Weekly Snap: Nagios in Magna, Kempten, Saxony’s Public Attorney & T-Mobile plus NSClient++

weekly snapJan 18-22 was dominated by our project consulting team with Nagios monitoring left right and center.
Birger got around, visiting Magna in Thuringa, Kempten in Allgaeu and the Public Attorney in Saxony–Anhalt. In Thuringa, he threw praise on Magna’s orderly data center and software configurations during a Nagios consultation, and in Saxony-Anhalt did his bit for civil society in helping the Pubic Attorney get monitored by Nagios. In Kepmten Birger marvelled at their winter wonderland while on his way to fix a SNMP trap connection to EventDB by snmpd and snmptt.
With less travelling, but equal roaming, Manuela tipped off our latest success story on a massive network monitoring project achieved at T-Mobile. Check it out to see how Nagios is supporting your international data roaming on GSM when you travel.
To top off the Nagios theme, Michael introduced his NSClient++ blog series. He began with module groups: checkDisk (checks disk utilization), checkEventLog (checks entries in the eventlog), CheckSystem (checks processes, services, CPU utilization) and CheckHelpers (offers more ways of running checks). Each module is broken down into various sub-modules which carry out queries, and the parameterization of individual checks is similar. As he moves on with his series, Michael should cover installation, configuration and the running of several checks, which are communicated exclusively via encrypted NRPE to the monitored system. Keep posted!

Project of the month: Nagios to Oracle, SAP and AIX quick

buw_logoOctober 2009: When Bormann und Wulf from BuW first looked into Nagios they were looking for a quick and easy solution, out of the box. Upon meeting NETWAYS however, they decided against an appliance which promised plug and play monitoring for flexibility and independence in customization. After a streamline consulting visit from William to assist in system conception, the team at BuW were on their own till just this month.
They came this time to NETWAYS with a standard request – extend Nagios and quickly please. And this is what they got. Birger’s visit was short and smooth with all bases covered. From monitoring their Oracle and SAP clusters to AIX and installing EventDB and SNMP Trap Translator, all were integrated into a monitoring solution without a glitch.
The record speed project however, was only possible thanks to the fantastic coordination of the team at BuW. Upon Birger’s entrance to their Nagios scene, BuW already had good Debian foundations, an installed Oracle client, access rights and users set, as well as checks in CCMS for SAP fixed. With both sides well prepared, the entire project was achieved as fast as if it came straight out of the box.

Nagios at Tyrolit

Recently I visited one of our Austrian customers in the city of Schwaz. Tyrolit, part of the Swarovski Group and one of the world’s leading suppliers of abrasives, are based there.
In common with most large companies their IT department needs to respond 24×7 to any serious problems, and they have a weekly on-call rota for the system administrators.
As always with Nagios, there is more than one way to solve this – one of the most popular being to send all alerts to a single email address and/or ‘phone number which is passed to whomever has the rota. It’s a simple and fairly easy way to manage the problem, especially if you use one of the managed group-call-number services available on the market (e.g. Vodafone CorporateVPN). One of the biggest disadvantages however is that you can no longer find out who received the alert. Plus you are adding another point-of-failure into the notification chain.
For some customers I would recommend handing all notifications to an external handler (e.g. NoMa), which offers a simple configuration GUI; but it wasn’t suitable in this case – so we decided to send the alerts to a Nagios contact group and built a small webpage to manage this group and create Nagios configuration files. With a couple of mouse clicks the Admin-on-Call can be changed.
This is one of the strengths of Nagios. The ability to easily expand the functionality with a script if need be. Which reminds me: I must upload it to www.NagiosExchange.org