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Open Source Network Managment Software? 8

Posted by Cliff
from the when-simple-tools-just-can't-handle-your-network dept.
A loner from the Anonymous Coward Network asks: "I do systems administration for a company with a relatively large and complex all Cisco network. Our company has grown tremendously in a very short period of time and the network has had to grow with it. The collection of simple tools just don't cut it anymore and I've been asked to research commercial network management systems. Most of the ones we've evaluated so far have been very expensive, and none of them properly handle all aspects of our network. Being closed source and proprietary there is nothing you could do with any of these but live with whats been provided, or hope the vendor would make the needed changes, (and hope we can afford the cost of them doing so). Are there any good Open Source network management packages out there? In particular, is there anything written that takes layer 2 switching into consideration, or gathers and correlates spanning tree information?"
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Open Source Network Managment Software?

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    So true.
    I have heard it said that Open Source Software is all about scratching itches. Considering the unwashed nature of many hacker-geeks, one might think that there would be many itches to scratch. In practice it seems that either the geeks are more hygienic than previously thought, or they prefer to scratch itches which are more immediately enjoyable.
    The evidence favors the second theory. Geeks have a well-known preference for 'cool shit' (cool shit is a trademark of the Mozilla joke^H^H^H^Hteam) - cool shit could be looked upon as a sort of digital masturbation, achieving relief through code. This line of reasoning is supported by the aversion females often display towards nerds, leaving the nerds to 'entertain' themselves. How many times have you heard a geek say, "I love my Palm!"?. Too many for it to be a mere coincidence, that's for certain.
    It seems the less cool and exciting projects require the firm guiding hand of 'Cathedral' style development, though it could be argued (based on current Open Source projects) that all development is best done in the Cathedral form - with code quality checks and the, if you ask an Open Source nerd, mythical, debugging that is required to produce truly high quality code.
    Looking to Open Source to solve your computing problem was, is, and shall remain utterly futile.
    Good day to you.
  • You could look at zebra and try and roll your own from the source code (see the GNU site) but I really think your going to better off spending the dollars.

    The few open source network monitoring tools I've seen have been very crude and become commercial anyway. I've looked for them under Linux, Solaris and HP-UX. So there may be a *BSD type or NT solution but they were not viable for the last place this was needed. If you find a good open source one please let us all know. Or hopefully my ignorance will be erased by someone with a better background.

  • by Chaostrophy (925) <ronaldpottol AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday January 10, 2001 @02:45PM (#515235) Homepage Journal
    http://www.opennms.org/

    It is led by a guy who was an HP OpenView developer, then a consultant for iplementing it, then he decided to make something that actually worked, and was open.

    Currently at version 0.4.1
  • OpenNMS. Read the latest update on it here: http://linuxtoday.com/news_story.php3?ltsn=2001-01 -10-005-04-OS-SW [linuxtoday.com]
  • You might want to give netsaint [netsaint.org] a look. It is more of a host monitoring tool, but numerous extensions have been developed for it, so it could be a good base to build upon or integrate with thing like OpenNMS.
    -----
  • My favorite 'NMS' program is definitely MRTG [ee.ethz.ch] which produces many interesting graphics but may not fit your needs. But, if you have some time, you can program your own shell script that may ask your cisco switches some info ...

    Anyway, OpenNMS is also fine and maybe you can be interested in Extreme Happy Netflow Tool" [sourceforge.net], more related to cisco and netflow.

    For spanning tree info, I don't see anyhting but I don't see everything too so ...

    Slightly off-topic : if you want see MRTG graphics, just have a look at our Student network [fpms.ac.be] or the Linux box who is currently on his knees because of users (P133 - 32 Mo RAM with apache, squid, mysql, ...

  • well, I am usnig various tools. As of yet I haven't found one package that does it all, but a lot of small programs that make an pretty nice package. I don't know what you mean exactly with Networkmanagment/I think there a different meanings which all focus on differnet areas of networking)

    Netsaint [netsaint.org] I think netsaint i very cool. I.t checks for services in various network devices therefore reporting on uptime etc.. Sends out emails if one device goes down and so on. Very configurable. Love it, also ties in nicely with Cricket(link the devices with their respective cricket pages).A reporting tool for netsaint(Impress your boss!!)here [easynet.fr]

    Cricket [sourceforge.net] bases on rrdtool [ee-staff.ethz.ch] which is written by Tobi Oetikers(the guy who wrote MRTG. If you look at the rrdtool page you see various other frontends, I just happen to like cricket. Great for graphing routers and switches(and pretty much else) through snmp(you can configure it to graph other things, for example their is a package that creates graphs of the RTA's of devices in netsaint(look at the cricket contrib page.

    ntop [ntop.org] ntop, a sniffe with a web based interfaces(and a console one) were nice for monitoring various aspects of parts the network. Check out one of the newer cvs snapshots

    I haven't had time to check out OpenNMS yet. Another nice tool is ethereal [zing.org], a awesome gui sniffer.
    One thing that is especially great about netsaint and cricket and netsaint is the great number of 3rd party addons, which make life a lot easier

  • Here are the tools I have used in the past and recommend. Don't have URLs handy:
    Big brother
    opennms
    mrtg
    sendpage

    Opennms is under heavy development. Grand plans, great progress

    Looked at, never implemented. seemed promising:
    gxsnmp
    hnms (hierarchical network management system?)

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