Cacti 0.8 Beginner's Guide

Learn Cacti and design a robust Network Operations Center

Cacti 0.8 Beginner's Guide

Beginner's Guide
Thomas Urban

Learn Cacti and design a robust Network Operations Center
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Book Details

ISBN 139781849513920
Paperback348 pages

About This Book

  • A complete Cacti book that focuses on the basics as well as the advanced concepts you need to know for implementing a Network Operations Center
  • A step-by-step Beginner's Guide with detailed instructions on how to create and implement custom plugins
  • Real-world examples, which you can explore and make modifications to as you go
  • Written by Thomas Urban – creator of the "Network Management Inventory Database" plugins for Cacti

Who This Book Is For

If you are a network operator and want to use Cacti for implementing performance measurement for trending, troubleshooting, and reporting purposes, then this book is for you. You only need to know the basics of network management and SNMP.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Installing Cacti
Preparing the system—basic prerequisites
Installing Cacti on a CentOS 5 system
Time for action – installing the missing packages
Time for action – downloading Cacti
Time for action – creating the database
Time for action – configuring Cacti
Time for action – creating the poller's cron entry and Cacti's system account
Time for action – installing Spine
Installing Cacti on a Windows system
Time for action – starting the Windows setup
Upgrading Cacti
Time for action – upgrading Cacti
Using Cacti for the first time
Time for action – configuring Cacti
The Cacti web interface explained
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 2: Using Graphs to Monitor Networks and Devices
An introduction to Cacti graphs and the RRDtool
Adding devices to Cacti
Time for action – creating a new device in Cacti
Time for action – adding a host template to the device
Time for action – adding graphs to the device
Time for action – adding interface graphs to a device
Adding devices to the Cacti tree
Time for action – creating a Cacti tree
Time for action – adding a sub-tree
Time for action – adding a device to the Cacti tree
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 3: Creating and Using Templates
An introduction to templates
Defining a data template
Time for action – defining a data template
Defining a graph template
Time for action – defining a CDEF in Cacti
Time for action – defining the graph template
Time for action – defining a graph template
Time for action – adding the color areas
Time for action – adding a legend
Defining a host template
Time for action – defining a host template
Importing/exporting templates
Time for action – importing a template
Time for action – exporting a template
The template repository
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 4: User Management
An introduction to Cacti user management
Creating a user
Time for action – creating the first Cacti user
General user settings
Realm and graph permissions
Time for action – setting realm permissions
Time for action – setting graph permissions
The template user
Time for action – installing the missing packages
Time for action – the Batch Copy
Integrate LDAP/Active Directory authentication
Time for action – setting up Active Directory authentication
Managing users with the Cacti CLI
Time for action – importing users from the CLI
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 5: Data Management
An introduction to Cacti data management
Creating data input methods
Time for action – creating a data input method – Step 1
Time for action – creating a data input method – Step 2
Creating data queries
Time for action – creating a data query – Step 1
Time for action – creating a data query – Step 2
Create a remote SSH data input method
Time for action – create SSH keys with PuTTY Key Generator
Time for action – creating the data input method
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 6: Cacti Maintenance
An introduction to Cacti maintenance
The Cacti directory structure
Backup and restore procedures
Time for action – backup your Cacti database
Time for action – backup your Cacti files
Time for action – enhancing the backup script
Time for action – creating a cronjob
Time for action – restoring the Cacti database
Time for action – restoring all Cacti files
Time for action – restoring the Cacti config.php file
Log file management
Time for action – configuring Logrotate
Cacti maintenance
Time for action – finding orphaned RRD files
A short overview of the Cacti CLI functionality
Summary
Chapter 7: Network and Server Monitoring
An introduction to network and server monitoring
Monitoring a network device
Time for action – set up SNMP on Cisco devices
Time for action – adding a Cisco switch to Cacti
Time for action – set up SNMP access on Cisco PIX
Time for action – adding a Cisco PIX Firewall to Cacti
Monitoring VMware ESX servers
Time for action – set up SNMP access on an ESXi 4 server
Time for action – set up SNMP access on an ESX 3.5 server
Time for action – adding a VMware ESX host to Cacti
Windows monitoring
Time for action – enabling the SNMP server feature
Time for action – configuring the Windows SNMP service
Time for action – setting up a Windows WMI user
Time for action – installing the CactiWMI add-on – Part 1
Time for action – installing the CactiWMI add-on – Part 2
Time for action – performance measurement with CactiWMI
Summary
Chapter 8: Plugin Architecture
Introduction to the Plugin Architecture
Installing the Plugin Architecture
Time for action – installing the Plugin Architecture
Upgrading the Plugin Architecture
Time for action – upgrading the Plugin Architecture
Configuring the Plugin Architecture
Time for action – configuring the Plugin Architecture
Downloading and installing plugins
Time for action – installing the settings plugin
Time for action – removing the settings plugin
Updating a plugin
Adding plugin permissions
Summary
Chapter 9: Plugins
Plugin design
Commonly used plugins
Time for action – adding an external page to Cacti
Creating a new plugin
Time for action – adding the realm permission functions
Time for action – adding additional fields to the host table
Time for action – retrieve data from the database
Time for action – presenting data on the tree view page
Time for action – deleting data
Time for action – sorting and retrieving data
The data presentation section
Time for action – presenting the data
Time for action – retrieving data from the form post
Time for action – creating a new database item
Time for action – updating an existing item
Summary
Chapter 10: Threshold Monitoring with Thold
Threshold monitoring
Installing Thold
Time for action – installing Thold
Configuring Thold
Using Thold
Time for action – give permission to a user
Time for action – creating your first threshold – Part 1
Time for action – creating your first threshold – Part 2
Time for action – installing the stress tool
Time for action – viewing breached thresholds
Time for action – creating your first threshold template
Time for action – assigning a threshold template
Summary
Chapter 11: Enterprise Reporting
Overview of Nectar and CereusReporting
Nectar
Time for action – installing Nectar
Time for action – create your first Nectar report
Time for action – adding report items
CereusReporting
Time for action – installing CereusReporting
Time for action – configure CereusReporting
Time for action – creating an on-demand report
Time for action – creating a pre-defined report
Time for action – scheduling a pre-defined report
Time for action – Backup and Restore a pre-defined report
Report scheduling and polling performance
Time for action – setup of a cron-based report generation
Advanced reporting features of CereusReporting
Summary
Chapter 12: Cacti Automation for NOC
Overview of Cacti automation
Using the Cacti CLI
Time for action – adding permissions to a user
Time for action – adding a Cacti tree
Time for action – adding a single device to Cacti
Autom8 – true Cacti automation
Time for action – installing the Autom8 plugin
Time for action – patching the Cacti files
Time for action – adding a new Tree Rule
Time for action – applying an Autom8 rule to devices
Time for action – adding a Graph Rule
Summary

