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We argue that a management platform for the future Internet has to be inherently distributed and programmable. This motivates us to introduce a new management architecture, named active distributed management, which exploits the active network and mobile agent paradigms and provides the properties of distributed control and programmability inside the network. We realize the ADM architecture as a management middleware composed of several layers. In order to facilitate the development of efficient and correct programs, these layers include patterns for distributed algorithms that are typical for management applications and a set of building blocks for constructing management programs. First results of an ADM prototype system are presented.