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Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) for MIB

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Published: Thu, 08 Feb 2018

SNMP

Abstract:

SNMP or Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) is an application layer protocol that provides the exchange of management information between network devices. SNMP is a part of the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) protocol suite. Through this research the emergency of network management will be managed for fire alarm, power off.

Managing devices such as computers is vital and tracking for its safe and emergency issues will assist in many aspects such as identifying location, solving communication issues etc. In this research we will propose a SMNP based solution for effectively managing computer devices. In this research we will propose a MIB [Management Information Base] using ASN1.0 specification and also proposing a prototype on the implementation. Then based on our proposed prpotype we will evaluate.

ASN for the proposed MIB has been designed as part of this research but it could not be implemented with real time implementation due to lack of resource for SNMP based developemnt.

Aim:

Propose a solution for SNMP based Emergency management for an organization

Objectives:

  • Research on network management using SNMP.
  • Proposing an MIB Tree for the emergency network management
  • Critically evaluating the proposed solution for SNMP based emergency network management.

Introduction

Network management is managing and maintaining different components and its functioning in a network. Network should be managed in an efficient way for avoiding different attacks. Several protocols are used for managing network. Management plays a vital role for monitoring the state of the network and analyses the performance. Among such protocols Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) is one which is used for monitoring the network. The main purpose of this protocol is designed for maintaining devices in network in internet protocols (IP). The network management performance can be used for transporting network information and its elements functioning (Stephen F. Bush and Amit B Kulkarni, 2001). SNMP in networks provides reliable and integrated network management. Several attacks may occur in network, for analyzing networks should be managed in an efficient way. The SNMP manages the network with the usage of different commands to the network and is useful in different networks. There are several architectures for SNMP which is used depending upon the network mechanisms. It performs several operations in network for managing different components in the network. For performing all these operations SNMP uses Management Information Base (MIB) for handling components in the network. In this project SNMP and its performance in network is analyzed with the help of case study approach. The emergency preparedness is important part in network management and is equal to other maintenance works. One of the problems in network is traffic (German Goldszmidt and Jurgen Schonwalder, 2003). Sometimes the flow of data is more in network which causes traffic in network. In order to avoid traffic limited number of data should be transmitted in the network. Another problem that occurs in networks is security. Sometimes intruders may involve in network which leads to loss of data, in order to avoid this SNMP protocol performs several operations. For identifying network problems with SNMP components in network uses Management Information Base. Manager plays major role in managing the network. SNMP emergency services are very much helpful for the managing the network. This project uses emergency management of SNMP in order to solve problems that occur in networks (Geln E. Clarke, 2005). Hence from above context it can be concluded that SNMP is one of the protocol which helps in managing the network. Several problems may occur in network like traffic and security to the data. SNMP emergency management helps in managing the networks by performing different operations.

Research Problem

The network management protocols identify the communication between the network management server programs that are executing on the router or host, and the network management client program invoked by the manager. Considering these factors, it can be expected that the network management protocols contains numerous commands (Douglas Comer, 2006). The major disadvantage of constructing the network management protocols is the resulting complexity because this protocol needs an individual command for every operation on the data item. The Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) is useful in such types of cases. SNMP makes an interesting approach to network management. In place of defining the large command set, SNMP directs all the operations in a fetch-store paradigm. SNMP makes use of only two commands which allow the manager to store values into the data item and get the value from the data item. Other operations are described as the side-effects of the two operations. The main advantage of using the fetch-store paradigm is simplicity, flexibility and stability. SNMP is stable as its meaning remains fixed. SNMP is also easy to understand, debug and implement as it evades the difficulties of using special cases for every command. Finally the SNMP is flexible as it can contain the arbitrary commands in a well-designed framework (Douglas Comer, 2006).

