Monitoring IT infrastructures often involves the installation of agent software on target servers to collect performance metrics about the servers and application servers executing on them. Performance metrics collected by the agents are then uploaded to a management server for storage, analysis, alerting and reporting to administrators. The need to install and maintain agent software on all monitored servers is a key drawback with this approach.
Agentless monitoring, on the other hand, collects performance metrics from the infrastructure without installing any agent software on the servers or devices being monitored – which makes the agentless approach easier to manage than agent-based monitoring.
Agentless monitoring is suitable to monitor many IT infrastructure components. Without having to install and manage an agent, various parts of the infrastructure can be monitored and performance metrics obtained in an agentless manner. Whether one wants to use a monitoring agent or go the agentless route is completely based on their organizational policy requirements and custom needs. Given below is a list of IT infrastructure components that are recommended to be monitored in an agentless manner:
eG Enterprise supports both agentless and agent-based monitoring. Administrators can choose which parts of the infrastructure they want to monitor agentlessly, and which components to monitor using agents.
In eG Enterprise, agentless monitoring is implemented using a remote data collector that uses protocols such as SSH for Unix monitoring, Windows management instrumentation (WMI) for Windows servers and applications, HTTP/S for web-based applications, JMX for Java applications, SNMP for network devices, etc.
Agentless monitoring is recommended for network devices and storage devices, as well as for virtualization and virtual desktop monitoring where strong APIs are supported by the underlying platforms. For application servers running on legacy operating systems like Windows and Linux, agent-based monitoring is usually preferred. View supported platforms and technologies »
|Agentless Monitoring||Agent-based Monitoring|
|Ease of deployment||Easier to deploy. Software installation is required only on the remote data collector.||Agent deployment is required on each server.|
|Security||The remote data collector must be allowed to communicate with the target system on different ports. The data collector may also need to be installed with domain administration privileges in order to access the remote systems.||Much more secure than agentless monitoring. The agent to application/OS communications are handled internal to the server. Hence, no additional firewall rules need to be configured.|
|Network overhead||Introduces additional network traffic as the raw performance data is transported to a remote data collector.||Bandwidth efficient: Data is collected locally and only the processed results are transported to the console.|
|Breadth and depth of monitoring||Can be limited because not all applications and systems have built-in monitoring capabilities.||Provides deeper, broader monitoring.|
“I like eG Enterprise's ability to monitor just about every component you can think of in our entire organization, and be able to show it on one single dashboard. It's really an excellent product.”