Sunday, July 19, 2009

Unix Admin Mantra - "Only the paranoid survives"

I am not a Unix admin. I had to pick it up due to the fact that I'm working on a small start-up company. I quickly learned that the mantra of Andrew Grove from Intell, "Only the paranoid survives" best fit for this type of job. System admins need to be ahead of the curve. The other day, I went to restart the only windowns server that I have and noticed an error in one of my Unix servers. The message was that I had a bad memory chip. How can I check if everything is OK, specially since my server are in a data center? Then I found out from Linux Journal that I can use SNMP and Nagios to get this type of monitoring. I will be playing with it along as with Ruby for the next couple of weeks. I hope to get status of memory modules, fans, and power supplies in each of my servers.
SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) is a network protocol designed for monitoring network-attached devices. It uses OIDs (Object IDentifiers) for defining the information,
known as MIBs (Management Information Base), that can be monitored. The design is extensible, so vendors can define their own items to be monitored

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