Monitor almost any hardware platform with the new CIM monitor

Tech Notes

With the new CIM monitor, Kaseya Network Monitor has the ability to monitor hardware operational and health states on almost any hardware platform for servers and storage (and even some desktops). You can monitor counters like CPU, Memory, Fans, RAID, PSU and many more using the CIM monitor. Below is a an example list of systems supporting CIM as a method for retrieving operational states.

  • VMWare
  • HP Eva
  • IBM System Storage (DS series)
  • IBM AIX systems
  • NetApp
  • Oracle
  • EMC
  • Fujitsu
  • LSI
  • Symantec
  • Quantum
  • and many more…

CIM (Common Information Model) is an open standard that defines managed elements and the relationships between a common set of objects. This allows consistent management of these elements, regardless of the manufacturer or provider.

CIM is the base of most other DMTF standards (WBEM, SBLIM and SMASH for example) and is also the base for the SMI-S standard for storage management.

So regardless if your hardware platforms come from HP, Dell, IBM or any other major manufacturer, you can now monitor the hardware performance counters using Kaseya Network Monitor. You can monitor your devices from EMC, Juniper, LSI, NetApp and many more with the same monitoring software, Kaseya Network Monitor.

To be able to use this monitor, your hardware’s CIM agent (CIMOM) needs to be configured. Some vendors already has it configured for you, and you might only have to enable it. VMware ESXi is an example of such software. With VMware installed on HP, Dell, IBM or Fujitsu hardware for example, it already comes with a configured CIMOM and providers loaded for hardware monitoring. For storage devices, you may have to refer to your manual on how to configure the CIMOM and load the providers.

The two most well known CIMOMs have been tested with KNM, sfcb and Pegasus. Both can also be installed on most Linux systems so with the correct providers, you can also monitor your Linux systems using CIM. For Windows, Microsoft’s own CIM implementation, WMI, is still the best option and Kaseya Network Monitor already has a monitor for that.

So how does the monitor work? Let’s have a look at an example.

First of all, you need to have an object that has one of the following system types:

  • Linux/UNIX
  • VMware
  • Others – Generic/Unknown

Of you choose Generic/Unknown, the object will not have any logon account associated with it so you will need to choose one in the monitor configuration.

The monitor specific parameters are shown in the properties. The port 5989 is the default port for SSL-encrypted traffic on the CIMOM called “sfcb”, which comes with for example VMware. Port 5988 is used for non-encrypted traffic. By default, SSL is enabled on ESXi.

The namespace can differ between different systems, but root/cimv2 is the default namespace in KNM since it’s the most commonly used one on many systems. Refer to your object’s manual for information on other namespaces available.

In this example, we have chosen the class “CIM_Processor” for simplicity reasons. The classes are enumerated, based on the namespace you have entered. If you change the namespace, click on “Rescan services” to enumerate the classes associated with the namespace.

Each class then has a number of properties that can be read. These are also enumerated, based on the class you have chosen. In this case, we have chosen the health state for a processor.

There may be several instances for each class/property. In the example, we are checking the processors and the monitored object has 2 processors. You can then choose the data type for what you are monitoring.

In the example, we are monitoring the health state for a processor which has the integer value of 5 when it’s in an OK state. For the compare operation, we then choose “Pass if equal” and set the compare value to 5. This means that the monitor will fail if the monitored processor would have any other value than 5 (OK).

To understand the returned values, we would have to refer you to the CIM manual for your hardware. For a complete list of the VMware classes/properties, the CIM SDK (SMASH) has the values documented at VMWare Developer.

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