G&D MatrixGuard: Maximum security for a KVM Matrix-Grid™

G&D MatrixGuard: Maximum security for a KVM Matrix-Grid™

A KVM Matrix-Grid™ helps you implement extremely large KVM installations. Communication between the matrix switches is bidirectional. Especially for critical applications, a fully redundant topology provides further advantages for the availability of all systems connected.

Users, however, don’t even realize the complexity of the installation. For them, the matrix switches in the grid feel like one large matrix, thus letting them do their work without having to spend one single thought on the system’s infrastructure. They enjoy the many advantages of even more flexibility and reliability and can access all computers connected to the grid from their workstations.

When setting up a grid, however, you should take a few things into account to make your installation as secure as possible. All matrices included in the grid work decentrally. However, you have to assign a matrix switch as database master for the entire matrix grid. The database master lets you manage the entire system and stores all records locally. The other matrix switches in the grid run in the Slave database mode. Each of them gets a current replica of the entire master database ensuring basic protection for failure scenarios. Even if the database master fails, the database is still stored and available on the database slave. However, if the master would fail, the database would switch to read-only mode, allowing only basic KVM operation. In this case, you would have read-only access to the local database replica, and you would not be able to modify any records.

To offer you even more security and flexibility for such a scenario, we have developed the MatrixGuard.

How does a MatrixGuard work?

If the database master fails or is not available, another matrix switch takes over its tasks with the help of a MatrixGuard. A database slave becomes the new database master. This change of roles takes place automatically according to previously defined rules. Matrix grid members connect to the new master and the system restarts automatically.  And you do not even have to do anything during this process. The entire operation of the remaining components is automatically ensured (except for end devices connected to the matrix that is no longer available).

MatrixGuard including a master and several slave matrix switches

With the option “Restore connections” you can also restore the switching states you used at the moment the master had failed.

But what happens when the original database master restarts? Even this does not interfere with running operation. If another member has taken over the role of the database master in the meantime, the original master automatically sets itself to “Slave” mode. Thus, you do not lose any changes you’ve made to the database in the meantime.

Guntermann & Drunck

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