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Network Management FAQ

What role does Network Management play in my Organization?

Network management refers to the activities, methods, procedures, and tools that pertain to the operation, administration, maintenance, and provisioning of your networked systems.

What kinds of functions are performed as part of network management?

Functions that are performed as part of network management include:

How can a modern alarm monitoring system enhance my network management infrastructure?

Deploying an effective alarm solution is a crucial component in protecting your valuable resources. A high-quality alarm solution can improve the quality of your network management by:

What other benefits can I obtain by using an integrated Remote Alarm System?

Using an integrated remote alarm system for all your monitoring applications will:

What kind of alarm monitoring solution should I look for to enhance my network management system?

Your first step to get your alarm monitoring system rolling is to conduct a complete survey of your current network and remote sites. This survey will document your existing alarm monitoring situation, in order to build a road map for your future network management. Here are some questions that will help you start your network-monitoring inventory:

  1. How many remote sites need to be monitored?
  2. What is the protocol and transport of the RTUs you're currently using?
  3. How many alarm points will your network alarm system monitor in the next 5-10 years?
  4. What dedicated facilities do you already have in place to transport RTU data?
  5. How many ASCII devices (e.g., switches, routers, etc.) will you monitor at your remote sites?
  6. What type of power do you have at the master and remote sites?
  7. Do you want to receive alarm notifications via email or pager?

What are some essential features I should look for when choosing an RTU?

Here is a useful list of important features that you should look for in a quality RTU.

How important is it to have one alarm master that can support all the network management protocols that my equipment uses?

You probably have several different types of transport equipment to monitor, and you may have several generations of legacy alarm monitoring equipment as well. All these different types of equipment report alarms using different incompatible protocols. You definitely want to have one alarm master that can support all the monitoring protocols your equipment uses and display all your alarms on one screen. Trying to monitor by watching two or more screens is hard work that confuses even the best system operators, and sooner or later someone will miss a major alarm.

What kind of capability expansion should I be looking at when choosing a Network management alarm master?

An alarm system is a long-term investment that will last for as long as 10 to 15 years. You need an alarm master system that will support your future growth for up to 15 years. In that time your network is going to grow in size, you're going to add new kinds of equipment, and you're going to need new alarm monitoring capabilities. Make sure your alarm master can grow and change with your network.

What kind of Network management user security does a high-quality alarm master offer?

An excellent alarm solution has built-in features for managing user permissions. Individual user security profiles limit what alarms may be viewed, which alarms may be acknowledged, which controls and system commands may be issued, and what modifications may be made to the system configuration.

How important is alarm data transport in my network management system?

Alarm data transport is a very important factor to take into consideration when deciding upon an RTU.

There are two things you should keep in mind about alarm data transport:

  1. As much as possible, you want to work with transports that are already available in your network management system. You don't want to create added expenses by committing yourself to installing new network infrastructure. It's best to choose an alarm system that is compatible with the transports you already have.
  2. It's a good idea to have a secondary backup path for your alarm data in case your primary path fails. No transport is 100% reliable, and you don't want to lose alarm visibility of your revenue-generating network under any circumstances.
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