Raritan Dominion KX232
Raritan Computer Inc.
As a hardware solution it avoids operating system incompatibilities.
Every connection requires an adapter module, which adds to the overall cost.
This is a good flexible hardware solution, especially for servers.
The Dominion KX232 provides connections for up to 32 servers and devices in a 1U rack-mounted unit. It also offers two 10/100 Base-T Ethernet ports, one master and one back-up, a serial connection for an external modem, and serial and USB connections for local admin.
Installation and setup were straightforward using the local connection interfaces, though it is also possible to configure the device from a web browser.
The device needs an open TCP port in the firewall if remote access is required, but this can be changed from the default value on configuration. If the browser-based interface is used TCP ports 80 and 443 need to be open in the firewall.
The graphical interfaces are clear and simple, though there is no online help available. The accompanying CD-Rom, however, contains comprehensive information on installation and setup, as well as a 72-page user manual.
Raritan has widened the range of supported devices by using standard connection ports rather than dedicating ports to different types of connections, as before with models such as the Dominion KSX.
Connections are made to Computer Interface Modules (CIMs) connected to the server. The modules make the necessary signal conversions and protocol changes, and provide the physical connections to whichever type of server or device is being managed. CIMs are available for servers with PS/2 or USB connections, and further modules are available for Sun servers and serial devices such as managed switches and "headless" servers.
Remote access can be subjected to various levels of security. Sessions can be disconnected after preset times, connections can be restricted to approved IP addresses only, and the device can be configured to integrate with LDAP or RADIUS security. Users can also be checked against the device's internal security lists.
All remote sessions use SSL authentication, but data encryption (on by default) is optional. Sessions can be disconnected after preset idle times, and connections can be restricted to addresses contained in the device's internal access lists.