How to View, Edit, and Read the Management Information Base (MIB)

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How to View the MIB

The MIB file is simply ASCII text and can be viewed in any word processor or text editor, such as Microsoft Notepad. Some manufacturers provide precompiled MIBs in binary format, but those aren't readable. You want the raw ASCII version of the MIB file.

Note: MIB files are sometimes provided as Unix text files. Unix text format is significantly different from DOS/Windows text format. DOS/Windows text files have a carriage return and a line feed at the end of each line; Unix files only have a line feed. If you view a Unix text file in a Windows text editor, all you'll see is one long line, because the editor will never hit a carriage return.

If you want to view MIB files on a Windows PC, ask your vendor for a DOS-formatted version. Or, if you're a do-it-yourself kind of person, you can get a conversion utility to convert between text formats.
        FROM RFC1213-MIB
        FROM RFC-1212
        FROM RFC1155-SMI;
dpsInc OBJECT IDENTIFIER ::= {enterprises 2682}
dpsAlarmControl OBJECT IDENTIFIER ::= {dpsInc 1}
tmonXM OBJECT IDENTIFIER ::= {dpsAlarmControl 1}
tmonIdent OBJECT IDENTIFIER ::= {tmonXM 1}
tmonIdentManufacturer OBJECT-TYPE
    SYNTAX DisplayString
    ACCESS read-only
    STATUS mandatory
    DESCRIPTION "The TMON/XM Unit manufacturer.""
    ::= {tmonIdent 1}
tmonIdentModel OBJECT-TYPE
    SYNTAX DisplayString
    ACCESS read-only
    STATUS mandatory
    DESCRIPTION "The TMON/XM model designation.""

How to Edit the MIB

DPS Telecom SNMP Presentation Software
DPS Telecom SNMP Presentation Software
Generally speaking, MIB files aren't designed to be edited by the end user. You could edit the text descriptions of managed objects to be more user-friendly, but it's better to use your SNMP manager's presentation software to create a useful display.

How to Read and Understand the MIB

To read a MIB file, you have to understand just a little about how the MIB is structured. Don't worry - you don't have to master MIB notation in order to get useful information from the MIB. In this paper we're going to cover just the essentials you need to know to discover the telemetry capabilities of SNMP devices.
DPS Telecom SNMP Presentation Software
Each element in the MIB is given an object identifier, or OID. This tree structure illustrates how each OID is formulated.

Next Page: What does a management information base (MIB) look like?

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