Agentless DeviceOps – You Do NOT Need a Third Party Agent on Your Device

By Tony Lapolito

With EdgeIQ, you can focus on the strategic parts of your business. We take care of the DeviceOps - Fleet management, user/account management, provisioning, monitoring/alerting, software management, data management and analytics, workflow integration and orchestration, and security.

We do the ordinary, so you can do the extraordinary. And it’s fast and easy to get started with us.

Remote device management is a two-way dialog. To monitor and control devices, you need to get information from the device to a local or cloud server and vice versa. Thank you, Captain Obvious!

What’s not as obvious is the way it gets done these days. When using a third party in the “Soviet Era” of remote device management, you had pretty much two options: install a proprietary agent on every single connected endpoint for command and control or implement an SDK in your firmware or embedded code. Only then could you get all the intel about your devices like heartbeats and status, give commands, and send software updates.

Agents had limited capabilities beyond executing orders and updates and sending status messages, mainly due to the constrained footprint of devices and operating systems. In other words, it was a simple client-server connection between the edge device and cloud, not true distributed edge computing. If you were using a third party, you now had someone’s proprietary agent running on your devices and controlling a lot of the interaction. And, it was the only link you had to a connected product at your customer’s business.

Vendor lock-in, no real edge computing

What could go wrong? Turns out, a lot. You experienced dreaded vendor lock-in if you were using a third-party platform. And, you couldn’t touch your device unless you went through their platform and their agent, a.k.a Boris or Natasha.

You couldn’t really do any computing at the edge. That’s not a good thing, because many edge use cases are rooted in the need to process data locally in real time — situations where transmitting the data to a datacenter for processing causes unacceptable levels of latency.

You really don’t need their spy in the room

Implementing a DeviceOps framework that doesn’t impose a third-party agent on endpoints is not only valuable, it is infinitely possible. EdgeIQ provides an efficient yet powerful compute service to enable this. The service can run on an edge computer, gateway, appliance, server, or even an embedded single board micro. But it doesn’t need to be deployed on endpoints connected to the gateways.

Alternatively, EdgeIQ enables implementations that have absolutely none of our software at the edge. Increasingly, devices are communicating directly with a product vendor’s cloud service, some by leveraging LwM2M with their own local client or communication platforms like Satellite, which only require cloud-to-cloud communication for EdgeIQ.

Be the leader of the free world

Regardless of the approach, organizations can have the best of all worlds, getting reliable, secure device communication and edge computing and doing so without a third-party agent deployed on all their devices. With EdgeIQ’s agentless approach, you get more control over the device tech stack and more IP ownership. You have complete flexibility of device-cloud communication architectures, too. You reduce your business risks — and your security risks.

If you want to learn how to implement an architecture that gives you back control - let us know and we’ll be happy to show you how.

We accelerate the digital and business transformations of the world’s leading connected product companies. By working with us, they can better serve their customers, optimize their operations, and enable entirely new business models. We solve problems in almost any field, from field service and industrial automation to medical devices and smart spaces. Let us show you how we deliver the simplest solutions for you to achieve speed and scale.

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