About Intel AMT > Use Cases of Intel AMT

Use Cases of Intel® AMT

The following use cases show some of the power of Intel AMT as a platform management and protection tool.

Discover all of your computing assets

Intel AMT stores hardware and software information in non-volatile memory (Intel AMT stores hardware information automatically. A software agent running on the host platform is required to capture and store software asset information.) With built-in manageability, Intel AMT allows IT personnel to discover hardware and software assets even while PCs are powered off.

The Hardware Asset Feature can be used to retrieve the latest platform hardware inventory. A software application running locally on the platform can store information in non-volatile third-party data storage using the Storage Administration and Operations feature (on systems running firmware earlier than Intel ME 12.0.45.1000) or the Web Application Hosting feature (on systems running Intel ME 12.0.45.1000 or later). The storage feature was removed from the Intel ME firmware in release 12.0.45.1000.

Heal systems remotely regardless of system state

The built-in manageability in Intel AMT provides out-of-band management capabilities that allow IT to remotely heal systems after OS failures. Alerting and event logging help IT detect problems quickly to reduce downtime. Systems can be diagnosed and re-booted remotely, reducing the need for on-site visits. The reboot can be from a remote image. The IT operater can remotely view the platform screen and control the platform with the local keyboard and mouse, even when the host operating system is stalled or not booted.

Besides using the Discover use-case to determine the current hardware and software configuration of a platform, an IT technician can monitor performance of a platform remotely by using the Event Manager Feature to create event filters and to log events and send alerts of critical occurrences. The technician can take over control of the platform using the Redirection Feature via the Redirection Library and boot remotely using the Remote Control Feature. The KVM Feature gives the IT operator access to the platform screen, keyboard and mouse.

Protect against malicious software attacks

Intel AMT helps to protect an organization’s network by making it easier to keep software and virus protection consistent and later-to-date across the enterprise. Third party software can store version numbers or policy data in non-volatile memory for off-hours retrieval or updates.

A local application can use the Storage Administration and Operations Feature. to save version information for firewall and anti-virus applications. A network application can read this information to determine if the firewall and anti-virus programs are up-to-date. If they are not, the network application can use the Redirection Feature and Remote Control Feature to update them, even if the platform is powered down. The System Defense* feature can limit the network access of the platform until the updates have been completed. Use the Alarm Clock Feature to automatically wake up the platform for hot fixes, anti-virus, and other software updates.

Contain the effect of malware and platform misuse

Intel AMT with System Defense* reduces exposure to virus infections by containing outbreaks and software tampering on the managed client, sealing the infected network element from the rest of the network. The Agent Presence capability detects whether critical applications such as anti-virus or software inventory programs are running. If they are not, Intel AMT can send a report immediately to a management console and, if necessary, isolate the platform until an IT technician remedies the problem.

An IT administrator uses the Agent Presence Feature to register applications that are required by IT policy to run on client platforms, such as Anti-virus, firewall, or software installation tracking programs. ISVs develop these applications incorporating calls to the Agent Presence Feature. When the application starts executing, it sends “heartbeat” messages to Intel AMT. If the application fails to start or stops running due to a virus interrupting its operation or due to a user shutting it down, Intel AMT detects the problem and can send an alert to a management console using the Event Management Feature. A System Defense policy, created with the System Defense Feature can limit workstation access to the network until the interrupted application is operational. The IT policy can enable the Access Monitor Feature and designate an auditor to track critical events that would reveal unauthorized access to Intel AMT.

Support Out of Band Manageability without Compromising Enterprise Network Integrity

The Access Control List Management Feature, the Network Administration Feature, and and the Certificate Management Feature, among others, are used to configure the Access Control Lists, network settings, and security parameters. Most of the associated methods are used during the setup and configuration process.

These use cases are only samples of what Intel AMT can do to advance the state-of the-art in managing enterprise computing.

* The System Defense feature is being deprecated. Starting from Intel ME 18.0 firmware, the feature will no longer be available.

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