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4.3. Upgrading Your Hardware

Now that you know whether or not you have SNMP devices on your network, it might be time to upgrade! You may find that some of the devices you would like to manage don't support SNMP. There are two ways to upgrade: you can retire your existing equipment and buy newer, more manageable hardware, or you can upgrade your equipment's firmware (if provided by the vendor) to a version that supports SNMP. Some vendors, however, will offer to buy back older equipment, or even give a discount for turning in a competitor's equipment.

Of course, updating your equipment may not be necessary. If you have software applications that are used to manage non-SNMP equipment and they work, there is no need to upgrade. If you're reasonably handy with scripts and want to learn about SNMP in some depth, you may find that it's possible to write scripts that allow you to use SNMP to monitor applications that doesn't support SNMP using wrapper/scripts. For an example of this, see xref linkend="enettdg-CHP-12-SECT-4"/> in
Chapter 12, "Adapting SNMP to Fit Your Environment".

Whatever approach you take, realize that SNMP exists to provide a consistent way to manage networked equipment. If you're currently managing your network using a number of legacy management tools, each supporting a few devices from a particular vendor, SNMP provides a way out. You may be comfortable with your old tools -- but it will become increasingly convenient to use SNMP to provide a uniform network-management approach.

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