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We are starting to have a few projects that have a design where a web server needs access to services/devices (think database connections and specialized hardware) that are on a local network. Instead of having users open up ports to the public internet, we are using a small program that establishes a connection from inside their network to connect to those devices and then establish a persistent connection that the server can use to request information from that program.

EDIT: Diagram

Diagram of the description

I've thought of a few terms, but I wasn't sure if there is a generally accepted term for such a program

  • Agent: This one seems kind of intuitive, but it seems like it means something else.
  • Proxy: Maybe, I typically think of a client connecting to a proxy, not the other way around.
  • Service: This indicates it's a long running process that does something in the background, but nothing specific about communication.
  • Sounds like a firewall to me. Or perhaps a proxy server. – Robert Harvey Feb 9 at 0:34
  • The user guide for AWS VPN contains a lot of terminology similar to your situation. However, they also use words for meanings that are somewhat different from the typical public usage of these words. Perhaps you can consult a few technical terminology sources and decide what definitions to use. – rwong Feb 9 at 0:43
  • I think the term is Trojan Horse, or simply Trojan. – ArTs Feb 9 at 4:09
  • I do not understand the communication relationship between the nodes from your description. You have a web server, devices and users. Who is requesting from whom and where are they all? A picture may help. – Martin Maat Feb 9 at 7:29
  • @ArTs, it's not malware. :P The software performs very specific functions and must be configured locally and pointed to the central server. – duckbrain Feb 13 at 18:36
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I don't know if there is an official or defacto term for this but some possible descriptive options are:

  • Delegate
  • Delegate agent
  • Proxy delegate
  • Attorney
  • Thanks for the suggestions. I hadn't considered the use of "delegate". I realize there may not be an answer to my question, marking this as the accepted answer unless someone can find a reference to a term that's used widely elsewhere. – duckbrain Feb 13 at 20:48
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I feel like the term 'worker' applies in your case, even though (to the best of my knowledge) it's generally used to describe software sub-tasks.

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