What You Will Learn

  • Set up Cacti on Linux and Windows systems
  • Extend the core functionality by using the plugin architecture
  • Build your own custom plugins
  • Create your own custom data input method to retrieve data from your systems
  • Use SNMP, SSH, and WMI to retrieve remote performance data
  • Design and create enterprise-class reports with the reporting plugins
  • Implement threshold-based alerting using the Thold plugin
  • Automate common administrative tasks utilizing the command-line interface and the autom8 plugin
  • Enable mobile access to your Cacti installation for your end users

In Detail

Cacti is a performance measurement tool that provides easy methods and functions for gathering and graphing system data. You can use Cacti to develop a robust event management system that can alert on just about anything you would like it to. But to do that, you need to gain a solid understanding of the basics of Cacti, its plugin architecture, and automation concepts.

Cacti 0.8 Beginner's Guide will introduce you to the wide variety of features of Cacti and will guide you on how to use them for maximum effectiveness. Advanced topics like the plugin architecture and Cacti automation using the command-line interface will help you build a professional performance measurement system.

Designed as a beginner's guide, the book starts off with the basics of installing and using Cacti, and also covers the advanced topics that will show you how to customize and extend the core Cacti functionalities. The book offers essential tutorials for creating advanced graphs and using plugins to create enterprise-class reports to show your customers and colleagues.

From data templates to input methods and plugin installation to creating your own customized plugins, this book provides you with a rich selection of step-by-step instructions to reach your goals. It covers all you need to know to implement professional performance measurement techniques with Cacti and ways to fully customize Cacti to fit your needs.

By the end of the book, you will be able to implement and extend Cacti to monitor, display, and report the performance of your network exactly the way you want.

