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Is SNMP used to show a machine what software it must be running?

I heard that SNMP is used for monitoring, so I am curious whether SNMP is used in this way.

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SNMP is used to monitor network devices or nodes, and may be used to configure them. –  Keith Aug 30 '12 at 1:50
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Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snmp

SNMP can provide vital information about a node on a network. Usually used to monitor devices. If you want to see SNMP information there are many free tools available. You will need to set a community name on your devices to be able to interogate them (or if you're lucky, they will be set with the default "public").

If you want your computer to serve SNMP information, most operating systems including Windows support this. Usually you will need to enable this as a feature of the operating system.

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Yes, depending on vendor implementation, SNMP can be used to specify the name of a new software image, a server where it can be retrieved, and then to set a flag to tell the device to begin the upgrade process. This is how cable modems are upgraded, for instance. You would have to check the specific device's SNMP documentation to see if that feature is possible for what you wish to use it for.

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key word here is 'can'. that isn't its typical usage. –  Sirex Apr 17 '13 at 20:26
    
It is the typical and only way to upgrade DOCSIS cable modems. And certain SNMP-heavy UI routers(Bay Networks/Juniper), and even cisco routers have such capability. –  Nevin Williams Apr 18 '13 at 3:09
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