Network Monitor Software Open Source – In 2015, we reviewed the best free networking tools you should have. And honestly, these reviews have stood the test of time. But now that time has passed, the landscape has changed and we think it’s worth revisiting those old solutions and perhaps adding some new ones.
To build a network, you start with an architecture, draw a design, and analyze and select hardware that meets your requirements. Since many organizations need their network up and running to generate revenue, it’s important to have the right tools to monitor and manage the one you’ve created with so much love.
Network Monitor Software Open Source
But how do you find the best network monitoring tools when there are hundreds of commercial products, free tools, and open source software to choose from? While the free vs. commercial debate rages on, there are tried and tested free network monitoring tools that many network administrators swear by. We share some of our favorites with you below.
Kibana: Explore, Visualize, Discover Data
Open source options are great and can even be compatible with commercial tools, but you should be aware that using open source monitoring requires a high level of commitment to a tool that may not suit your needs perfectly. As the saying goes, open source is only free if your time is worthless.
Open source monitoring solutions often require a significant investment in time and resources. Missing features may need to be built using community support or an internal IT team. A second consideration is security, which can be an issue depending on the device you choose and your industry’s security guidelines. Also, quick custom solutions are not available unless you take the time to develop and maintain them yourself.
If you are looking for a robust and affordable network monitoring tool that offers a high level of automation and insights and less manual input than an open source solution, SolarWinds® ipMonitor® may be the best choice for you. ipMonitor offers scalable network monitoring for your entire network in an easy-to-use, lightweight and fast solution to help reduce downtime and reduce the time you spend manually monitoring your network.
The tool’s initial wizard guides you through the process of configuring alerts and automatic detection, so you can quickly start getting information about your network. ipMonitor also offers out-of-the-box recommendations for what you should monitor on each of your apps and devices.
It Network Inventory
One of the reasons someone might want to use a free network monitoring solution is because they fear a paid solution. In fact, paid network monitoring tools are often much easier to use than their free counterparts. This is certainly true when it comes to ipMonitor, whose user-friendly interface helps you quickly identify current (and potential) problems so you can get to the bottom of them before they cause more problems for your network. ipMonitor makes sure you never miss a beat with its powerful, configurable alert system. With more than a dozen different built-in notification types, ipMonitor helps you ensure that the right people on your team are aware of potential problems as soon as the tool detects them.
IpMonitor is an affordable option for businesses of all sizes, but if you’re not sure if you want to commit to a paid tool, you can try a free 14-day trial to see if the tool is right for your needs.
When we need a network monitoring tool that’s easy to install and supports monitoring and reporting out of the box, we like SolarWinds® Network Performance Monitor (NPM). NPM works as a single panel to provide complete and comprehensive network monitoring capabilities that complement some of the basic free tools you already use.
As enterprise networks grow larger and more complex, it is important to implement network monitoring and management solutions early in the implementation phase.
Application Performance Monitoring & Error Tracking Software
If you decide to go the Open/Open Source route, you should check out the following. This is our list of the best free network monitoring tools available today.
Nagios is popular due to its active development community and external plugin support. You can create and use external plugins in executable or Perl form
And shell scripts to monitor and collect metrics from any hardware and software used on the network. There are plugins that provide an easier and better GUI, solving many limitations in the core
Another monitoring warhorse that endures as a tool for network monitoring needs. It allows you to collect data from any network element, including routing and switching systems and firewalls, and puts that data into robust graphs. If you have a device, the active Cacti developer community may have created a monitoring template for it.
It Infrastructure Monitoring Made Easy
Cactus supports SNMP polling, which itself covers a wide range of network devices. You can extend Cacti to use scripts, queries, or commands to collect data and save them as a template to use to query other tools for similar data sets. Cacti harnesses the power of RRDTool, an open source data logging and graphing system, to create graphs from collected datasets. RRDTool’s data integration allows you to store collected data permanently and is only limited by the size of your storage. Cacti allows you to add multiple users and grant access with or without edit permissions, ideal for service providers and enterprises with large NOC teams.
It comes with a simple and clean GUI that makes it easy to operate once you get the hang of it. Zabbix supports agentless monitoring using SNMP, ICMP, Telnet, SSH, etc. technologies and agent based monitoring for all Linux
The monitoring capabilities allow you to customize using any scripting or programming language, which is widely considered to be its best feature.
Ntop, now ntopng (next generation ng), is a traffic probe that uses libpcap (for packet capture) to report network traffic. You can install ntopng on a server with multiple interfaces and use port mirroring or network tapping to feed ntopng with network data packets for analysis. ntopng can analyze traffic even at 10G speeds; report on IP addresses, volume and bytes per transaction; traffic segmentation based on IP, port and protocol; generate usage reports; See the best speakers; and report AS information. This level of traffic analysis helps you make informed decisions about capacity planning and QoS design, and helps you find bandwidth-hungry users and applications on the network. ntopng has a commercial version called ntopng pro with some additional features, but the open source version is good enough to get a quick idea of traffic behavior. ntop can integrate with external monitoring applications such as Nagios to alert and provide monitoring data.
Design And Development Of An Open Source Framework For Citizen Centric Environmental Monitoring And Data Analysis
Ntopng has some limitations, but the level of network traffic visibility it provides is worth the effort.
Built on top of MySQL and PostgreSQL, Icinga is backwards compatible with Nagios, meaning that if you have an investment in Nagios scripts, you can port them relatively easily.
Nagios was created by the same group of developers in 2009, so they knew their stuff. Since then, developers have made great strides in expanding both functionality and usability. As Nagios’ pedigree suggests, its primary focus is infrastructure and service monitoring.
Spiceworks offers many free IT management tools, including inventory management, help desk workflow, and cloud monitoring, in addition to the network monitoring solution I’m focusing on here. Built on agentless techniques such as WMI (for Windows machines) and SNMP (for network and *nix systems), this free tool provides insight into many network performance issues. You can set custom notifications and restart services from the app.
How To: Free Network Monitoring With Prtg
Note that Spiceworks is free, most of its revenue comes from selling ad displays on its network. It’s a small price to pay for a free solution, but something to think about before you install.
Observium “freemium” model is now supported by most of the open source community – a core set of free features, with additional options if you pay. Although the “community” version (ie, free) supports an unlimited number of devices, Observium is still careful to state that it is intended for home lab use. This is supported by the fact that the free version cannot go through a single server. Run it on your corporate network at your own risk!
The free version also enjoys a 6-month patch and update cycle. If you want fast fixes twice a year, you have to pay for them. The most painful feature held back from the free version is the lack of alerting capabilities. Those caveats aside, you get full auto-discovery of your devices and metrics (using SNMP and standard protocols as usual).
Some tools aren’t monitoring solutions per se, but are so incredibly useful for monitoring professionals that we didn’t think it would be right to leave them out.
Percona Monitoring And Management
An open source packet analyzer that uses libpcap (*nix) or Winpcap (Windows) to capture packets and display them on its graphical frontend.
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