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Total Solution for Proxy Agent Development Announced

KNOXVILLE, Tennessee, March 28, 1995 - SNMP Research International announces support for Proxy SNMP Agents on Axis Technologies' ETRAX family of 32-bit RISC LAN-specific embedded controllers and ETRAX ADP-E development board. This means that SNMP Research International has recently completed work on a "total solution" for SNMP proxy agent development. This solution includes not only a complete SNMP agent and all of the tools necessary for extending this agent to include proxy capability, but also an inexpensive hardware solution developed by Axis Technologies. This combination offers both low unit costs and easy development for those planning proxy agent development.

This solution is based upon the Packaged Agent System, an SNMP agent system which is a complete SNMP Agent supporting both SNMP versions 1 and 2 as well as MIB-II. It is called "Packaged" because it includes:

  • its own realtime multitasking executive;
  • a complete TCP/IP protocol stack, including BOOTP and TFTP applications as well as TELNET;
  • a network device driver;
  • a timer driver; and
  • a serial port driver.

As is the case for all SNMP Research International agent systems, the Packaged Agent System is licensed in source code form and supports all of the MIB development tools available with SNMP Research International's Agent product family. These tools include powerful MIB Tools for automatic code generation directly from the MIB document and SNMP utilities for command-line debugging and testing of the agent extension.

This "total solution" also includes the ADP-E development board that is produced by Axis Technologies. The ADP-E development board is based on the AXT6100 embedded controller. The AXT6100 is a member of Axis Technologies' ETRAX family of LAN-specific embedded controllers. ETRAX embedded controllers contain the core of an entire LAN System on a single chip including:

  • CRIS, a 32-bit LAN optimized RISC CPU,
  • Ethernet and/or Token Ring network controller(s),
  • Full duplex RS-232 serial port,
  • High performance parallel ports,
  • General purpose I/O port,
  • DRAM controller,
  • FLASH programmer, and
  • "glueless" interfaces to DRAM, SRAM, EPROM, and FLASH memories.

Ethernet and Token-ring systems are built with a minimum number of components using an ETRAX embedded controller. An ETRAX embedded controller, memories, and a network interface are the limited number of components necessary to create a complete SNMP Agent in a small form factor.

Axis Technologies markets both the ETRAX family of 32-bit RISC embedded controllers and the ADP-E ETRAX development boards. The memory on ETRAX development boards can easily be expanded by the user with ZIP DRAM modules. FLASH memory can also be added to the ETRAX development boards.

An ADP-E ETRAX development board provides all of the elements necessary for attaching the system to the network as well as the communications ports necessary for developing the proxy agent.

The result of the combination of these two products add up to "one stop shopping" for low-cost stand alone SNMP Agents which are particularly useful for development of Proxy Agents. The Agent software will simply compile and run on the ETRAX board, allowing the Agent Developer to concentrate on enterprise-specific or proxy MIBs, using the array of code generation tools provided with all of SNMP Research's Agent products.

The combination of ETRAX technology and Packaged Agent System can be used to manage a wide range of devices such as:

  • Uninterruptable Power Supplies
  • Printers
  • PBXs
  • Terminal Servers
  • CSU/DSU units

The thread common to all of these products is their pre-SNMP management interface. Many vendors for stand-alone embedded systems have proprietary serial-line-based management interfaces. Such systems are typically managed by a PC which is either permanently plugged into the device's serial port or is temporarily plugged in for configuration and troubleshooting.

Advantages of this Approach

  1. Low cost: the combination of the ETRAX board and the Packaged Agent System provide a low-cost alternative to proxy agent development.
  2. Time to market: given that the software and hardware provides a complete solution, this will greatly reduce the time to market for new proxy agents.
  3. Complete hardware/software solution: rather than needing to design and implement potentially separate hardware and software solutions for the development of an SNMP Proxy Agent, the developer concentrates entirely on that portion of the task specific to the proxied device.
  4. The best agent-development tools in the industry. SNMP Research International has a comprehensive set of tools which actually produce most of the software necessary for writing a proxy agent - automatically.
  5. The ability to write standards-compliant SNMP agents without being an SNMP expert. SNMP Research International's tools insulate developers from the nitty gritty details of the SNMP protocol. Instead, developers can concentrate on the aspects of the proxy agent for which they are themselves the experts - communication between the proxy agent and the managed device.
  6. A complete set of manager development tools. SNMP Research International can provide source code for graphical (MS-DOS Windows or X Windows) manager stations. And, for developers who already have a proprietary point-and-click management application running under a windowing system, SNMP Research International can provide SNMP communications libraries to replace serial-line communications with SNMP communication directly with the agent.
  7. A small form factor SNMP Agent may be designed and produced through the combination of the ETRAX LAN-specific embedded controller and the Packaged Agent System.

Axis Technologies is a division of Axis AB. Axis AB and its divisions including Axis Communications and Axis Technologies are worldwide leaders in the design of LAN peripheral products and the placement of LAN systems technology into single-chip semiconductor solutions. Axis Technologies created ETRAX as the first family of LAN-specific 32-bit RISC embedded controllers.

In addition to SNMP Agents, ETRAX 32-bit LAN-specific embedded controllers are used in network printers, print servers, remote LAN access products, LAN CD ROM servers, switched Ethernet hubs, dedicated Token-ring hubs, wireless LAN applications, and other LAN products.

For further information about Axis and ETRAX contact Tim Sullivan, General Manager, Axis Technologies, 4 Constitution Way, Woburn, Massachusetts, 01801. Telephone: (617) 938-1927, Fax: (617) 938-6161.

SNMP Research International, Inc. provides one of the leading vendor-independent reference implementations of the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) for agents and manager stations. These products form the basis of many of today's SNMP products. Their work is ported to a multitude of hardware platforms and operating systems.

SNMP Research International, Inc. produces a family of management products based on SNMPv1, SNMPv2, and other protocols including agent and management station software for the computer and communications industries. SNMP Research's founder, Dr. Jeff Case, has long been a contributor in the area of SNMP and has written a multitude of articles and papers on the topic. As a result of his efforts, SNMP Research is in a leadership position with respect to defining the standards and constructing implementations based on SNMP, the standard protocol for TCP/IP management. SNMP Research's implementations of SNMP for management stations and agents form the basis for many of today's implementations.

For further information, contact SNMP Research International, Inc.

3001 Kimberlin Heights Road
Knoxville, Tennessee, 37920
Telephone: +1 865 579-3311
Fax: +1 865 579-6565
Email: info@snmp.com

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