Below are frequently asked questions about the Vallum Halo Manager, the Halo Agent, and Halo Apps. Halo Manager is a highly functional, cost effective Network Monitoring and Management solution. You can use Halo Manager to monitor network devices such as servers, desktops, laptops, mobile devices/tablets, routers, firewalls, essentially any asset that has an IP address. Additionally, you can manually enter IP addresses or web URLs outside your firewall that are important to you – such as supplier or partner websites, or any domain you own or need to access not hosted in your datacenter.

Vallum Halo Manager FAQs

[learn_more caption=”What is Vallum Halo Manager?”]Vallum Halo is a feature-rich network monitoring and management solution that is enterprise grade without the enterprise-grade cost. Through any standard web browser, Vallum Halo delivers a breadth of functionality including device availability, CPU and memory loads, disk space, system process and services, and many other metrics. It is exceptionally easy to install and maintain and very intuitive to use without training. The solution’s unique framework delivers the bulk of its functionality at an agent called the Halo Agent, which is a significant departure from competing solutions that typically centralize their functionality within a single, monolithic server installation. The result is bloated solutions that are too complex, have too much functionality, and are therefore too expensive to manage and update from the vendor side.

Vallum’s decentralized architectural approach maintains the functionality of the Halo Manager solution with specialized microservice applications called Halo Apps. Halo Apps are installed to Halo Agents to augment their functionality. They are easily installed or uninstalled, and new Halo Apps can be developed and deployed in a few days or weeks. This unique capability allows the end user to customize the solution to their specific needs by selecting the functionality with a Halo App that they need. One such Halo App is the Halo SNMP Card, which collects data from any SNMP enabled network device or printer. The modular architecture delivers superior scalability and flexibility, without the usual complexity and cost found with other network monitoring and management solutions.[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”Does Vallum Halo Manager require any additional hardware or software?”]No. Everything is included in the install EXE. To access Halo Manager, you only need a standard web browser.[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”What is a Halo Polling Agent”]A Halo Polling Agent is a specialized Halo App designed to conduct device discovery, provide alerting functions, and manage and collect data from other devices, Halo Agents, and Halo Apps within a subnet or group of defined devices. Halo Polling Agents can manage up to 256 devices, and they can function autonomously and continue to collect data in the event of communication disruptions. If there are more than 256 devices or more than one subnet in the network, simply install a new Halo Polling Agent for that segment. The decentralized structure and autonomous design of the Halo Polling Agent and the Halo Agents, provide a level of scalablity and simplicity that is is not found with competing solutions. More info on the free Halo Agent can be found below. [/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”How many Halo Polling Agents will I need for my network?”]The answer to this question is based on a number of different factors. The first is how many devices you have. A Halo Polling Agent can manage up to 256 devices (or any asset that has an IP, such as a web address). If you have more assets than this, you will need additional polling agents. Other factors that should be considered are how many subnets you have in your network and do you have different organizations or have devices in remote geographic locations. A Halo Polling Agent can be deployed to provide scalability, but also to manage groups of devices/IPs with different security requirements. Visit our product page for pricing on Halo Manager with multiple polling agents. [/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”How do I install a Halo Polling Agent?”]First, a Polling Agent is a Halo application and must be installed on a previously-deployed Halo Agent that has been installed on a server. There are two links in Halo Manager where you can install a Halo Polling Agent. The first is below the top menu with the link “Edit Agent List.” This link will show you a list of current Halo Polling Agents. Click the “Upload & Install Remote Halo Polling Agent…” at the top of the window. The second link is in the Admin Tools menu at the top navigation bar. Once there, click “Install Halo App” at the bottom of the left menu bar. Both of these methods function the same and will ask you to enter an existing GMI Agent name or IP Address. If there is not a Halo Agent present or a Halo Polling Agent is already installed, you will receive an error message and will need to contact Vallum. [/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”I see “Site ID” referenced in the Halo Manager; what is this?”]The Site ID is a unique site identifier, which identifies your Halo installation and serves as the licensing element for Vallum Halo Manager. Each Site ID is unique to each Halo Polling Agent and the server it is installed on. The Site ID is used to generate a license key allowing for the use of the Halo Polling Agent on the Halo Agent and server it is installed on. Note that Each Vallum Halo installation comes with one Halo Polling Agent with its own unique Site ID.[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”Can I name my devices?”]Yes. On the “Device List” menu, click the device name, click “Edit Device Parms” and then you can change the Display Name as well as other information about the device.[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”Can I create different administrative logons to Vallum Halo Manager?”]Yes. Just below the top menu is a link called “Enable Logons.” This options will allow you to enable logons to the system the first time. You can also find the same menu under “Admin Tools” and “System Access” on the top left menu. You can then define your administrative logon and password, and optionally specify and enable an Active Directory group to grant other users access to the Halo Manager system.[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”How can I display the device metrics of a device?”]You can display metrics such as CPU, Disk, memory, network data traffic, processes and services by clicking on a device name in the device list. The following menu will provide you information on the device. Click on “Device Metrics” on the left menu (second from the bottom) and CPU information will be displayed. You can click on any of the links for additional metric data.[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”Can Halo Manager issue an alert when a device goes down?”]Yes. Halo can issue emails to various users and administrators that you specify. The Halo polling agent periodically checks the system at a user specified interval, and issues an email alert if the percent availability of one or more selected devices falls below a user defined threshold. This alerting technique, in addition to being simple to configure, also suppresses false positives, minimizes email bandwidth usage, and keeps your email alerts pertinent.[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”What are Halo Apps?”]Halo Apps are specialized applications designed to add functionality to the Halo Manager solution in a modular manner. They are easily downloaded, installed or uninstalled. Halo Apps allow the end user to select the functionality they need, avoiding the functionality bloat that is typical of other competing solutions. [/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”Where can I find Halo Apps?”]Halo Apps are available for download from the Halo App Store. [/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”What if I can’t find the functionality I need in a Halo App?”]Vallum Professional services can create a Halo App for you in days or weeks depending on the complexity. This is the unique benefit of the Vallum Halo Manager architecture. [/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”What is the Halo Agent?”]The Halo Agent is a program that you can install on your windows servers and desktops. It is included with the Vallum Halo Manager installation. The Halo Agent is a low-overhead, highly flexible service that provides secure management functions to the Halo Manager and Halo Polling Agents. The Halo Agent provides a variety of metrics and capabilities that complete the power of the Vallum Halo Manager solution. The Halo Agent can be installed to any Windows operating system. [/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”How do I know if a Halo Agent is installed on a device?”]On the “Device List” menu, there is a “status” column. If the device has a Halo Agent installed on it, it will show “gmi-up”. Other devices will show such statuses as “ping-up” or “no-resp” with various colors with red generally indicating no communications. Note that you can click on the “Status” column to sort. You can also view the Services of the platform directly and look for the name GMI.[/learn_more]

