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August 18, 2006

SUSE Linux running Nagios is pretty cool

by @ 7:03 am. Filed under General SUSE, Work-Related

I have had an absolute blast today. I’ve always heard about how wickedly powerful Nagios is. However, I’ve also heard many versions of different horror stories about how people lost an arm to Nagios when they tried to install it. My friend Steve now has a glass eye from his ordeal with it.

Naturally, of course, not wanting to lose an arm or an eye, I’ve steered clear from Nagios for a while. That being said, my manager came to me the other day and asked me, “Is there anything open-source that can monitor our servers to let us know when things go down?” I was like, “So, now you need Linux to babysit your Windows servers lest they crash?” After the chiding, I said, “Why yes, there is a tool called Nagios.” He said, “How soon can you get it installed?” I said, “About 2 weeks.” The painful look he gave me was priceless. After gleaning as much enjoyment as I could from it, I said, “Just kidding… but probably a day or two,” really having no idea because of what I’d heard about the installation.

The thing installed in about 15 minutes. Big whoop. Then came the configuration of that bad boy. Heh, there’s where I’m guessing people hit the wall. For some reason, it seems to me that if you’ve had experience with object-oriented programming, and relational database experience, the config files kinda sorta seem to just make sense. They did for me, anyway. YMMV.

I also wasn’t able to get the notifications to work, so I wrote my own scripts and plugged them in. They work beautifully. I set up a PING monitor for my desktop machine. I then spent the next 20 minutes turning the machine off and back on to watch the monitor go from CRITICAL to OK and back. Boy, simple minds have simple pleasures. Maybe that’s why my brother grew up eating crayons.


I also couldn’t find a MySQL monitor, so I just used the check_tcp monitor to connect to port 3306 on the target machine. I realize that this does not actually run a query on the database to see if it is actually working properly. However, it will tell me if the server is not running. Maybe I’ll fix that later. For now, it looks good to the untrained eye.

OK, well, I set up like 27 monitors on about 6 different machines. Fun day, tell you what.

Really it was not nearly as painful as I had been led to believe. Perhaps it was the tutorials that I used to get me started. Maybe I’ll write my own (for some reason, I get a charge out of writin’ good, clean, helpful tutorials) for anyone who may find it useful. The two tutorials I used were located on a CoolSolutions page and Between the two of those articles, from the time I started until the time I was monitoring the local machine was about 25 minutes. Not too shabby.

Oh, don’t forget to install openssl-devel before you do this, otherwise you won’t be able to check your HTTPS servers (using the check_http plugin).

If you dig screenshots, here’s one of my Nagios install in action:

Nagios on Linux in action
Click for larger image

4 Responses to “SUSE Linux running Nagios is pretty cool”

  1. Tristan Rhodes Says:


    Congrats on getting Nagios running, and making Linux look good in the process. I am very interested in all open source network management applications, so I will share some other projects that you might find useful.

    Zabbix – Open source solution for monitoring your IT infrastructure –

    Zenoss – Powerful, integrated, easy-to-use IT infrastructure monitoring software product – These guys just got $4.5 million in venture funding!

    GroundWork Open Source – Open Source IT Operations Management – This system is basically a front-end to Nagios, which can make it a lot easier to use. (They also sell a closed-source product, yuck!)

  2. Joshua Gray Says:

    No doubt about it, nagios rocks! A couple of things that make nagios really easy to get going

    1.) notification can be sent your cell phone by finding out your carrier’s sms gateway. i.e. for cingular, if you send an email to [phone_#] and you would receive a text message. A simple google search will get your company’s.

    2.) There is a prebuilt virtual machine for vmware here ( You will need to add an IP address and default gateway, openssl, and fix apt-get by going to /etc/apt/sources.list and enabling the http addresses and performing an “apt-get update”

  3. Scott Morris Says:

    Very nice suggestions! Thanks for stopping by.

  4. Sebuwufu Says:

    I wanted some one to help me and give make a step by step configurations of Nagios
    Nework monioring tool .
    i tried to configure it but it was giveing me errors.
    Any idears and help.I used suse enterprise server.
    Thnaks in advance.

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