Solar winds alert central.Product Review: SolarWinds Alert Central
System Requirements.Product Review: SolarWinds Alert Central
While Alert Central is no longer supported, SolarWinds does offer Pingdom as a great monitoring solution. Jul 15, · Consolidate & Manage Your IT Alerts With SolarWinds Alert Central It’s FREE & Integrates with Virtually ANY IT Software that Sends Alerts!4/5(1). Apr 04, · SolarWinds Alert Central is available as a virtual appliance for either VMware (ESX / ESXi or higher) or Hyper-V (Windows Server R2 or later). The virtual appliance requires 2 GB of RAM and GB of hard disk space.
Solar winds alert central.SolarWinds® Alert Central™ Reviews, Specs, Pricing & Support | Spiceworks
Apr 04, · SolarWinds Alert Central is available as a virtual appliance for either VMware (ESX / ESXi or higher) or Hyper-V (Windows Server R2 or later). The virtual appliance requires 2 GB of RAM and GB of hard disk space. Alert Central Processes This monitor returns the number of specific Alert Central processes: postmaster – A database service that spawns separate processes for each connection. The number of processes should be less than When you view Alerts Central, the alerts are grouped based on status (Triggered, All Good, Disabled). Under normal conditions there will be no Triggered alerts which indicates that everything is all good. If the alert has actively triggered and has not cleared yet, it will include a resolve button that will manually clear the alert.
SolarWinds® Alert Central™
Alert Central (Performance) – Application Monitor Templates – Server & Application Monitor – THWACK
Alert Central Version Now Available! – Product Blog – Resources – THWACK
Product Homepage: click here. Free Download: click here. As someone who spent many years working in a corporate helpdesk, I know all too well how stressful the job can be. The IT staff must quickly detect issues before they become a problem and then make sure that the issues are quickly addressed.
SolarWinds is attempting to make this process a little bit easier by offering a free application called Alert Central. Alert Central is a virtual appliance that is designed to centralize alerts from servers and applications, and then automatically distribute the alert notifications to the appropriate staff member. For the purpose of this review, I downloaded Alert Central and copied the executable to a lab server running Windows Server and Hyper-V.
Whenever I write a software review, I always initially attempt to deploy, configure, and use the software without any documentation so that I can get an idea of how intuitive the software is or is not.
In this case, the download consisted of a single executable file. I assumed that double clicking on the executable would probably cause the virtual appliance to be extracted. The process of importing the virtual machine and bringing it online proved to be very fast, easy, and intuitive. When you log into Alert Central for the first time, you are presented with the Getting Started screen, which you can see in Figure A.
This screen and the subsequent screens function similarly to a setup wizard in that they walk you through the initial configuration process. Figure A: The virtual appliance walks you through the configuration process. The initial configuration process starts out by prompting you to enter information about your E-mail server. The reason why this is required is because Alert Central uses SMTP messaging as the primary mechanism for receiving alerts. The software can receive Orion alerts, but is not equipped to programmatically receive other types of alerts.
As such, the alert source must be able to transmit the alert to Alert Central by sending an E-mail message to a designated account. The process of configuring Alert Central to work with my mail server went relatively smoothly. The software instructed me to set up a dedicated E-mail account, which I did. When I attempted to configure Alert Central to use the account, I received a message stating that the software could not find my mail server.
I was easily able to correct the problem by configuring Alert Central to use a static IP address. The next thing that Alert Central asked me to do was to set up user accounts for the people who will be responding to alerts. I thought that it was a nice touch that the software gave me the option of importing the accounts from the Active Directory.
Since I was testing Alert Central in a lab environment, I opted to manually set up some accounts rather than importing them from the Active Directory. The account setup process proved to be simple and intuitive. The next step in the configuration process is to create some groups. Groups consist of those responsible for responding to an alert.
Alert Central allows you to create multiple, color coded groups. A single person can also belong to more than one group. An organization would typically create groups that align with support responsibilities. The software lets you assign an escalation policy to the group. You can also configure the group so that if an alert that is sent to the group is not acknowledged within a specified period of time, the software moves on to the next escalation step such as alerting someone else.
Once a series of groups have been defined, the software allows you to specify alert sources. As previously mentioned, the software can work with Orion alerts, but the bulk of the alerts received are likely to be E-mail alerts. When you add an alert source, what you are really doing is matching an alert to one of the groups that you created. Suppose for example, that you wanted your Exchange mailbox server to send alerts to Alert Central. You would probably create a dedicated mailbox on the Exchange Server that could be used for the purpose of sending alerts.
You can then configure Alert Central to forward any messages coming from that E-mail account to the appropriate group. The interesting thing about setting up alert sources is that you are doing more than just matching E-mail addresses to alert groups. You can create filtering rules that are able to parse alert E-mail messages.
This is helpful if you use a common E-mail address for multiple alert types because it gives Alert Central a way to figure out who the alert should be sent to. SolarWinds Alert Central would be a useful tool even if all it did was to collect alerts and send them to the proper people.
However, there is another feature built in that makes the software even more useful. Most IT departments have staff members who are designated to be on call at particular times. That way, if a serious problem occurs in the middle of the night, there is someone who is on call that can come in to fix the problem. SolarWinds Alert Central contains a calendar that you can use to manage the on call schedule.
Clicking on a calendar date brings up a dialog box that allows you to pick a group and then specify which group member is on call, and when. You can see what this screen looks like in Figure C. Figure C: Alert Central provides a calendar for keeping track of who is on call.
Keeping track of who is on call is one thing, but what happens if you actually need to call someone? The software features a dedicated tab called On Call Now. Clicking this tab brings up a screen similar to the one shown in Figure D. As you can see in the figure, the On Call Now tab shows you who from each group is currently on call, and for how long.
All in all I think that SolarWinds Alert Central is a great piece of software that should prove to be very useful for tracking and responding to issues. The interface is intuitive and well thought out, and the software seems to work well. I do wish that the software was able to programmatically receive alerts from specific applications, but this minor annoyance can be easily forgiven when you consider that SolarWinds provides the software for free.
Whenever I write a product review for this Web site, it has become customary for me to assign the product a rating between 1 and 5 with 5 being the best. Brien Posey is a freelance technology author and speaker with over two decades of IT experience. Prior to going freelance, Brien was a CIO for a national chain of hospitals and healthcare facilities. In addition, Brien has worked as a network administrator for some of the largest insurance companies in America.
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