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From the Device Editor Main, select to Add or Modify an entry.

The Reference Monitor allows you to back-reference the result state of one or more existing devices in order to trigger alerts based on the severity of the overall set of devices.

For example, let say you have 4 servers that you are monitoring.  If any one of them fails, an alert will be triggered that notifies specific personnel in charge of that server.  However, if 2, 3, or all 4 servers are down, you may want to trigger different types of alerts since the severity of all 4 failing may require different personnel to be notified.  In this situation, maybe you have 4 redundant servers and you know that if one or 2 are down, all normal operations are being carried out.  If all 4 servers are down, then this would mean that your redundancy capabilities are in catastrophic failure.

The Reference Monitor allows you to maintain this type of flexibility and provides you with the means to know the difference between a single device causing a failure and an entire group of devices, servers, etc. being out of commission.

The reference monitor also allows you to assign a weight (or severity value) to each entry allowing to increase the likelihood of alerts being generated based on the importance of a device.  As in the example above, let's assume that servers 3 and 4 are your primary database servers and servers 1 and 2 are your front-end servers.  You might assign a weight value of 2 to each of the database servers and a value of 1 to each of your front end servers and set the maximum weight value to 2.  In this scenario, the alerts would be triggered if either 1 of the database servers were critical or if both of the front-end servers were critical, or any other combination where the resulting severity was 2 or higher.

As you can see, the Reference Monitoring feature presents extreme flexibility in grouped device monitoring and notification.

After selecting "Reference Monitor" in the Type selector, you will have access to the following fields for configuration.

Editing Reference Monitoring Entry Types

IPSentry Back Reference Monitor Configuration

Reference Monitoring Specific Entries

Reference List
The reference list shows each entry that is to be evaluated during a check of the Reference Monitor along with the weight assigned to each entry.

Maximum trigger weight
The maximum trigger weight is the maximum accumulated weight value based on the entries in Critical State that is allowed before triggering the defined alerts and notification.

For example, if all devices selected are assigned a weight value of 1 and the maximum trigger weight is set to 2, then the Reference Monitor would return a CRITICAL state if 2 or more entries were in a critical state.  If only one entry was in critical state, then the monitor would pass as OK.

Modify Reference List

IPSentry back reference device editor
The Reference Monitor Editor allows you to add, remove, and modify entry references from the list of entry items to be evaluated during the reference check.

For each entry in CRITICAL state, the weight value assigned to that entry will be added to the total resulting in a total trigger weight to be compared to the maximum defined.

This is where you will defined the weight value assigned to a specified entry.

Select Machine
This list contains all entries that will be evaluated during the Reference Monitoring check.

Name
This column is the name of the devices that will be evaluated.

Weight
This value represents the weight that you assigned to the given entry.

Add (button)
Click this button to add a new entry to the list and set it's weight value.

Remove (button)
Click this button to remove the selected entry from the list.

Modify (button)
Click this button to change the entry weight value.

By selecting either Add or Remove, you will be presented with the Reference selection dialogue.
Select Reference Dialogue

COMMON TO ALL MONITOR TYPE ENTRIES

Type
Select from the 6 category types of monitoring entry you wish to edit.

RGE currently provides 6 primary categories with many sub types within each entry category creating a well rounded arsenal of monitoring functionality. 
The categories and types of entries, with their sub-types are as follows:

Group / Template
This entry type does not perform any actions or monitoring tasks on it's own.   The Group/Template type is used for grouping of entry items as well as configuration of standardized templates, schedules, and alerting configurations.
[ Details ]

Network TCP/IP
This entry type allows for TCP/IP based connection and data send/receive capabilities. There are currently 16 pre-configured standard ports and the option to utilize custom port numbers for the host entry.  This is one of the most often used types of monitors within IPSentry.
[ Details ]

WEB PAGE
Telnet
SMTP
RADIUS * Deprecated - use the UDP/DNS/RADIUS Add-In
daytime
DNS-TCP * Deprecated - use the UDP/DNS/RADIUS Add-In
DNS-UDP * Deprecated - use the UDP/DNS/RADIUS Add-In
echo
finger
ftp
http
https * Deprecated - use the HTTP/s Web Monitor
ICMP-PING
nntp
POP
POP3
Custom Port

Service Monitor
This entry type will query local and remote system services to insure they are running.  You may specify one or more services to be monitored within a single entry.  However, you should be aware that if you are monitoring 5 services and one fails, the entry will be reported as failed.  While detail information will be available as to the service that caused the failure, all alerts will be performed as a single failure.
[ Details ]

Drive Space Monitor
This entry provides local and remote drive space monitoring to insure that drive space remains above the user-defined low-water mark.  In the event free space falls below your defined threshold, the defined alerts would be triggered.   For monitoring multiple volumes, you should utilize the Performance Monitoring Add-in to monitor logical drive space percentages available.
[ Details ]

Back-Reference Monitor
The back-reference allows you create an entry whose result is based on the state of one or more other entries in the system.  You define the importance of each entry to be referenced (a weight) and define the maximum weight value that is acceptable.   Thus, you can effectively create an entry that triggers alerts if (x) number of items are in a failure state.
[ Details ]

Command Monitor
The command monitor allows you have IPSentry launch an external command, process, or application and optionally evaluate the run time, exit code, or both.  This allows you create your own external scripts and commands to be launched by IPSentry.
[ Details ]

Add-In Monitoring Component
The Monitoring style add-ins currently being shipped with the IPSentry Installer are as follows
[ Details ]:

Database Connection and Query Monitor
Monitor databases and data sources for connectivity and query result capabilities.

DNS/RADIUS/UDP Monitor
Monitor DNS, RADIUS, and other UDP based servers.

