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What is the best server monitoring software to use? - WebHostingBuzz US Blog
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What is the best server monitoring software to use?

CAT6 cables in Gigabit switch

Posted on 19 May 2012 by Tavis.H

When you are a system administrator, responsible for maintaining a dedicated server or VPS, you come to learn that your server is constantly under the threat of attack. It may be from malware, denial of service (DoS), brute force attacks, SQL injection, cross-site scripting (XSS), botnets, phishing schemes, or any number of other nefarious cyber crimes.

To make matters even more complicated, your server may unknowingly be under attack from within. A simple glitch in a piece of code, a faulty installation of software, a troublesome network connection, or just the accumulation of corrupted data can lead to problems.

CAT6 cables in Gigabit switch

The best way to avoid problems, whether from security breaches or from network errors, is to monitor your server closely. All server operating systems and software provide log files and other regular information about their status and any problems or errors they encounter, but to really analyze that information and stay abreast on any developments, you need server monitoring software.

It is difficult to say which monitoring system is the best, as they each have their own unique feature set and benefits. What we can provide you with, however, is a list.

Free and Open Source Monitoring Software

This software is free to use, distribute, and modify, giving you the ultimate flexibility.

Nagios – Nagios can monitor your operating system, applications, services, network protocols, infrastructure components, and just about everything else you have. This is great if you need an all-in-one solution.

Ganglia – Ganglia is ideal for monitoring robust systems like clusters and grids. It uses advanced technologies for its monitoring, such as “XML for data representation, XDR for compact, portable data transport, and RRDtool for data storage and visualization”.

Cacti – This free network monitoring software leverages RRDtool to graph network installations and provide you with valuable information.

Commercial Monitoring Software

This software is proprietary and costs money, but when it comes to protecting your server, it might be worth it.

Zenoss – Zenoss provides real-time network monitoring on a wide variety of devices, including virtual ones. It can monitor on even the largest networks with 10,000 or more devices.

Orion Network Performance Monitor – When you need to monitor and also diagnose problems with your network or data center, Solarwinds Orion provides real-time dashboards allowing you to visually track your network.

Server Density – Server Density is an online service that provides monitoring of server load time, disk monitoring, website status, and the aggregation of various server data. Most importantly, it sends alerts when there is a problem to your mobile devices, such as iPhone or Android phones.

As you can see, there are plenty of options for server monitoring, and these just begin to scratch the surface. These tools are primarily designed to show you trouble spots so that you can deal with them before they get out of hand, but you can also use them to help fine tune your server and network for optimum performance.

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