Active management technology (AMT) is a form of software made by Intel® for the management and support of a large network of computers. It allows an administrator remote access to all the machines on a network even if they are powered off. Active management technology is a commonly used form of software found in many mid to large sized offices today.
This technology offers an administrator a great deal of control over the systems he oversees. Almost all of the features are available for an administrator regardless of whether the computers on the network are turned off, or the operating system has crashed, or the system is not functioning properly. This process is called lights out management.
By using active management technology an administrator can remotely turn on and perform all the general tasks on a computer that is hooked up to the network. The administrator can update the BIOS of a computer remotely as well. This is useful if the computer has crashed and cannot be turned on and reconfigured in the conventional way.
There are also security reasons that an administrator might consider implementing active management technology. By using this technology, an administrator can monitor the internet traffic on a system. Certain computers and sections of the network can be blocked off if suspicious activities are observed. This can greatly reduce the percentage of a computer system that is affected by destructive viruses.
Active management technology can be used on almost any operating system. All new versions of the software are approved by the regulating body, the Distributed Management Task Force. This group, featuring members of many major computer and electronics companies, is tasked with making the hardware and software created by major technology firms as compatible with one another as possible.
To run the features of active management technology, an administrator uses an intelligent platform management interface. These are specially designed computers also developed by Intel® for exclusive use with active management technology. They are unique in that they do not require an operating system to perform their functions. All an intelligent platform management interface requires to work is to be connected to wall power and to the computer or system of computers that are supposed to be managed.
The use of computer networks is becoming more common both in the workplace and at home. As a result, the need to protect and manage networks is increasing. Active management technology provides a way for supervisors to do this easily, and without conflicting with the work being done on the computers.