Vallum Halo Agent FAQs

The Vallum Halo Agent is based on technology by the GMI-Foundation and is supported by Vallum Software. Visit Vallum Software for more information. (Click on question to reveal answer.)

[learn_more caption=”What is GMI?”] GMI stands for “General Management Interface”, it is a new decentralized architectural approach to Network Monitoring and Management that eliminates much of the cost and complexity that are present with most network monitoring and management solutions on the market today. Specifically, GMI is an intelligent agent program, a protocol, and a simple but effective support system for all types of network management, remote control, auditing, and remote software distribution.[/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”What is your licensing model for the Halo Agent?”]The Halo Manager is free to use up to 15 devices. All that is required is to update the license key every 90 days. There will be a prompt in the Halo Manager interface when it is withing 30 days of expiring. Have more than 15 devices to manage? Vallum Software has simple and cost effective per/device monthly subscription pricing. [/learn_more]

[learn_more caption=”What platforms and operating systems do you support?”]Currently, GMI supports all versions of the Windows operating system: 2000, 2003, 2008, 2012, XP, Vista, and Windows 7. The Halo Agent is self-contained and does not require Java, .NET, or other supporting software to fully operate.

[learn_more caption=”Do you support other platforms, aside from Windows?”]A Linux version of the Halo Agent is currently in development, and may be announced this year. Following that, agents will be available for other types of systems.

[learn_more caption=”I am a programmer. Where is the API?”] Vallum Software with the GMI Foundation provide two different APIs: (1) The  Halo Agent-API package allows developers to create new Halo Applications for the Halo Agents; (2) The  Halo Agent Cmd-API package allows developers to create new command programs that communicate with agent programs. Both of these API packages are fairly well documented, and available for download on on the Halo App Store and on the GMI Foundation website.