OpManager: the Swiss army knife of monitoring

AdventNet's OpManager, which starts at $795 per server and runs on Windows and Linux servers, is the Swiss army knife of monitoring and management tools.

AdventNet's OpManager, which starts at $795 per server and runs on Windows (2000, 2003 and XP) and Linux (Red Hat and Debian) servers, is the Swiss army knife of monitoring and management tools.

It expansively and comprehensively monitors virtually every possible network nook and cranny, including WAN links, servers, switches, routers, printers, Windows Event log entries, Web site URLs, TCP/IP services, specific applications, Windows Services, APC UPS devices, network and application performance and Active Directory.

OpManager includes a Management Information Base (MIB) browser for examining MIB entries of SNMP devices as well as a switch port mapper. It can also issue trouble tickets via AdventNet's help-desk product ServiceDesk Plus.

OpManager's device discovery didn't see one of our printers in one test (but did see it in a subsequent test). The software groups discovery results onto neatly organized maps of switches, printers and other devices. The switch map displays the status of each switch and its ports. The router map depicts the health of each interface.

OpManager's router-monitoring function collects more than 25 statistics from Cisco devices. The TCP/IP services function tracks activity for many common protocols (HTTP, FTP, SMTP, POP3, IMAP, DNS and others). Its application monitor baby-sits Microsoft Exchange, Lotus Notes, MySQL, Oracle and SQL Server.

It tells you if a Windows service has failed. The CPU, memory and disk space monitoring function lets you stay ahead of server-capacity problems. If you have lots of servers, you'll find OpManager's Top Ten view helpful -- it shows the busiest servers for CPU, memory and disk use.

When it detects a threshold violation, OpManager alerts you via e-mail and pager. It can send SNMP traps to another network management system such as OpenView, and its configurable problem-escalation rules make sure that someone in your company will learn that a problem has occurred. To correct the problem, OpManager can run a system command or execute an external program.

OpManager's abundance of reports and graphs reveal every possible network statistic or metric.

Nance runs Network Testing Labs and is the author of Introduction to Networking, 4th edition, and Client/Server LAN Programming. He can be reached at barryn@erols.com

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