FAQ | DataMiner by Skyline Communications

Frequently Asked Questions

Over the past years, DataMiner® has single-handed redefined how operators manage the most complex operational ecosystems, and it has become the industry benchmark for multi-vendor network management. Today the DataMiner platform is acknowledged as the ultimate solution, and Skyline Communications has become synonym for continuous innovation.

DataMiner is the global leading solution for end-to-end multi-vendor network management of IPTV, HFC broadband, satellite and broadcast ecosystems.

The solution is designed to interface with any device or system from any vendor, and currently features over 5000 deployed drivers, which interface the platform with solutions from more than 600 leading industry vendors.

The solution has been deployed by leading operators in the IPTV, HFC broadband, satellite and broadcast industry across the globe.

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Yes. DataMiner is supplied with the unique warranty that it can interface with any device or any system from any vendor, regardless of the protocol or interface required for that purpose, including both industry-standard interfaces (such as SNMP, XML/SOAP, HTTP, WMI, Corba, etc.) and any other possible vendor-specific / proprietary interfaces.

The solution has a powerful multi-vendor protocol engine for that purpose and has already been integrated with more than 5000 devices and systems from more than 600 different industry vendors.

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Drivers are supplied with the warranty that they can provide any functionality supported by the third-party device or system. By default, drivers are designed by Skyline to support any parameter or control provided by the device.

A driver in DataMiner specifies how DataMiner interacts with a third-party device or system, i.e. what protocol to use (e.g. SNMP, XML / SOAP, HTML, proprietary, WMI, CORBA, telnet, SSH, etc.), which information is retrieved and how it is processed, the presentation on the user interface, etc. The drivers are designed in an open industry standard XML markup format, enabling any third-party, including you, to develop new drivers. In other words, anybody can interface the standard DataMiner System with any possible third party device or system.

DataMiner can manage any device or system from any vendor, regardless of its interface, whether it is an industry-standard or proprietary/vendor-specific interface. DataMiner is primarily designed for the HFC broadband, satellite, IPTV and broadcast industry, where it can manage entire systems end to end including signal reception & acquisition, digital master video headends, multimedia applications, back offices, IP network infrastructure, server farms, data centers, regional headends, legacy analog infrastructure, HFC outdoor networks, transport & access networks, terrestrial transmission sites, satellite earth stations & backhaul, VSAT platforms, playout facilities, master control rooms, test and measurement solutions, environmental and power systems, and customer premises equipment (including for example cable & DSL modems, set-top boxes and eMTAs), and much more.

DataMiner is by far the most comprehensive solution in the industry, and the only solution available providing real end-to-end management, across all vendor and technology boundaries.

Skyline Communications’ sole activity is the design and implementation of multi-vendor network management solutions. The company doesn’t have any other products or stakes that could potentially interfere in one way or another with your deployment of a multi-vendor network management system, and your freedom to select any product from any vendor to design your operational ecosystem.

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No. DataMiner is a standard off-the-shelf solution (i.e. all customers use the exact same standard software platform), but the pronounced open architecture enables anybody to integrate it seamlessly with their own specific operational environment. This standard platform is proven in hundreds of deployments across the globe for the end-to-end management of some of the most prestigious and complex technical ecosystems.

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DataMiner offers you the three indispensable ingredients for genuine multi-vendor network management.

  • DataMiner is guaranteed to interface with any device or system from any vendor, independent of the interface.
  • DataMiner drivers, required to interface the platform with a specific third-party product, are open format and can be designed by anybody, including you.
  • DataMiner is developed and commercialized by an independent company, i.e. Skyline has no other stakes but the DataMiner platform.

DataMiner features unique user-definable capabilities, based on a powerful open-architecture automation, correlation, scheduling and reporting engine. This enables operators to adapt the platform to any evolving or newly emerging requirements on the fly. This contrary to solutions that provide strictly pre-defined functionality, and that do not cater for any changes. The ‘enabling’ aspect of DataMiner is one of the key benefits, which can make a significant contribution to the further reduction of operational costs.

Yes. On the one hand, Skyline sells DataMiner software products, which enable customers, or any other third party, to build comprehensive end-to-end network management platforms. But on the other hand, Skyline, as well as certified partners, also independently offer a variety of professional services, which allow operators to tap into our vast industry expertise and to buy turn-key network management platforms, delivered exactly according to their individual specifications and ready for operation. This enables our customers to implement their projects on time and on budget.

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A DataMiner Agent or DMA is a single server in a DataMiner System, which has the ability to manage a certain number of devices and systems. A DataMiner Agent typically runs on an industry-standard 1U 19” rack-mounted server or on a single blade of a blade server. A DataMiner Agent contains all functionalities and capabilities, and essentially constitutes a fully operational DataMiner platform.

To expand the capacity of a DataMiner System, you only need to add additional DMAs. While a single DMA already constitutes a fully functional DataMiner System, multiple DMAs in a single system automatically behave like a single consolidated system. Therefore, no matter if you have one or many physical servers (depending on the capacity requirements and architecture), the users always see a single consolidated environment.

Adding a new DMA to an already operational environment can be done completely at run-time without interfering with the ongoing operations, and is a fully automated procedure. This unique architecture, referred to as distributed intelligence, offers major operational advantages including the ability to increase system and processing capacity without the need to interrupt operations, an overall increased uptime, increased resilience against various disaster scenarios, the ultimate scalability enabling DataMiner to manage the largest operational systems end to end, and the freedom to deploy DataMiner in both centralized and distributed architectures.

DataMiner is, because of the unique distributed intelligence architecture, a very scalable solution, suitable for managing any systems ranging from a handful of devices to many tens of thousands or even millions of devices in the case of CPE management. As the system is being expanded, new DataMiner Agents are added, which also increases the overall system processing and storage power.

Multiple DataMiner Agents in a single system automatically function as a single consolidated system. Therefore, irrespective of the number of servers in the system, when users access a DataMiner System, they get a single user interface showing the entire managed environment.

Yes. With DataMiner you always have the option to either interface with devices directly or with an Element Management System (EMS) in case a subset of your devices is already managed by an EMS. Similar to device integrations, DataMiner drivers delivered by Skyline for interfacing with EMSs are delivered with the guarantee that they can support any functionality available through the interface provided by the EMS.

While easy to deploy and intuitive to use, DataMiner offers a wealth of features and capabilities, and for an optimal return on your investment it is essential to fully exploit those. After all, DataMiner is an enabling platform, allowing operators to constantly evaluate their operations and to continue optimizing service quality and availability. Furthermore, as DataMiner has the potential to span across your operational infrastructure, the investment in training for your staff can be leveraged across many different applications and domains.

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Yes. DataMiner is a software application, which entirely runs and operates in conjunction with industry-standard hardware readily available from many industry hardware vendors. For any of the hardware required, you always have the option to either purchase this from Skyline Communications as part of a turn-key delivery, or directly from your preferred hardware vendor (in which case Skyline can provide you with the required minimum specifications).