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SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol)

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SNMP is a popular management environment and network protocol. It was defined by the Internet community for TCP/IP networks. The IETF refers to SNMP as the "Internet-standard Management Framework" or, simply, the "Framework." The term "framework" is important because, as mentioned, SNMP defines both a protocol and an architecture for managing networks. The framework is also used when building network management applications or management devices.

SNMPv1 was originally defined in RFC 1067 (A Simple Network Management Protocol, August 1988) although it was based on an earlier protocol defined in RFC 1028 (A Simple Gateway Monitoring Protocol, November 1987). Note that SNMPv1 is now defined in the updated RFC 1157 (A Simple Network Management Protocol, May 1990). Work was started on SNMPv2 in the early 1990s. A primary goal was to improve security, add new management features, and make information retrieval more efficient. But SNMPv2 development fell into chaos and the IETF disbanded it, only to have it resurface as SNMPv3. SNMPv3 includes many of the original goals of SNMPv2.

One of the best documents for SNMP is RFC 2570 (Introduction to Version 3 of the Internet- Standard Network Management Framework, April 1999). It provides an introduction to the latest version, as well as a list of relevant RFCs for each SNMP version.

An alternative management model is WBEM (Web-Based Enterprise Management), which takes advantage of Web technologies. WBEM is designed to complement existing management standards such as SNMP and DMI (Distributed Management Interface). It uses CIM (Common Information Model) as its inventory model and XML to package information for transfer from one place to another. XML has many advantages in the management environment. See "WBEM (Web-Based Enterprise Management)."

Copyright (c) 2001 Tom Sheldon and Big Sur Multimedia.
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