Problem Context: Importance of emergency in SNMP

In the present scenarios of the Simple Network Management protocol, there are numerous of conditional factors that involves in defining the perspectives of the response in emergency SNMP (Amjad Umar, 2003). The emergency response can be used as a tool guide to the proposed scheme. The situation of the emergency can be found in the several areas of the networking management. The state of emergency can be found in many context such as market demand, failure in the key resources, shortage in the areas of the supply, in the same way there is a need of the emergency can be found in the areas of the political sciences and public administration. As in the same way in this research the point to be focused on is the emergency response of the Simple Network Management Protocols (Harold F. Tipton and Micki Krause, 2004). The factor that contributes to the difficulty in the emergency are lack of flexibility in making decision, lack of available resources, lack of response in option, failure in communicating and cascading the events. To overcome these whole problems in the SNMP emergency, it must have to develop the outstanding plans that can be used for giving the training on the extensive simulation of the Emergency Response. Most of the organizations get failure only because of the one reason that is managing the emergency situations (Rob Cameron, Neil R. Wyler, Trent Fausett, Kevin Fletcher, Patrick Foxhoven and Mark J. Lucas, 2007). If the emergency situations in an organization are maintained in a superior approach then it may lead to loss in the communication, information and essential data. Hence a proper management system is required for organizing the emergency situations in Simple Network Management protocol. This protocol is used to reduce the traffic when a emergency situation is occur in the network, then the preventive measures that has to be taken are recovery, preventives in the system, improving the communication scheme, performance and work on the basis of the propriety.

Research Method:

Case study is one of the best methods for researchers; these are effectively used by the people to understand the contest of the study. It is less complexity and adds strength to the data which is used in the research. The steps that is followed in this case study are

* Determine the theme of the research

* Select the cases and analysis the techniques for gathering the data

* Preparation for the collection

* Collection of the data according to the field

* Estimate and analyze that data

* Preparation of the report

This study is to manage the emergency in Simple Network Management protocol. The organization that involves in the SNMP managements standards, that provides the major introduction to the organization management. There are several conditions that have an impact on the areas like co-operation and trading (Bill Gillham, 2000). To develop the management system in the SNMP is based on the information and communication. This includes the problems, listing the questions, describing the method that involve in the research. The key features of the report includes the detail of the Simple Network Management Protocols in the management information of specific data that relates to the successes or disappointments experienced by the organizations that were conveyed during data collection and answers or comments illuminating issues directly related to the research questions (Ben Beiske, 2007). The researcher develops each issue using quotations or other details from the data that is collected, and points out the uses of data where it is applicable. The data also includes the confirming and conflicting findings from literature reviews. The report conclusion makes assertions and suggestions for further research activity, so that another may apply these techniques to another electronic community, network and its management to determine whether similar findings are particularly to in communities that belongs to the network (George L. Dunbar, 2005). Final report distribution includes all participants. Within the case study it has been analyzed at the first time whether the technique used with each non-profit organization under study. The assigned investigator studies each organizations written documentation and survey response data as a separate case to identify unique patterns within the data for the single organization. A detailed case study that is, written ups for each organizing management, categorizing interview questions and answers and examining the data for within group similarities and differences. Cross case analysis follows. Investigators examine pairs of cases, categorizing the similarities and differences in each pair (Kathleen Stassen Berger, 2004). Investigators then examine similar pairs for differences, and dissimilar pairs for similarities. As patterns begin to emerge, certain evidence that may stand out as being in conflict with the patterns. In those cases, the investigator conducts follow-up focused interviews to confirm or correct the initial data in order to tie the evidence to the findings and to state relationships in answer to the research questions.

Chapters Summary:

In summary, here there is a discussion about the case studies in terms of the different types of case studies which is found in the literature. The case studies are considered to be useful in research as it enable researchers to examine data at the fine level. It is an alternative to quantitative or qualitative research, case studies is a practical solution to when a big sample population is difficult to obtain. Although the case studies have a variety of advantages, so it is used for data management for having the better situations and it provide a better insights for the document in detail to which the subjects of Interest is related. Case study method has always been criticized for its lack of severity and the tendency for a researcher. It is the base for establishing reliability and generality in subjected to uncertainty when a small sampling is deployed. Some case study research is dismissed as useful only as an exploratory tool. Hence as the case study have various advantages over the qualitative or the quantitative researches. So it is used in this research.

Summary of chapters:

Chapter 2 includes the Literature review for the related research work.

Chapter 3 discusses the analysis of problem requirements which is providing a solution for managing or developing emergency based system.

We have used SNMP and MIB based approach to provide the design of the emergency based provision.

We will be using MIB tree and ASN based design and development for this.

Chapter 4 includes the development and data collection which will be obtained through SNMP Query for Firealarm and Power off.

Chapter 5 covers the analysis and evaluationof results or test data,

This has the effectiveness of the research and proposed solution for emergency.

Chapter 2: Literature Review

2.1 Network Management

Network Management is a service which employs different applications, tools and devices to assist the network managers in maintaining and monitoring networks. Hence the meaning of Network Management is different for different users. For example in certain cases the network management involves a single network advisor monitoring the network activity by utilizing an obsolete protocol analyzer. In other cases the network management involves auto polling, distributed database and high end workstations producing real time network topology traffic and changes (Network Management n.d).