Event Log Monitor
Monitor local and remote event logs for event messages of interest.

File & Directory Monitor
Monitor files, folders, sizes, counts, etc..

File Content Monitor
Evaluate file contents and trigger alerts when data is found.

HTTP/s Enhanced Web Monitor
Provides enhanced web server monitoring capabilities.

IT Environmental Monitor
Monitor Sensatronics environmental monitoring equipment.

Mail Transaction Monitor
Monitor mail delivery from relay host to mailbox for slow or non-delivery issues.

Modem Connection Monitor
Monitor ability to connect to remote dialup systems via modem.

MRTG Counter Value Monitor
Monitor MRTG HTML counter data values for critical levels.

Network Time Monitor
Monitor and Synchronize local time with network time servers.

Performance Counter Monitor
Monitor local and remote windows performance data counters for critical levels.

POP3 Mail Queue Monitor
Monitor POP3 mailboxes for message wait times and message content.

Scripted TCP/IP Network Monitor
Advanced network monitoring using scripted SEND/RECV Scripting

SNMP Object Monitor
Monitor SNMP compliant devices and systems for critical values, changes, etc.

SSL Certificate Monitor
Monitor SSL Certificates for changes, expirations, and validity to be alerted to critical issues regarding your ssl certificate usage.

 

Normal state is [Failure]
If this entry is checked, then IPSentry will expect that the result is intended to be Critical.   This is intended where you require a CRITICAL state to be returned for the entry to be successful.   For example, let's say that you are scanning a file using the file content monitoring and want to be notified if it does not see the text "OK" in the file.  By default, the file content monitor returns CRITICAL when it finds the expected text.  In your case, you only want to be critical if it doesn't find that text.  This would be a good case for enabling this option.  Thus, configured alerts would only be triggered when the text was NOT found.  

Name
Enter a unique device name for this entry.  The recommended device name entry should be brief yet descriptive. This name will be used in the statistics reporting, graphing output (if enabled), as well as textual alerts and notification where configured with the %%mach.name%% keyword.

Description
Enter a meaningful description of the entry providing additional information about what and why the entry is being used and perhaps what is expected.

Schedule
Click this button to modify the entry availability schedule.

Notes
Click this button to modify the entry notations.

Attributes
Click this button to modify the entry custom attributes.

Depends On
This field shows the item upon which this entry is dependent in order to run.  If the dependent item is in a Critical state, this entry (and by reference - it's children) will not be monitored.   This is useful in group scheduling functions as well as avoiding monitoring of items that you know will be un reachable.  For example, if you have 5 web servers on the other side of ROUTER A, you would set each of the servers dependent upon ROUTER A.  If ROUTER A is down, it may be futile to try and connect to the web servers since we already know the link has an issue.  Thus, ROUTER A would trigger it's alerts as the failing point, and the children would be skipped.

Required State
Use to define the require state of the parent entry before this entry will be processed. run (Normal or Critical). 
The default parent required state is normal such that when a parent is in critical state, it's children will not be evaluated. 

Synchronize Dependency Counters
In some cases, you may want the failure counters of child entries to reflect those of the parent.  As in the above scenario, you may want to show that the 5 web servers dependent on the router have also failed.  While the actual state of the web servers themselves is unknown, it is known that access to those servers is unavailable and perhaps this failure should count against them just as it does the router.  Selecting this option is only used for basic statistical purposes and is not reflected in graphing details.   Within the graphing details, if the item was not monitored, there will be no data for that time period.

Suspend / Resume Monitoring
Click this option to suspend (or resume) the current entry.  When suspending a device, you will be presented the option of the duration for which the device should be suspended.  You can enter the duration in DAYS:HOURS:MINUTES to suspend for a specific duration at which point monitoring of the selected entry will resume.   If you leave the duration field blank or set to 0:0:0, the entry will be suspended indefinitely.

When suspending indefinitely, you must Resume the entry manually.

 IPSentry Suspend Item Dialogue

If you click the Select button at this point, you will be given the option to enter a specific date and time on which the entry should resume.
Shedule Time Window

Normal Poll Frequency
This value represents the number of IPSentry cycles that must occur before the item is polled.  The value is useful for monitoring items that may not need to be checked with as often as other items.  For instance, connectivity to a network device such as a web server may need to be checked every 15 seconds where as checking drive space or scanning for an event log may only need to be performed every 5 minutes.  In this case, you can set your sentry cycle interval to 15 seconds and set the poll frequency on your drive space monitor entry to 20.

Critical Poll Frequency
This value represents the number of IPSentry cycles that must occur before the item is polled when it is in a CRITICAL state.  This is useful for entries that have a high poll frequency under normal situations, but may have a tendency to auto-correct within just a couple of cycles thereby becoming stable.  Setting this value to a lower value than the normal poll frequency allows for notification or recovery actions to be performed more quickly.

Copy From
Click this button to copy the configuration settings from another entry.  You will be presented with a list of existing devices from which you can copy the complete configuration.
 
IPSentry Copy device configuration from.

Copy To
Click this button to copy configuration specific settings from this entry to multiple entries.  You will be presented with the Copy To dialogue in order to select the configuration properties to copy and a list of entries to which to copy the selected settings. 

Order Alerts
Click this button to set the preferred order of alert/notification.  In some cases, you may want your email notifications sent before the pager notifications or vice-versa.

Simple highlight the alerting method and click the up/down buttons to reorganize the alerting sequence.
 
Order Alerts for Entry

Test
Click this button to test the configuration as it would run during a normal cycle.  Note that this will not trigger alerts - rather, it will simply tell you the result of the configuration settings.

The result of the test will be displayed in the testing results dialogue.
 
IPSentry device test results dialogue

 



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