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Linux SNMP Network Management Tools

This page assumes that you already have a working knowledge of the basic tools -- ping, netstat, traceroute, nslookup, dig, tcpdump, /proc/net, ipfwadmin, tcpwrapper, maskd and are looking for graphical, distributed tools.

The following should also be consulted for additional leads:


To make the best use of the features of SNMP, a framework that allows for easy configuration, web, pager and email notification, and incorporates other traditional monitoring methods, is vital.
The Mon package provides a highly flexible framework for a large assortment of monitors and alerts for system and network events. This may well be the premier of the freeware packages.

PIKT is a general framework for problem detection, software distribution, and automated problem correction.

Playin' in the LAN
Playin' in the LAN is a set of tools designed to allow hub/router status to be monitored, including alarms, connectivity, traffic graphs, equipment inventory and more. Data archiving via SQL.

scotty, tkined
scotty is a set of tcl extensions designed for network management. Tkined is a graphical application built on scotty to do that management. I am told that this is a powerful & complete system.

Kinetics from Loran Technologies is a turnkey network management system. Bundle includes hardware and software; the base OS is Linux. Not for the faint of wallet; pricing starts at $8300 for a 1-150 station license & goes up from there. This product is aimed at the high-end network management tools from IBM and HP.

Big Brother
The Big Brother package provides web-based, multi-platform configurable network/system/application/filesystem monitor. It can be configured to call a pager when alarms occur.

SNMP Tools

The "Simple Network Management Protocol" (SNMP) is an internet standard for gathering statistics from and managing devices on the internet, principally routers. Below follows a list of free and commercial network management tools for Linux.

The Multi-Router Traffic Grapher is a magnificent graphing tool that will create web pages showing hourly, daily, weekly and yearly in-bound and out-bound packet traffic on one or many routers/ports. Colorful, ease of installation is typical for a source-code package. It runs automatically without a glitch. *Recommended*.

SNMP Sniff
SNMP Sniff is an SNMP packet sniffer. It will listen to a network (LAN) segment in promiscuous mode, and report and decode any information that passes by in any SNMPv1 and SNMPv2 (Community Based) PDU. This can be very useful for debugging new SNMP programs, diagnosing bad interactions between agents and managers, as well as just learning SNMP internals.

NetSCARF Scion
NetSCARF, the Network Statistics Collection And Reporting Facility, performs SNMP queries and displays results on the web.

SNMP Vulture
SNMP Vulture is a set of perl scripts coupled to gnuplot and PBMPlus to create graphs and web pages. Sources appear a bit stale (last updated October 1996).

IBM Webbin
IBM (Zurich) has released a Linux port of its Webbin' CMIP (and SNMP) tools. This tool is interesting because it creates web-pages on the fly, on a special port number, and does not require you to configure or run a web server. Installation is almost trivial. Output in VRML as well as HTML. The next nice thing about this package is the automatic discovery feature, which will locate all snmp agents on your net. In other ways, this package is underwhelming: before you know it, you're just browsing another MIB. No alarm support, no graphs, no history. None-the-less, kudos to IBM for supporting the Linux platform; this is worth a spin around the block.

Cyber Professionals have a web-based SNMP Network Management System, RMONX, which provide a number of features: network status, event detection & notification, trend monitoring, MIB browsing & configuration.

The CMU-SNMP package is a set of basic, low-level libraries, utilities, and of course the snmpd daemon. Most Linux distributions come with this package by default, and include a special extended Linux MIB. If you want to monitor/control a Linux box via SNMP, this package is a must-have. See the CMU-SNMP-3.2 availability announce (old).

DevPatrol is a simple set of Perl scripts that collect current and historical information about host uptime & availability, presenting the results as web pages. It uses SNMP queries, ICMP/UDP/TCP pings and challenge/response on TCP ports to verify reachability & availability of hosts and subsystems (daeomsn, such as POP3, www, etc.). Click here for live example report.

NetEye is a commercial product that provides a Motif-based network management and trouble-ticketing system. It supports SNMP and a subset of SNMPv2, handles alarms and events, and database integration. The screen shot looks interesting ... Unfortunately for English-speakers, the page is in Italian.

The WWW SNMP MIB Browser is a tcl script that allows you to browse SNMP MIB entries with a web browser. Note however, that MIB's are very low level constructs in SNMP -- this tool does NOT provide summary information, graphs, etc. It simply presents a plain ASCII display of the current values of the standard low-level info. Worth a spin, though.

The Netman Development Group provides a set of tools for network management -- runs on UNIX's, I was unable to find Linux binaries (the group mentions that a Linux port has not yet been done). Their page shows some intriguing screen shots. The university that sponsored this project wants $500 US for the source code.

SNMX provides a scripting language interface to a shell-like MIB browser. The MIB browser shell supports "cd" and "ls" for walking the MIB tree as if it were a file directory. Includes a built agent so that scripts can be used to build custom agents.

HTTP-MIB mailing list archives See also the Simple Group's site for the HTTP-MIB project.

BTNG / tricklet
BTNG appears to be an RMON and SNMPv1 ethernet packet monitor. Tricklet seems to be a Tk/tcl based MIB browser. Univ of Delft FTP site.

The screen shots (one and two) look pretty intriguing. HNMS appears to be available on common Linux ftp sites and cd-roms.

XNetDB is advertised as a graphical (X11 based) SNMP client, but the sources appear to date to 1991. A quick attempt to compile on Linux yielded naught ... a file called "sys/mbuf.h" is missing, together with its definition of mbufBuf and MT_RTABLE. Not clear that anything this old is worth pursuing... Sigh ...

This is an SNMP application that polls routers/gateways for packet traffic statistics. Generates plots with gnuplot. Old, dates to 1992. Does not appear to be currently maintained. AARNet gwtraffic Home FTP Site.

Misc Tools

Specifications, Documentation

Network Security

The folks at MimeStar, Inc offer SecureNet PRO, a network security tool that offers session logging and playback, session hijacking, and dynamic firewalling. This tool can be used for tracking malicious users/hackers, as well as for remote network consulting and diagnostics.
Copyright (c) 1997, 1998 Linas Vepstas, All Rights Reserved
Last modified November 1998 -- Linas Vepstas

Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1; with no Invariant Sections, with no Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included at the URL, the web page titled "GNU Free Documentation License".

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