Monitor your data center with PRTG
Data centers need to function reliably and efficiently around the clock. However, this is only possible when the entire infrastructure of a data center is measured and monitored in detail. Monitoring not only allows for the prompt detection of problems, but also makes it possible to predict the impact of planned modifications to the infrastructure. And when it comes to optimizing a data center, nothing less will do.
Modern data centers therefore rely on data center infrastructure monitoring (DCIM) and data center monitoring software such as PRTG.
What does the infrastructure of a typical data center look like?
A data center is usually made up of the following:
1. Server room
The server room is home to the primary IT infrastructure, i.e., hardware such as servers and server racks, and sometimes the telephone system. Since the servers are close together, this room must be cooled.
2. Room for supporting technology and technical equipment
Server rooms must be protected from excess heat and humidity. Among other things, the technical room therefore contains an air-conditioning system that cools the server room, the uninterruptible power supply (UPS), and fire-extinguishing equipment.
3. Technical and organizational protection measures
Server rooms must also be protected against dirt, fire, flooding, and unauthorized access. Technical protection measures include airlocks, security cameras, and smoke-proof doors and windows, which should also be secured against burglars. Access to the server room is usually controlled by guidelines and access controls.
What is data center infrastructure monitoring?
Data center infrastructure monitoring (DCIM) involves the planning, managing, and monitoring of a data center infrastructure
and all the IT components and systems installed therein. Data center infrastructure management is multifaceted:
2. Data center and building infrastructure
Among other things, the physical infrastructure of the data center and building includes:
- The power supply
- The management of cables
- The cooling of the server room
- The optimal use of space
3. IT security
Data centers should be protected against:
- Viruses, Trojans, and DDoS attacks
- Fire and water
- Unauthorized access
Data center infrastructure performance monitoring ensures that the performance of the servers, applications and services meets the requirements. If this performance is poor over a longer period of time, consideration should be given to upgrading the infrastructure.
All these elements must be monitored thoroughly. This includes the monitoring of the status of hardware and the availability of applications and services, as well as the monitoring of the temperature and humidity in a server room.
Why is data center infrastructure monitoring important?
Data center monitoring is important because you not only need to monitor the IT infrastructure itself, but also your supporting technology (fire protection systems, power supply, etc.) and the systems that provide for physical IT security (surveillance cameras, access gates, etc.).
Data center monitoring tasks
Collect, analyze, and evaluate infrastructure data
Comprehensive data center monitoring can prevent downtime caused by problems in the data center.
Assess and monitor performance
A data center should be operated as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible. Data collected by way of monitoring can improve the capacity and performance of the data center.
Optimize power and energy consumption
By monitoring power and air-conditioning systems, IT teams can make informed decisions to optimize temperatures and the consumption of energy. This also involves improving the planning and utilization of the space and infrastructure of the building.
What about distributed data centers?
For many companies, housing their own server rooms and data centers can be difficult or even unfeasible. In particular, they often lack the required amount of security. They can also find it challenging to meet the necessary standards for data protection and IT security. And let’s not forget the high costs associated with the operation of such rooms. Finally, it may simply be that the company lacks the space.
A distributed data center (i.e., the outsourcing of a server room) proves in these cases to be beneficial. For one thing, distributed data centers are a lot less expensive. Although rental costs must be paid, the service provider takes care of security, the power supply, and cooling. Tip: PRTG can also be used to monitor IT in distributed locations!
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How does PRTG monitor data center infrastructures?
How PRTG defines sensors
In PRTG, “sensors” are the basic monitoring elements. One sensor usually monitors one measured value in your network, e.g. the traffic of a switch port, the CPU load of a server, the free space of a disk drive. On average you need about 5-10 sensors per device or one sensor per switch port.
PRTG Enterprise Monitor is the perfect tool for monitoring your in-house or outsourced data center. With a PRTG Enterprise Monitor subscription license, you can install PRTG on an unlimited number of servers to easily monitor all your sites. The software uses PRTG sensors to monitor each and every infrastructural aspect of your data center. Preconfigured sensors for DCIM include the following:
Monitoring Rittal CMC III monitoring systems
The Rittal CMC III monitoring system helps ensure the physical security of IT, industrial environments, and buildings. The PRTG SNMP Rittal CMC III Hardware Status sensor is designed to monitor these systems. It lets you monitor the hardware and overall status, as well as the performance of the central unit of the CMC III monitoring system and all connected external Rittal sensors. As a result, you can guarantee that your infrastructure is being monitored as needed.
Monitoring OPC UA servers
PRTG also comes with sensors for the “OPC Unified Architecture” (OPC UA) standard. For example, the OPC UA Server Status sensor monitors the status and availability of an OPC UA server and collects diagnostic data. The OPC UA Certificate sensor monitors the certificate of an OPC UA server. And with the OPC UA Custom sensor, you can monitor up to 10 numeric values returned by specific OPC UA node IDs.
The preconfigured Modbus RTU Custom Sensor monitors your serial devices. It connects to your RTU (remote terminal unit) and monitors up to 5 returned numeric values.
PRTG: The Swiss Army knife for sysadminsAdapt PRTG individually and dynamically to your needs and rely on a strong API:
- HTTP API: Access monitoring data and manipulate monitoring objects via HTTP requests
- Custom sensors: Create your own PRTG sensors for customized monitoring
- Custom notifications: Create your own notifications and send action triggers to external systems
- REST Custom sensor: Monitor almost everything that provides data in XML or JSON format
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