Idera Software program offers the Idera Uptime Infrastructure Monitor, which is a current integration of two merchandise previously generally known as the Up.time administration instrument and CopperEgg, respectively. Idera Uptime Infrastructure Monitor (which begins at $125 per gadget) can fulfill a number of IT administration duties together with infrastructure administration, community monitoring, and software efficiency administration (APM). Mix these options with the huge base of supported platforms and you’ve got an entire monitoring bundle.
Idera can also be a platform that helps hybrid IT environments, that means those who have to handle on-site infrastructure in addition to digital infrastructure housed in an off-presmises public cloud. Nevertheless, whereas it covers the monitoring of Amazon Internet Providers (AWS) digital infrastructure, and it could possibly additionally deal with the Hyper-V and VMWare hypervisors, it does not but do Microsoft Azure. Still, Idera’s solution is definitely worth considering if you’re looking for a one-product-fits-all infrastucture management solution. However, it did not win our Editors’ Choice award in this category, a distinction we gave instead to MMSoft Pulseway.
Idera Uptime Infrastructure Monitor gives you the option of agentless monitoring for Windows using Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) and VMware ESXi. However, a Windows agent provides more in-depth information, and you’ll need to install an agent to monitor other platforms in any case. The list of supported platforms includes all of the main Linux distributions, Solaris SPARC and x86, AIX and HP-UX for ia64, and PA-RISC.
Monitoring applications starts with something as simple as a network Ping command. However, installed agents give much deeper access to operating system (OS) parameters which can, in turn, be monitored as a part of an application. One example would be to monitor the Web server process on either a Windows or Linux box as a way of tracking the performance of an application. Windows services can also be monitored to ensure critical infrastructure components continue to function.
Idera Uptime Infrastructure Monitor uses a plug-in concept (as does several of the other products in this roundup such as Ipswitch WhatsUp Gold and ManageEngine OpManager) to enhance its base features. A total of 89 plug-ins can be downloaded from the-grid website to add features such as log file monitoring, an IBM SAN SVC health monitor, a NetApp SnapMirror monitor, and many more.
All management information is processed and presented by the Uptime server application. Versions are available for both Windows and Linux, and you’ll need a pretty beefy machine for a large datacenter environment. Idera recommends a system with 128GB of RAM and 24 cores or virtual CPUs for monitoring 5,000 elements. For 1,000 elements, they recommend 32GB and 8 cores or vCPUs. Idera provides a good set of resources including a YouTube video to help you get the software installed.
I tested the installation on a Windows Server 2012 R2 virtual machine (VM) and was able to get the software up and running in under 10 minutes. One of the first things I had to accomplish after installing Idera Uptime Infrastructure Monitor was the discovery process. Depending on the structure of the network, this could take some time. What essentially happens is a ping sweep of network addresses in order to identify systems of interest along with using SNMP and WMI to gather details about the system. Figure 1 shows step two of the Auto Discovery process with the default settings selected.
I did run into a minor glitch when the software didn’t recognize my HP Procurve 3800 switch as a network device. The fix was to delete the entry and then add it in manually. Once that was done, the software provided all of the information I expected for a network switch.
Once you install an agent for deeper information Uptime really shines with agents for a wide range of operating systems (see Figure 1). I tested the installable agents on both Windows and Linux virtual machines. Connecting to Amazon requires the entry of your Amazon credentials. Similarly, you’ll need to have the administrator name and password in order to add a VMware vCenter server.
Service monitors facilitate the monitoring of key infrastructure components such as a specific host computer or a service on a virtual machine. Alert profiles can be attached to a service monitor in order to generate notifications in the event of a problem. Action profiles make it possible to take an action by executing a script in the case of an alert. With just a few mouse clicks, I was able to create a new service profile and start monitoring the IIS Web service on one of my test servers in short order.
Data and Dashboards
Once agents have been installed and the discovery process completed you will see a Dashboards page with information organized using a number of tabs including details about the current status of your system. The first default tab is labeled Global Scan (see Figure 2) and displays the current service status in graphical form along with a quick summary of warnings and alerts for monitored elements. I would like to be able to click on any of the red-colored elements, which indicates a critical error, and go directly to a page with information about the error. Figure 3 shows the Resource Scan tab which uses gauges and graphs to show performance numbers along with tabular data for each resource on the lower part of the screen.
Monitoring an AWS account requires the installation of a plug-in which also depends on the installation of Python and one additional library. While this isn’t a huge deal, it does require a number of additional steps not required by other products such as ManageEngine OpManager and Ipswitch Whatsup Gold. Monitoring of Microsoft Azure is limited at this time to individual virtual machines (VMs) where you must install the agent as you would with a physical server.
The Scrutinizer add-on displays network flow traffic by switch port number, TCP/UPD port number and by protocol. Figure 4 shows the main Dashboard page with my HP 3800 switch and the traffic by port. Clicking on a protocol in the lower left panel brings up a more detailed graphic showing specific IP addresses and data usage. The alarms tab is where you configure alarms to trigger when any network condition occurs which might adversely affect operations.
One of the better management features with Uptime is the creation of reports. Clicking on the Reports tab presents a long list of categories and reporting subjects down the left-hand side of the page. Selecting any individual report presents a form with fields specific to that report and a list of elements or groups to run the report against. Options for output include email, print to screen, or to a PDF or XML file.
List price for the main Uptime product is based on each monitored device with a starting price of $125 per device. The Scrutinizer add-on first tier is $4,495 for up to five routers. They also offer a virtual appliance for the same five routers for a price of $8,495.
Idera Uptime Infrastructure Monitor includes coverage in all three areas of this roundup, with the infrastructure management piece sticking out as the most feature complete. About the only thing missing from the infrastructure area is a direct connection into Microsoft’s Hyper-V management interface. Idera does not offer Uptime Infrastructure Monitor s a service so you will have to install everything on your own servers.