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MFT Agents: Definition, Differences and Use Cases

In GoAnywhere’s latest product release of its Managed File Transfer solution, MFT agent capabilities were introduced. The following resource aims to help readers understand what MFT agents are, the difference between a traditional MFT deployment and an MFT agent deployment and some example use cases. For further questions, open the Live Chat box at the bottom right of this page or send us an email at [email protected].

What are MFT Agents?

MFT agents provide real-time, remote file transfer capabilities that are controlled from a central MFT server. Managed File Transfer Agents are ideal for organizations with remote sites like branch offices, cloud environments or other remote locations, where remote management of data movement from a single flagship location is required.

With GoAnywhere MFT agents, IT admins can:

  • Enjoy centralized control of remote file transfers and workflows
  • Create Agent Templates with registration rules to easily deploy Agents on a large scale
  • Monitor remote locations for new, modified and deleted files on the system

Need more information? Explore GoAnywhere MFT agents.

MFT Agents vs. Traditional MFT

There are a few key differences between traditional MFT deployments and an MFT Agent deployment. By deploying agents, network professionals can manage all instances of the deployment from one centralized location, versus having to manage multiple locations individually. This drastically reduces the amount of configuration time, and can present major cost benefits considering the reduction in administration time, management of software updates and other tasks.

MFT agent capability allows IT professionals to easily deploy MFT agents on almost any server or workstation where file transfers need to be performed (Windows, VMware, Linux, Amazon EC2, Microsoft Azure, IBM I (iSeries), AIX, UNIX, and Mac OS systems). With this multi-platform capability, organizations with complex environments can greatly reduce the manual, repeatable work associated with the complexity.

MFT Agent Applications & Use Cases

In an interview with Linoma Software [now HelpSystems] President and Chief Architect, Bob Luebbe, the wide application of MFT agents is explained. “The use cases for MFT agents are really endless. Whether it’s a franchise needing to synchronize files with its store locations, or a healthcare system needing to move PHI data between its data center and satellite clinics, the deployment of MFT agents will greatly simplify those processes,” he says.

Below are just a few use cases of Managed File Transfer agents:

  • Restaurant Franchises: Whether a restaurant chain has thousands of locations worldwide, or a handful of regional locations, MFT agents allow for the distribution of new proprietary recipes, pricing updates and other sensitive data to and from the remote locations - easily and securely.
  • Retail Stores: Retail organizations with a network of stores can now manage new season inventory updates, product launch information, changes to employee policies and more, all through one centralized solution.
  • Healthcare Providers: Healthcare clinics with multiple satellite locations can ensure PHI data is securely transferred between locations, pharmacies and other partners using MFT agents.
  • Insurance Agencies: Enrollment applications, new products and services, and pricing structure updates can all be transferred quickly and securely.

In any use case, MFT agents can run on systems inside an organization’s network to move files throughout the data center, or can be deployed to remote sites like branch offices, cloud environments like Amazon AWS, Azure, and other remote locations. GoAnywhere MFT Agents even allow users to create and schedule multi-step workflows that can copy files, archive files, translate data, send alerts, add data to a database, execute native commands, or perform other file system tasks.

The image below shows an example implementation model, where one agent is deployed to an internal network, two are deployed to remote locations and one is deployed to a cloud environment.

Imagine the possibilities if organizations could greatly reduce the time spent on manual file transfer processes, and reallocate those resources towards more strategic initiatives.

Could MFT agents be a fit for your organization? Schedule a demo, contact a product specialist at [email protected]

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