necessary to get a sense of how the server’s performance is going. Ping response determines the response rate and any failures running along a device incorporated in the network. The command is sent and a fraction of a second later it is received: this time of latency is enough to provide a wealth of information on the system.

Another core feature of a quality console manager is temperature management and climate control. This seems rather out of place to some — isn’t the building itself supposed to be designed for ideal heating and cooling — but may be more important for the health and longevity of your server than anything else. As the fluctuation of heat rises and falls during the course of a normal day, the temperature management system automatically works to notify IT personnel about the needs of the computer and the ideal situation. This keeps everything cool and working smoothly.

Security is integral to any company, let alone information technology, and authentication protocols keep anyone from gaining access to restricted information. No matter what is on file in a server — whether it is customer information or financial records — it needs to stay there until the proper authority takes it out. Protocols for authentication keep documents and data from being pilfered, modified, or deleted, and keep a company secure from internal harm.

A final tool to be used in tandem with a console manager switch or function that has gained popularity is a multi-level directory. This differentiates between users with different clearances or functions so that the machine does not have to re-boot or re-configure each time. Multi-level functions allow for usage of a server from the same terminal without worrying that a person is accessing incorrect data or information that should be unavailable.

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