Authors

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Installing Cacti
Preparing the system—basic prerequisites
Installing Cacti on a CentOS 5 system
Time for action – installing the missing packages
Time for action – downloading Cacti
Time for action – creating the database
Time for action – configuring Cacti
Time for action – creating the poller's cron entry and Cacti's system account
Time for action – installing Spine
Installing Cacti on a Windows system
Time for action – starting the Windows setup
Upgrading Cacti
Time for action – upgrading Cacti
Using Cacti for the first time
Time for action – configuring Cacti
The Cacti web interface explained
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 2: Using Graphs to Monitor Networks and Devices
An introduction to Cacti graphs and the RRDtool
Adding devices to Cacti
Time for action – creating a new device in Cacti
Time for action – adding a host template to the device
Time for action – adding graphs to the device
Time for action – adding interface graphs to a device
Adding devices to the Cacti tree
Time for action – creating a Cacti tree
Time for action – adding a sub-tree
Time for action – adding a device to the Cacti tree
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 3: Creating and Using Templates
An introduction to templates
Defining a data template
Time for action – defining a data template
Defining a graph template
Time for action – defining a CDEF in Cacti
Time for action – defining the graph template
Time for action – defining a graph template
Time for action – adding the color areas
Time for action – adding a legend
Defining a host template
Time for action – defining a host template
Importing/exporting templates
Time for action – importing a template
Time for action – exporting a template
The template repository
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 4: User Management
An introduction to Cacti user management
Creating a user
Time for action – creating the first Cacti user
General user settings
Realm and graph permissions
Time for action – setting realm permissions
Time for action – setting graph permissions
The template user
Time for action – installing the missing packages
Time for action – the Batch Copy
Integrate LDAP/Active Directory authentication
Time for action – setting up Active Directory authentication
Managing users with the Cacti CLI
Time for action – importing users from the CLI
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 5: Data Management
An introduction to Cacti data management
Creating data input methods
Time for action – creating a data input method – Step 1
Time for action – creating a data input method – Step 2
Creating data queries
Time for action – creating a data query – Step 1
Time for action – creating a data query – Step 2
Create a remote SSH data input method
Time for action – create SSH keys with PuTTY Key Generator
Time for action – creating the data input method
Before we continue
Summary
Chapter 6: Cacti Maintenance
An introduction to Cacti maintenance
The Cacti directory structure
Backup and restore procedures
Time for action – backup your Cacti database
Time for action – backup your Cacti files
Time for action – enhancing the backup script
Time for action – creating a cronjob
Time for action – restoring the Cacti database
Time for action – restoring all Cacti files
Time for action – restoring the Cacti config.php file
Log file management
Time for action – configuring Logrotate
Cacti maintenance
Time for action – finding orphaned RRD files
A short overview of the Cacti CLI functionality
Summary
Chapter 7: Network and Server Monitoring
An introduction to network and server monitoring
Monitoring a network device
Time for action – set up SNMP on Cisco devices
Time for action – adding a Cisco switch to Cacti
Time for action – set up SNMP access on Cisco PIX
Time for action – adding a Cisco PIX Firewall to Cacti
Monitoring VMware ESX servers
Time for action – set up SNMP access on an ESXi 4 server
Time for action – set up SNMP access on an ESX 3.5 server
Time for action – adding a VMware ESX host to Cacti
Windows monitoring
Time for action – enabling the SNMP server feature
Time for action – configuring the Windows SNMP service
Time for action – setting up a Windows WMI user
Time for action – installing the CactiWMI add-on – Part 1
Time for action – installing the CactiWMI add-on – Part 2
Time for action – performance measurement with CactiWMI
Summary
Chapter 8: Plugin Architecture
Introduction to the Plugin Architecture
Installing the Plugin Architecture
Time for action – installing the Plugin Architecture
Upgrading the Plugin Architecture
Time for action – upgrading the Plugin Architecture
Configuring the Plugin Architecture
Time for action – configuring the Plugin Architecture
Downloading and installing plugins
Time for action – installing the settings plugin
Time for action – removing the settings plugin
Updating a plugin
Adding plugin permissions
Summary
Chapter 9: Plugins
Plugin design
Commonly used plugins
Time for action – adding an external page to Cacti
Creating a new plugin
Time for action – adding the realm permission functions
Time for action – adding additional fields to the host table
Time for action – retrieve data from the database
Time for action – presenting data on the tree view page
Time for action – deleting data
Time for action – sorting and retrieving data
The data presentation section
Time for action – presenting the data
Time for action – retrieving data from the form post
Time for action – creating a new database item
Time for action – updating an existing item
Summary
Chapter 10: Threshold Monitoring with Thold
Threshold monitoring
Installing Thold
Time for action – installing Thold
Configuring Thold
Using Thold
Time for action – give permission to a user
Time for action – creating your first threshold – Part 1
Time for action – creating your first threshold – Part 2
Time for action – installing the stress tool
Time for action – viewing breached thresholds
Time for action – creating your first threshold template
Time for action – assigning a threshold template
Summary
Chapter 11: Enterprise Reporting
Overview of Nectar and CereusReporting
Nectar
Time for action – installing Nectar
Time for action – create your first Nectar report
Time for action – adding report items
CereusReporting
Time for action – installing CereusReporting
Time for action – configure CereusReporting
Time for action – creating an on-demand report
Time for action – creating a pre-defined report
Time for action – scheduling a pre-defined report
Time for action – Backup and Restore a pre-defined report
Report scheduling and polling performance
Time for action – setup of a cron-based report generation
Advanced reporting features of CereusReporting
Summary
Chapter 12: Cacti Automation for NOC
Overview of Cacti automation
Using the Cacti CLI
Time for action – adding permissions to a user
Time for action – adding a Cacti tree
Time for action – adding a single device to Cacti
Autom8 – true Cacti automation
Time for action – installing the Autom8 plugin
Time for action – patching the Cacti files
Time for action – adding a new Tree Rule
Time for action – applying an Autom8 rule to devices
Time for action – adding a Graph Rule
Summary

Book Details

ISBN 139781849513920
Paperback348 pages
Read More