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O’Reilly Network: Linux in the Enterprise — Infrastructure Monitoring

“One of the most important areas that you will need to tackle if
you are planning on deploying Linux systems in an enterprise
environment is how to integrate the Linux systems into any existing
infrastructure monitoring tools.”

“At first blush, this might seem like an easy task — after all,
Linux suppports SNMP (the Simple Network Management Protocol) —
but SNMP alone is, for real-world applications, a way-point on
a journey and not a destination unto itself. Even though Linux
supports SNMP, tools are still needed to make that capability
useful.
The ability to look at SNMP variables or walk through
SNMP MIB by hand isn’t gonna cut it. What most people want in a
network monitoring and management tool is something that lets them
see a nice graphical representation of their network and other
facilities and supports a lot of automated, scripted interfaces to
manage the systems with a minumum of effort.”

“Most large data centers use tools such as IBM’s Tivoli,
Computer Associates’ UniCenter, or Hewlett-Packard’s OpenView to
monitor systems and give operations staff control over the systems
and applications running on them. Fortunately, if you’re inclined
to buy such applications rather than build, all of these products
are available for Linux systems. Unfortunately, Linux systems are
supported as clients that can be monitored rather than as
monitoring systems themselves, but half a loaf is better than
none.”

Complete
Story