Architecture of Network Management

Many of the network management architectures use similar set of elements, structure and relationships. The managed devices or end devices like the computer systems and network devices run the basic software which allows them in producing alerts when problems are recognized. For instance consider the exceeded user determined thresholds. The alerts received are programmed by the management entities to respond by executing one, group of actions like operator notification, system shut down, automatic attempts and event logging by system repair.

Even the entities of the management can be polled for end stations to verify the values of definite variables (Network Management n.d).

The polling can be user initiated or automatic but the agents of managed devices react to all polls. These agents are the software modules which first compile information regarding managed devices in which they reside. Later the information is stored in management database and is finally produced to the management entities reactively or proactively of the network management systems (NMSs) through a protocol of network management. The network management protocols include Common Management Information Protocol (CMIP) and Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). Figure 1 represents basic network management architecture (Network Management n.d).

Sampling Techniques

Network Management involves the status information of queue occupancy, latency, load and other parameters which is available from devices like switches, networking interfaces and routers. This information of the network management is accessed by the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) (Edwin A. Hernandez, Matthew C. Chidester, and Alan D. George, 2000). The Network Management Station (NMS) of the SNMP queries the agents or network devices to evaluate the status of the network links or devices periodically. The accuracy of the data measured is determined by period of sampling. A transient activity cannot be detected accurately if the sampling interval is large and a greater storage capacity is required at the NMS as small intervals consume larger bandwidths on the network. For instance, a burst of major action with few seconds is probable to be undetected with sampling interval of some minutes. To balance the accuracy with sampling several sampling techniques have been practical to the managers of network. Some of these sampling techniques are:

SNMP Architecture:

Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) is the network protocol which is used in network management systems. This protocol is designed to administer the devices on an Internet Protocol (IP) network. It collects the information from different network devices such as routers, servers, hubs on an internet protocol. It is used for managing complex networks.

The SNMP architecture consists of different set of components such as network management system and the SNMP agent and the managed device. The managed device is also known as the network elements. It is connected to the data network. The SNMP agent collects the data from the managed device and transforms it to another format using SNMP. This agent acts as a server, switch, hub and many others. The NMS is the one of the module of the SNMP which basically executes the applications which can manage and control the managed devices like physical devices such as routers, network interfaces and software. They manage the remote monitoring of these managed components and do the sampling. Then after do the analysis of the collected information and finally gives the presentation of the information (Steven Karris T, 2004). All the devices in the architecture are referred as managed devices. The managed device in the architecture acts as an SNMP agent which facilitates the network management system to recover the status of managed device. All the available information of the managed devices is been addressed through management information base (MIB). There are two types of MIB’s. They are scalar and tabular. The scalar object of MIB’s denotes the single object instances and the tabular objects of MIB’s define the multiple object instances. If the network management system recognizes which device to be managed in MIB then it changes the MIB objects with the relevant requests to the agent of SNMP. The information of MIB is loaded into the network management system with the help of MIB file. The network management system acts as the master device where as the managed device and the SNMP agent acts as a slave device. It provides security by preventing unauthorized users to gain access on the system. This security is performed with the help of community string. This string acts as the password and groups the data either to read-only or read-write areas (Thomas Porter, 2006). The application server of the SNMP agent is designed to run the specific applications. The SNMP agents and the network management systems communicate each other with different set of operations such as read, write and trap. The NMS requests the SNMP agent through read operation and it sends the information through write operation. The notifications are sent from SNMP agent to NMS through trap operation. Hence from the above context it is understood that SNMP is used in many applications. It is implemented in many operating systems. The storage network of the SNMP architecture consists of switch and the hub which acts as the interface between the components. All the devices such as managed devices, MIB are connected only through storage network. Tape library contains more than one tape drives which stores bulk amount of data. It acts as a SNMP agent. The SNMP agent translates the whole information. Different SNMP versions are derived to increase the performance of the system.

SNMP ahs the followings:

Network Element: if any tool connects to the network then that tool can be called as network element. Some of the tools like gateways, hosts, terminal servers, servers, switches, firewalls, and active hubs.

Management station: this station includes a platform which contains software in SNMP that manages and controls the network elements.

SNMP agent: it is a software management agent which is responsible for executing the functions in the network management after receiving the messages from the management station.

SNMP request: a message which travels from management station to SNMP agent in the network device.

SNMP trap receiver: it even receives the notification messages from SNMP agent on network devices.

Management information base: it is a method which identifies the elements in SNMP database.

