What’s behind the new AIM standard?

The rising demand for bandwidth, storage and computing power with limited space and resources is making the management of IT infrastructure more complex. To enable IT departments to meet the challenge, automated infrastructure management (AIM) provides complete real-time control of all network physical components and their connections.

Scheduled to be released in the coming months, the ISO/IEC AIM systems standard is designed to specify the requirements and recommendations for features of AIM systems, and explains how those AIM systems contribute to operational efficiency.

Although AIM has been around for several years, there are several reasons why this standard is being introduced now.

More complex networks

The growth of strategic trends such as mobile computing, server virtualisation and the public cloud is making the IT environment more dynamic. The AIM standard specifies the requirements for end-to-end real time documentation of all components including fiber channel circuits, storage area network (SAN) switch boards, and remote access connections to enable better management of complex networks.

> See also: The Internet of Things will affect how businesses choose data centres

Need for a common language

With the increase in demand for automated solutions for managing network topologies to increase accuracy and efficiency, there are more vendors involved, each offering different solutions with different capabilities. The AIM standard will provide a common language and a description of basic requirements to simplify the process of specifying system requirements for enterprises purchasing AIM systems.

Focus on efficiency

Intelligent infrastructure management replaces more manual methods of documenting network topologies including excel spread sheets and manual methods.   By following the standard enterprises can reduce labor expenses, decrease downtime, optimize power and space utilization and accelerate service deployment.

Increased security threats

Networks are vulnerable on multiple levels—from malware attacks to manipulation or theft of operational data to unauthorized network access. As more industrial operations become linked to corporate networks, and connectivity is pushed out to devices, the number of entrance points onto the network increases. Where security vulnerabilities may occur, organizations must develop safeguards within the infrastructure to reduce the opportunity for intrusion.

The AIM standard adds an extra layer of security to mission critical communications networks by guarding the network from unauthorized connects, disconnects, moves and changes. Due to its integral part in maintaining network security, AIM is being addressed in the latest version of the TIA Physical Network Security Standard.

> See also: Striking a balance between data control and business demands

By documenting all IT assets in a consistent database, AIM enables IT managers to manage them taking into consideration parameters that reside on other systems, such as energy requirements and cooling capacity in a single system using one dashboard.  

Providing complete real-time control of all network physical components and their connections, AIM provides businesses with a more robust network infrastructure with increased productivity and service availability.

This release of the AIM standard will enable the automatic documentation of all network components and their connections resulting in a better-managed network with greater independence and intelligence.

by Kobi Haggai, Product Manger, RiT Technologies

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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IT Infrastructure