Nagios XI eval – final thoughts

Meh.

That’s my current overall rating for Nagios XI.  I currently have 41 days remaining of the 60-day free evaluation; having been a user of the free Nagios solution for several years, coupled with my 19 days (and counting) experience with XI, I now present my observations on the products…

Pros

The biggest – and possibly only – pro to running the $1,295 Nagios XI solution is the relative ease of installation and, more importantly, the ability to auto-discover nodes on the network.  In the free version, I remember the installation being a bit more tedious.  (I say “I remember” because it’s been a few years since I’ve had to install it.)  I do also vividly recall that configuration of the product to monitor the nodes was fully manual, and involved editing flat files in a text editor.  So, for those who want to monitor their infrastructures with a minimal amount of effort, XI is the way to go (if you have the cash).

Cons

Believe it or not, I consider the relative ease of installation and the automation pieces to be cons.  Why?  Because as a result of all of the work being done in the background, nerd Mike has absolutely no idea how the product works at a technical level.  The effort I was required to undertake to get the free version up and running resulted in my acquiring a high level of knowledge and skill relative to how the product operates.  In short, it made me something of an SME (subject matter expert) on Nagios.  I like that, because if something in the product goes “bump”, it’s a good bet that I’ll know where to look.  With XI, not so much.

Database Backend is perpetually down — say it ain’t so!

Real world example – I had to bounce the VM on which XI is running.  Ever since the reboot, the database backend has been in alarm (see attached image).  There’s a button next to the alarm that allows one to start the database.  Does it work?  Of course not!  Do I know how to fix it?  Of course not!!

And so it goes.

Summary

I’m stickin’ with the free version, which I’ll need to (re)install at some point and so expect some fascinating articles on that effort as it unfolds in the near future!

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