How to Customize Nagios XI and Monitor Anything

The whole point of IT monitoring is to observe, receive alerts, and better understand your IT infrastructure. Customization is essential for this; a screen full of irrelevant numbers and messy charts isn’t helpful.

Increase your flexibility by knowing how to dictate exactly what’s monitored, when alerts should deploy in which circumstances, and how data is presented.

Why Nagios XI’s Customization Can’t Be Beat

Module-based monitoring solutions don’t always allow for full customization. Point-and-click features are prioritized over detail and relevance. Nagios XI is the best of both worlds. There is a huge set of plugins and community-developed add-ons on the Nagios Exchange for quick wins, along with unmatched customization for specific needs. We’ve also published guidelines for plugin development.


In contrast to many other IT infrastructure monitoring solutions, Nagios XI has its roots in the open-source community. With its inherent transparency and versatility, Nagios XI quickly becomes the top pick for anyone looking to get the most out of their monitoring investment.

Brand Agnostic

As organizations grow or onboard new tech vendors, they add or change networks, devices, and platforms. Nagios XI is brand-agnostic, which means you can customize it to monitor any vendor, any device, and any network.

A robust GUI provides for customization of layout, design, and preferences on a per-user basis, giving IT teams the flexibility they want.


How to Maximize Nagios XI Customization

There’s so much you can do with Nagios XI that it can be hard to know where to start. Check out how these organizations are customizing it for themselves and their customers.

“Nagios XI gives us inspiration.”

Sweden-based Rely IT delivers IT solutions for companies throughout Europe, from managing an office’s entire IT network to custom-built software and systems integration services. Read the full Rely IT case study here.

“I really appreciate how easy it is to configure Nagios XI,” said Kenneth Hagstrom, co-founder. “As a consultancy and service provider, it’s up to us to imagine what our customers can monitor. Nagios XI gives us inspiration for what’s possible.”

Hagstrom continued, “We really appreciate the graphs, pre-sets, and configuration inserts. Our customers love the reporting because we can customize it to what they need. Our team has created a lot of customized solutions for [very large customers], and Nagios supports everything that executes our plugins.”

“Do Things with Nagios XI You Could Never Do with Another Solution.”

The U.S. Liability Insurance Group needed more detailed information from their monitoring solution and faster alerts. Infrastructure architect John Kimmel championed the switch from another big-name monitoring provider to Nagios XI.

“If you just use Nagios XI out of the box, you won’t be using it to its full potential,” he said. “If we never wanted to customize anything, we could’ve stayed with our old solution, but it wouldn’t let us do the job right.”

Kimmel explained, “There’s a small learning curve with Nagios, and then you can do things you could never do with another solution. Nagios is the framework that allows you to design or build whatever you want because the customization is the best in the world.”

The team created processes for monitoring ports and login pages. “You have to log into our customer page, but the old solution could only check the port and not whether the actual login page was down. With Nagios XI, I created a process that grabs a login and gives me a cookie to save. Now I log into the cookie to make sure the login page is actually up. That’s an example of something we can monitor with Nagios that we couldn’t do before.”

“The ace up my sleeve.”

Transporting goods across an international border requires precise electronic documentation. “If a truck shows up and the border guard doesn’t have the documentation in the system ahead of time, it’s a large fine,” said Brandon Teixeira, IT director at Landtran, which provides logistics and transportation services across North America.

When a U.S. partner sends Landtran the paperwork for a load, a Landtran user fills out the information and transmits the EDI file to a customs broker via an FTP client. “Every once in a while, Windows stalls out on a task, so that caused us to either not get the paperwork or not be able to send it to the customs broker to get approval for the loads,” said Teixeira.

Teixeira needed to monitor the file in a folder and set up monthly monitoring of that folder with Nagios XI. He created a custom process that rotated monthly logs and set up Nagios’ NRPE wizard for Windows to monitor the folder. He even found other applications to monitor with this approach, such as other FTPs.

“It’s a really cool solution, and it’s helped us be more proactive because I can go in and give Windows a kick before anyone else notices,” he said. “I call Nagios the ace up my sleeve!”

“We’re proud of what we did with Nagios XI and we love it.”

Nagios XI’s architecture enables users to focus on protocols and use any preferred programming language.

“Nagios XI gives you the tools to monitor anything, but you need to make the effort and take the time to understand everything you’re running on the platform. You have to do that if you want to monitor everything correctly,” said Fadi Sodah, director of information and communications technology at the Amman Stock Exchange (ASE).

“We made a large investment of time configuring Nagios XI to precisely monitor what we need for the trading systems and auxiliary systems. We also made its alerting mechanism use the SMS service provider and not depend on an internet connection,” explained Sodah. “We’re proud of what we did with Nagios XI, and we love it. If you compare Nagios XI with other software vendors, those other vendors are taking a lot of your money. The customization of Nagios XI is very valuable to us.”

Today, ASE can drill down farther into its IT environment than ever before. “For example, we have cords and switches from Cisco, and they have a huge number of ports,” said Sodah. “We can monitor all of the management ports and traffic ports, and we’re notified if there’s latency or if a port is disconnected. It’s wonderful!”

Achieving the same success within your organization is just around the corner. Schedule a demo with one of our experienced Nagios experts to get started today.

Ready to Try a 30-day Free Trial of Nagios XI with Full Support? Download Nagios XI here!

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