Computer monitoring software enables systems and applications of all kinds to be watched autonomously, so that the state of a system is continuously known. If the hardware, software, or the operating system is not functioning properly, the system administrator needs to be alerted at the earliest opportunity to ensure fast problem resolution. Using monitoring software, technical staff can often take remedial action at the first sign of a problem, before business processes, end-users, or customers are even aware that there is an issue.
There are a number of different elements that need to be monitored in an organisation’s mission-critical IT infrastructure. These include network protocols, applications, services including remote services, daemons, servers, and the network infrastructure itself. A monitoring tool needs to have a large feature set if it is to be a one stop solution.
It is common for monitoring solutions to be released in open source and proprietary versions, with the open source version typically offering basic IT monitoring capabilities, and the paid-for software adding additional functionality.
The feature 9 of the Best Free Linux System Monitoring Tools, written in July 2009, highlighted our personal picks in open source monitoring software at that time. However, there has been significant developments since that article was published. We have witnessed other applications which have stepped up to the mark, offering high quality solutions for monitoring services, services and network hardware. The purpose of this article is therefore to identify these applications omitted from the original article, all of which are also definitely worth evaluating.
To provide an insight into the quality of software available for Linux, we have compiled a list of 6 more of the best free monitoring tools. Hopefully, there will be something of interest here for anyone who needs to monitor servers, devices, and ensure that a computing system maintains high performance. We give our highest recommendation to Zabbix.
Now, let’s explore the 6 monitoring tools. For each title we have compiled its own portal page, a full description with an in-depth analysis of its features, screenshots, together with links to relevant resources and reviews.
|Zabbix||Enterprise-Class Distributed Monitoring solution|
|Zenoss Core||Application, server and network management platform|
|Hyperic||Systems monitoring, server monitoring, and IT management software|
|Ganglia||Scalable distributed monitoring system for high-performance computing system|
|Cacti||RRDTool-based network graphing solution|
|Monitorix||Lightweight monitoring tool for servers and embedded devices|
Read our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. The collection covers all categories of software.
The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There's tons of in-depth reviews, alternatives to Google, fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.