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How to Troubleshoot NetGuardian Email Alarms

If you've got a NetGuardian 832A, you don't need a master to monitor alarms. The NetGuardian can send email alarm notifications directly to your techs.

Email alarm notifications speed up repairs and reduce service restoration times. Of course, you want to make sure your email alarms are delivered reliably. Network problems can sometimes prevent email delivery.

Fortunately, it's easy to test and troubleshoot email alarms using the NetGuardian's powerful debug tool, which gives you a view of live communications traffic. Here's how to do it ...

How to access the NetGuardian's debug tool

First, establish a Telnet connection to the NetGuardian unit. For better security, NetGuardian Telnet session aren't hosted on the standard Telnet port, but on Port 2002.

NetGuardian debug tool
Figure 1: The NetGuardian's built-in debug tool gives you a view of live communications traffic
  1. To connect via Telnet, open a terminal emulator or DOS command line. Type "telnet", the IP address of the NetGuardian, and 2002, then press Enter. For example, "telnet 2002."
  2. At the password prompt, enter the password for this NetGuardian unit. (The factor default password is "dpstelecom."
  3. Type "D" to select the Debug option. (See Figure 1.)
  4. A list of debug filters will be displayed. Each filter one aspect of communication traffic. By default, all filters are off.
  5. Press lower-case "r" to activate the reporting filter. You will see the prompt "<r:RPT_dbgON>", which indicates that the reporting filter is on.

Now create a test alarm

Now that you've opened the debug filter, you want to create some sample email traffic. You can create a test alarm by temporarily reversing the polarity of an alarm point.

Reversing alarm point polarity
Figure 2: Reversing polarity of a single alarm point
  1. Make a second connection to the NetGuardian through the Web Browser Interface.
  2. Click Edit to open the Edit menu, then click Base Alarms.
  3. Change the polarity of an alarm point by choosing Reversed from the Polarity pop-up menu. (See Figure 2.) The reversed polarity will make the NetGuardian report an alarm while the alarm point is in its normal state. (Remember to change the polarity back when you're done.)

Viewing email traffic

Now change back to your original Telnet session and the debug tool will show you the complete email transaction as it happens. Figure 3 shows a successful transaction between the NetGuardian and the email server.

NetGuardian debug traffic
Figure 3: A successful email transaction, as seen with the debug tool

Here's a checklist of what you should see in a successful email notification:

  1. Do you see any debug information? If not, double-check the NetGuardian's email configuration. If the configuration is OK, try pinging the email server.
  2. The debug should begin with posting the alarm point. In the example shown, the alarm point posting is "<RPTpost:>02>".
  3. Next you'll see the email server's IP address. In the example it's shown as "<SMTPconn.>". Make sure this matches the email server IP address databased in the NetGuardian.
  4. The email server will greet the NetGuardian. In the example, the email server says "HELO techlab.com." If you don't see a HELO greeting, check to make sure the IP address is actually the email server.
  5. After that you'll see the From and To email addresses. The From address should be the NetGuardian's address, and the To address should be the alarm notice recipient's.
  6. Check if the email server recognizes the NetGuardian as an authorized email sender. You may see the message "User not authorized." If the NetGuardian is not authorized, you may need to include a password in the NetGuardian email configuration.
  7. Finally, did the email server accept the message? Check for the notice "Message accepted for delivery."

What if the email didn't go through?

If the email server doesn't accept the message for delivery, your next troubleshooting steps are to double-check the NetGuardian's email configuration and/or ping the email server.

Part Two: Double-checking email configuration and pinging the email server ...

NetGuardian: SNMP Traps, Email Notification and More ...

Email alarm notification and comprehensive debug tools are just part of the NEBS-certified NetGuardian 832A.. Mediate contact closures to SNMP Traps ... access remote site equipment through terminal server ports ... learn everything the NetGuardian 832A can do for you.

See Full Specifications of the NetGuardian 832A