SNMP Architecture

Simple Network Management Protocol is very popular not only because of its simple operation but also due to easy of usage. This protocol is very useful for manufacturers and seller as it is easy to use SNMP technology for the manufacturers while adding network management functions to their products (Kerrie Meyler, Cameron Fuller, John Joyner & Andy, 2008).

Components of the SNMP Architecture:

The SNMP architecture mainly contains two components, managers and agents, apart from standards which are used for controlling the interactions between components. By using SNMP commands, these managers and agents communicate with each other. These commands are explained in RFC 1157. Here, the managers organize the functioning of agents. The agents provide the data to the managers by interacting with the devices like routers and computers. These devices are also known as managed devices (Ramadas Shanmugam, R. Padmini & S.Nivedita, 2002). The protocol used for communication between manager and agent is referred as SNMP. Generally, the SNMP managed network consists of three components; they are (Deon Reynders &Edwin Wright, 2003):

* Managed devices.

* Agents.

* Network-management systems (NMSs).

Managed devices: It is a network node which includes SNMP agent which exists in a managed network. These devices gather and store the management information. By using SNMP, managed devices enable the management information to network-management systems (NMSs). It also responsible for querying the agents by using SNMP commands. Managed devices can also be known as network elements, these can be any type of devices like routers, switches, hubs, access servers, bridges, IP telephones, printers, or computer hosts (Gilbert Held, 2003).

Agent: It is a network-management software module which exists in managed devices. Agent software represents one or more program modules which operate within the managed devices like bridge, router, workstation or gateway. Each of the managed agent stores information and provides these information to the manager after receiving the request from the manager. It translates the management information into a well-suited form with SNMP (Deon Reynders &Edwin Wright, 2003).

Network-managed systems (NMSs): This system performs applications that examine the managed devices. It provides a large amount of memory resources for network management. In any managed network, there should one or more number of NMSs (Gilbert Held, 2003).

SNMP operations

SNMP reads or writes the values in applications from SNMP devices. There are four basic SNMP operations, they are Get, Get-next, Set and Trap. Get and Set are the basic operations which are mostly used for reading and writing data to a node which are identified by a specific OID. It also requests the values of one or more SNMP objects and sets the values of SNMP object. Get-next reads the content of the tables at a time and steps through MIB hierarchy.

Trap is an asynchronous notification from server (agent) to client (manager) which reports the occurrence of an interesting event. It sends the information in the form of packet to SNMP (Evi Nemeth, Garth Snyder & Trent R. Hein, 2006).

Basic commands of SNMP

Commands are explained in RFCs, there are many RFCs which relate to SNMP components. The importance of these RFCs is it describes the operation of the protocols. Generally, there exists three RFCs; they are RFC 1155, RFC 1157 and RFC 1213. RFC 1155 used for Structure of Management information (SMI), it explains about the data types and structure that should be used for managed objects. RFC 1157 is used for Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP), it describes protocol and operation of SNMP. RFC 1213 is used in Management Information Base (MIB) (Philip Miller, 1997).

By using four basic commands in SNMP, managed devices are monitored and controlled. They are namely read, write, trap, and travel operations (Deon Reynders &Edwin Wright, 2003).

Read command – it is used by NMSs, in order to monitor the managed devices. NMS inspect various variables which are maintained by managed devices.

Write command – to control managed devices, these commands are used by NMS. The variables in the managed devices are changed by NMS.

Trap command- these commands are utilized by the managed devices to asynchronously report the result to the NMS. Whenever there are certain results in the managed devices, then managed devices send rap to NMS (Deon Reynders &Edwin Wright, 2003).

Transversal operations- NMS make use of these operations to identify the variables which supports managed device and also collects the data in variable tables like routing table.

SNMP Network Management

Managing a network is very difficult task for any administrator as it deals with huge number of nodes and protocols. The best way to keep track of all the nodes that exists in a network is to identify and implement an effective protocol which can allow a user to read or write a particular piece of information. SNMP is one of the network management protocol preferred by most of the network administrators in organizations. SNMP can be available with three versions; each has enhanced features when compared with its previous versions. SNMPv3 can offer high security features while managing organizational network. A network manager in an organization has to play a key role in managing the networks. Using of SNMP for network management can be advantageous as it can solve most of the problems that exists in a network (Sebastian Abeck and Adrian Farrel, 2008). Thus, performance of network mostly depends on the network protocols used by the administrator.

