Author Archive for Nicholas Scott

Major Improvements to Agent-Based Monitoring with the Release of Nagios Cross-Platform Agent — NCPA

Major improvements to agent-based monitoring have been taking place at Nagios Enterprises. NCPA, the Nagios Cross-Platform Agent, is a project that has the potential to revolutionize agent-based monitoring and increase the efficiency of IT support teams world-wide.

As many Nagios users know, monitoring with agents means juggling the installation of many different types of plugins to try and match devices, operating systems, and the basic functions of each agent. For example, in a simple agent-based Linux and Windows server environment you have to install 2 agents, know the 2 user manuals, there are 2 times the troubleshooting hours required, 2 times the commands on remote systems, 2 change logs to sift through for potential update breaks…the list goes on. It can be very difficult to keep organized and take a lot of time to implement and update your configuration, especially when your monitoring environment becomes larger and more complex.

Whether your environment is large or small, there are usually a myriad of devices that need to be monitored and more often than not, some sort of agent needs to be installed on these devices.

Wouldn’t it be simple if you only had to install one agent regardless of operating system or device?

We have been working on a project that aims to do this. Nagios Cross-Platform Agent (NCPA) is a fully contained agent that runs on Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux and seeks to solve all of the previously mentioned pitfalls of agent based monitoring with Nagios. The main goal of NCPA was to monitor the core metrics of a server and other devices without the added hassle of plugins and dependencies. Metrics such as CPU Usage, Disk Usage, Memory Usage, Interface Usage, Swap Usage, User Count, etc. are preloaded in NCPA so that all you have to do is install the agent. It has since broadened in scope to be a general purpose agent that is very good at doing the aforementioned job. Just install the NCPA agent on your system, and away you go.

Features & Benefits of NCPA:

-Installs on multiple platforms : Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and FreeBSD (untested on AIX, HPUX and Solaris)
-Real-time performance graphs and GUI configuration
-Fully contained agent, including dependencies
-Identical cross-platform configuration editing for both active and passive agents
-Minimizes knowledge needed to know down to one
-Advanced visual data representation

Direct links to the NCPA .exe and .rpm files can be found in the installation instructions which can be downloaded at the link below: Installing NCPA.pdf

We are very excited about this new agent and are currently looking for real world testers to try it out. To test NCPA please contact nscott@nagios.com. Thanks!

Nagios SNMP Trap Interface – NSTI v2.0

NSTI version 2.0 has officially been released.  After a lot of hard work, and many feature-rich additions, the Nagios SNMP Trap Interface has been overhauled to include some major performance increases and greater ease-of-use.

The User Interface has been reimagined and streamlined to make exploring and managing SNMP traps much easier.  The functionality of NSTI 2.0 is not hidden within various menus, but exposed on the main GUI to reveal the capabilities of NSTI.  This allows you to parse through streams of SNMP traps more quickly and efficiently.

NSTI Interface

While creating a more straight-forward version of NSTI, advanced functionality was not forgotten.  NSTI 2.0 provides users with a dedicated screen for each trap that presents all of the data that has been captured from that trap.  This allows for the advanced trap information to be accessed easily without cluttering the main NSTI page.

SNMP Trap Information - NSTI

Improvements have also been made to NSTI’s ability to integrate with existing Nagios XI implementations. Integration with Nagios XI makes it easier for system admins to manage and stay on top of SNMP trap information.

  • NSTI now has the ability to write SNMP trap information directly to the Nagios XI server.  This allows checks to be made for unread SNMP traps, and for admins to be alerted to traps based on their status (Critical, Warning, Unknown).
  • Previous SNMP trap management within Nagios XI only showed the last trap that was received, but now NSTI allows you to view all old traps and let the Nagios server know which ones have yet to be read.  This assists the user in keeping track of all historical SNMP trap data.
  • Another major improvement made to NSTI is its ability to force hostname information and sync it with the Nagios XI server.  This allows admins to easily correlate SNMP trap information with the corresponding host on the network, and eliminating tedious sorting of traps and crucial information falling through the cracks.   NSTI Hostname Integration

Please contact nscott@nagios.com for any questions.

Nagios SNMP Trap Interface (NSTI) Available

 

Nagios SNMP Trap Interface has been uploaded to the nagios project SVN repo. Its goal is to make it easier to see what traps have arrived and provides a sane way to keep track of SNMP traps.
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Monitor WatchGuard Devices Using Nagios XI Wizard

WG Graphs

In an effort to make NagiosXI even easier to setup while maintaining granularity, we are creating wizards for specific devices. Methods for monitoring network devices are not one size fits all. SNMP mibs differ and web interfaces differ, so we’ve embarked on an adventure of writing wizards for specific vendors of devices. The wizard recently completed is an example of that adventure.
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