For governmental (and some commercial too!) IT groups, network modernization takes more than incremental improvements, according to the Social Security Administration’s IT chief.

SSA CIO Rob Klopp told an AFCEA audience that technology is advancing too rapidly to catch up a little at a time.

“You will not be able to take a 20-year-old technology and try to incrementally catch up to technology that’s moving away from you,” said Klopp. “What you’re going to have to do is throw it out and start all over again.”

IT modernization needs to target improvement aggressively, going beyond what’s safe and comfortable technology. An example he gave is electronic medical records. Currently, they are seen as a great improvement, but the current modernization technology needs to be looking to accommodate the wave of data that will come from the IoT. Wearable devices, phones and more are all poised to contribute health data, and health IT planning should be thinking about it.

Network modernization through automation

Another aspect of network modernization is significant automation. As an Uplogix customer, SSA has deployed Uplogix 5000s in branch offices across the country and around the world to help manage their network.

Some of the automation features benefiting SSA’s branch office networks include:

  • Automate standard support routines | Uplogix provides numerous recovery procedures that allow you to automatically address common faults without human intervention such as automatically rebooting a hung, or wedged, device to multiple types of configuration recovery.  A robust automation framework is provided for end-users to modify prepackaged or define sequential and conditional recovery procedures that align with their support practices (e.g.   Clear Service Module -> Cycle Interface -> Show Tech -> Reboot -> Cycle Power).
  • Recover from failed configuration changes via the powerful SurgicalRollback™ feature | This added “safety net” enables IT staff to make real-time to changes to network elements without the risk of failed configurations impacting operational performance.
  • Reboot hung equipment | Uplogix’ automated diagnosis framework can automatically detect a hung, or wedged, device and instantly cycle power to the unit. The Uplogix Local Manager can often detect and resolve this common problem before traditional management tools even know it exists.
  • Troubleshoot WAN connection issues | Uplogix can automatically detect common WAN problems, including outages or flapping circuits, and provide an instant diagnosis with the supporting trending or configuration data to speed recovery, document outages, or facilitate carrier resolution.