Q

Running Nagios on RHEL 5 or Solaris 10

A security expert recommends using a Linux-based operating system, like Red Hat, with open source network monitoring tool Nagios.

I am doing a Nagios deployment. I need to decide on hardware. Should I run Nagios on a Sun T2000 or a Dell PowerEdge 2950? It'd be Nagios 2.9, with about 30,000 services monitored (500 hosts * 60 service checks)? The T2000 would be something like eight 1 GHz cores (32 "CoolThreads"), 8 GB RAM with Solaris 10. The 2950 would be something like dual quad-core Intel X5355s, 8 GB RAM with Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.

From previous experience, either configuration will support the volume of hosts and checks you've described. So other factors need to be considered -- like cost, supportability and ease of administration. From an installation perspective, I find that the majority of Nagios users seem to prefer Linux-based (and Red Hat is amongst the most popular) installations.

This Nagios User Profiles page shows some statistics on this and indicates that 30% of users who registered use Nagios on Red Hat and only 4.6% use Nagios on Solaris. From a support perspective, knowledge and responses on the mailing list and other forums do tend to be skewed toward Linux-based installations. As such, I'd recommend the Linux-based approach. Good luck with your installation.

This was first published in June 2007

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