Network management using SNMP protocols can be identified as a request/reply process. SNMP makes use of request messages like GET and SET while managing a network. Through GET request a SNMP server can retrieve the required information from a node where as SET request can stores specific information on a node. SNMP servers mostly use GET requests in order to manage a network. SNMP implementation efficiency largely depends on these requests and replies from the nodes or servers (Dinesh Chandra Verma, 2009). A network administrator has to recognize the network details before implementing SNMP protocols. Client programs in networks can be utilized by network administrators in order to display the actual details of a network. While displaying network details a client program acts like an interface. When a user or administrator wants to access specific information, a request must be sent to the server. For sending request to particular node, a client program makes use of SNMP protocols. Requests from the users will be received by SNMP servers running on the specified node. SNMP server processes these requests and finds the information required for a user. Finally a client program will display the information based on the response received from SNMP servers. The major aspects that has to be understood in SNMP network management is, how a user can specify the information request and how a server recognizes the required information (Larry L. Peterson and Bruce S. Davie, 2007). SNMP makes use of Management Information Base (MIB) for retrieving the required information. MIB performs the function of identifying information from SNMP databases. As SNMP uses MIB, a particular syntax for the requests has to be specified. For implementing SNMP with MIB’s a standard specification like ASN.1 can be used. A SNMP client agent keeps an ASN. 1 identifier in MIB, SNMP server searches the required information based on the identifier specified by the client. For managing a network SNMP makes use of various network components. Every SNMP agent will interact with MIB’s and Network Management Systems while managing a network (Monique Morrow and Kateel Vijayananda, 2003). Hence from the above discussion it can be understood that, SNMP operates in client/ server mode which establishes virtual connections with the servers to provide information to the Network Management Systems (NMS). The information provided to NMS can provide the devices status at a particular time. MIB in SNMP refers to the databases controlled by SNMP agents and SNMP servers retrieve the information based on MIB’s in networks. Network management through SNMP can be an effective and most used method in present organizational networking environments. Many large organizations use SNMP tools for managing their networks effectively.

Why SNMP

SNMP is defined as simple network management protocol. Network management system will make use of SNMP for communicating with various network objects. SNMP is mostly used for the remote management of network device. SNMP is widely used because it easy to use and user can easily add the network management functions to their new or existing products. SNMP runs on various devices like network tools, core network devices and office network tools (Ray Rankins, Paul Jensen and Paul Bertucci, 2002). SNMP allow network and system administrator to access network devices that are present in their networks such as server, routers etc. SNMP for the management of network device contains one SNMP station and management station. Management station is mainly utilized to arrange the network elements and to receive the SNMP traps from those elements. By making use of SNMP, network monitor can observe changes and alerts that are identified in the network elements. If the size of network is increased then method called management is required. In SNMP errors obtained are varies from one agent to other agent but will include system failure, disk warning etc (Harold F. Tipton and Micki Krause, 2004). If the device passes an alert to the management station then network management itself involves in rectifying the problem. Time to time configuration request should be send to the device. If provided string is correct then automatically configuration of the device will change according to the requirement. Organizations can identify the status of all equipments and can also perform remote trouble shooting. SNMP is nothing but a protocol that is used to develop and manage nodes that are present in the network system. SNMP allows system administrator to work on the problems that are executed in the network and should plan for the growth of network. Network management service will identify the changes that are done in the network devices based SNMP (Douglas R. Mauro and Kevin James Schmidt, 2005). SNMP consists of three features; they are managed device, agents and network management system. Managed device is usually a network node. It contains SNMP agent that is located on a managed network. Management data that is gathered and stored will be available to network management system of SNMP. Managed devices can also be called as network elements. An agent is nothing but network management module software module which is present in the management device. This device has great knowledge on local management information and this information can ne transferred to SNMP. NMS usually carry out applications that can manage and control the managed device. Hence from the above discussion it is identified that SNMP is a protocol which can help in managing the networks.

Why MIB

Management Information Base (MIB) is an essential component for handling a network. The importance of MIB increased as it comprises data definitions for managed objects. For managing the networks through SNMP protocol, an information base is necessary. The information base must allow a user to retrieve required data. MIB provides the facility of managing databases in SNMP agents. Managed object instances stored in MIB’s will be exchanged between SNMP agents and managers (Stephen B. Morris, 2003). Thus, MIB is necessary for managing the information while implementing SNMP protocol in networks. Managed objects in MIB will be specified with a unique identifier, a user has to send request regarding information by following a particular syntax. MIB in SNMP also helps in recognizing the present status of a network device. Identifying the network information in case of small networks can be done very easily as the host names and IP addresses can be available to the users directly. But in large networks, a MIB


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