Edge computing can reduce the compute load on a data center infrastructure by moving data and compute to the edge. However, such devices add complexity to an organization’s IT system, as staff must learn how to deploy, secure, and maintain them. Consider the different software management options for edge devices.
As the management of edge computing devices becomes increasingly difficult for IT professionals, many organizations are turning to applications and software platforms to manage their assets, data, and power. peripheral devices.
Some edge device management tools are part of data center infrastructure management tools, and cloud or Internet of Things (IoT) management tools provide additional edge management capabilities. With so many tools available to data center professionals, consider the specific functionality of a tool and your business budget before deciding which tool is best for your organization.
Edge Computing Management Features
Edge computing can mean many different things to IT professionals, but for data center administrators, it typically means centralizing IT infrastructure in an orderly, sustainable, and limited fashion. A peripheral environment must be centrally managed, live in a without intervention environment and interface transparently with existing methods and processes.
Important management features that you should consider for your advanced computing needs include:
- Integration into existing monitoring software tools. Your network monitoring and management software should easily integrate edge devices. Make sure that you can provision, deploy, and manage all devices within your existing software environment, or that you can get new applications for them.
- Communication and bandwidth monitoring. Most high-power computing happens in data centers, but edge computing shifts some of that power to the edge. This can increase bandwidth usage in both directions, and the network as a whole. Make sure your network is ready to handle this.
- Latency monitoring. Edge computing monitoring software should detect latency changes in real time. Understanding which devices need low latency and which can handle higher latency can be essential for some devices.
- Power monitoring. Power monitoring of edge devices is especially critical for devices located in remote or inaccessible locations.
- Data storage. Edge devices should only store the data they need for their functions and nothing more. Your organization needs to create or have a process to move data from its edge devices, these devices calculate or use this data to reduce the load. Moving this data also makes it available to larger processing systems elsewhere in your network which can use it to glean additional information.
- Security. Due to their function in the network, your organization should include devices in each security policy in the front. Hackers can target devices that host high-value data, so you need to have a plan to protect them.
- Automating. Edge devices or edge monitoring software should include automation features to help IT staff perform monitoring and maintenance activities. For example, automated processes can regularly move data from one device to a central database, provide resources to devices, or register devices.
- Backup and disaster recovery. Make sure that your current disaster recovery and backup processes take into account the edge devices in your network. Neglecting these devices can result in significant financial and legal losses.
AWS IoT Services
There are several software applications that can help your organization better manage edge devices. AWS offers a suite of IoT software options that can help an organization build, deploy, manage, and secure edge devices. Some of the edge device management offerings from AWS include:
- Green grass, software that runs on peripheral devices and enables local processing, messaging, data management, and secure network connectivity;
- IoT Core, communication software that connects devices to the network without external servers or other network devices;
- IoT Device Defender, standalone security monitoring software to securely connect and protect peripheral devices;
- and IoT Device Management, a full-service IoT device monitoring software application that remotely registers, organizes, monitors, and manages peripheral devices.
You can view the pricing pages for each app or contact the vendor for pricing information.
EdgeX Foundry is another edge device management platform. EdgeX Foundry acts as a two-way transformation engine between edge devices and business applications, whether those applications reside in the data center or in the cloud. Foundry provides a core service for managing edge devices called the System Management Agent.
The System Management Agent acts as the primary communication hub between various edge devices and the data center, enabling two-way communication between the system and management for requests such as health checks, measurement requests performance or requests to start or stop a service. Essentially, it facilitates the larger management systems that a network may have
Because it is open source, EdgeX Foundry is free to download and use.
FNT Command is a modular system that allows you to manage, control, secure, and support infrastructure assets across multiple environments and configurations. FNT Command for IT Management helps you optimize the interaction of devices on your network, and FNT Command for Networks, Connectivity & Communication Services integrates management activities and information on your network. It collects information about your devices and resources and provides resource analytics to help you analyze and optimize resources.
FNT offers a range of pricing options for organizations, including purchase, license, lease, or SaaS agreements.