B.1. Why SNMP?

In the early 1970s, computers and their I/O devices were large enough to need air-conditioned rooms of their own. Most large companies performed their computing tasks on stand-alone systems. It wasn't hard to tell when something went wrong—an error would print on the system console, and the front panel lights would stop blinking.

Today, even small technology companies have a server room with racks of computers and network appliances from multiple vendors, including switches, routers, print servers, webservers, RAID servers, and so forth. Network printers are distributed at convenient locations around the site, and each desk has a desktop or laptop computer. In fact, high-tech firms typically have more computers than employees.

Unlike ...

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