Going beyond SNMP protocol monitoring

Por: Pedro César Tebaldi Gomes em 20.01.2014

Thanks to widespread adoption of SNMP protocol (Simple Network Management Protocol) already in the pre-Internet era, but post-TCP/IP, by large and small manufacturers of network equipment, it was possible to achieve an effective management of network equipment. SNMP allowed homogeneity in obtaining information about the status of network equipment and its hardware and software components. With the spread of SNMP in virtually all devices connected on a TCP / IP network, a wide range of products (commercial, freeware and open-source) also emerged for managing them. In this huge range of products there is software designed for managing small networks with a very affordable cost and even free of cost, until complex and expensive suites for managing large and complex data networks.

SNMP Protocol

SNMP is a very rich management protocol, but, like everything in IT, it is not a panacea for all the problems inherent in managing IT infrastructures. It is necessary to remember that the SNMP focus is on the network elements; even though it may possibly be extended to other applications, its use beyond the network becomes complex and very strict in handling and collecting information. If what is wanted is only to manage the data network, then probably the SNMP management applications are more than enough and simply the one that best fits the size of your network and your budget can be chosen. Another significant disadvantage of the SNMP is its protocol based on UDP, and not on TCP. Explaining, UDP is a protocol that does not require confirmation of delivery of the data, i.e., if for some reason the data is “lost” during transmitting, they cannot be recovered.

However, if you want to go beyond the network and manage an efficient and flexible IT environment as a whole, including its data network, it is best to seek a broader platform. The OpMon platform searches precisely to address the paradigm of going beyond SNMP management. Managing servers, applications and business processes is the main focus of the platform. Besides the basic functions of network management, OpMon provides advanced features, seeking to meet the needs of companies with respect to application management and its alignment with the company’s business. The focus of the platform is the availability of information on the status and availability of IT elements that support the company’s business, always aligned with the best practices in IT management.

The OpMon data collection agents have security mechanisms (encryption) and guarantee delivery because they are based on the TCP protocol. Moreover, the OpMon agents allow the construction of almost any search for information, unlike SNMP, which is quite complex (sometimes impossible) to be extended to the search for information that are not standardized or provided by the manufacturer. This ensures the OpMon agents a very large flexibility in building agents that meet the specific needs of an IT environment.

Because SNMP is a standard and widely available network equipment protocol, OpMon fully supports it and can easily manage the equipment using SNMP as, for example, network equipment, which does not permit the installation of OpMon agents or even for IT environments that wish to make their environment an “agent-less” monitoring mode. For monitoring Microsoft Windows platforms, OpMon allows the complete management of this platform by means of WMI (Windows Management Interface), which provides a rich instrumentation environment, much broader than the actual SNMP agent provided by Microsoft and available in Windows platforms.

The use of agents allows OpMon to move beyond SNMP for managing applications, especially when you want to monitor response times and availability of applications, a concept that OpServices heavily uses in the concept of CEM (Customer Experience Management). Remember, the SNMP focus is only on the network.

If you want a solution that “sees” your problems from a business point of view and not just of technology, OpMon is the platform of software and services that can help you obtain the necessary stability in your IT department to support the business processes of your company.

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