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10 Free Server Monitoring Tools

Monitoring the health and uptime of your web server or web host is important. You want to make sure your website is always available to your users, and that your website isn’t slow. Server monitoring tools allow you to gather and analyze data about your web server.

There are many great server monitoring solutions out there. I thought of sparing you the trouble by curating the list of the best server monitoring tools I could find.

Editor’s note: The last time we covered server monitoring tools was in 2009. We thought it was time to revisit this topic and also discuss some newer tools.

Performance Co-Pilot

Performance Co-Pilot, PCP for short, is a system performance and analysis framework. It collates metrics from multiple hosts and analyzes metrics in real-time. It observes trends to help you identify abnormal performance patterns. It also has APIs that will help you craft your own monitoring and reporting solutions.

Performance Co-Pilot

Anturis

Anturis is a cloud-based SaaS platform for monitoring your servers, websites and IT infrastructure. With a comprehensive list of monitoring solutions, this is one service worth taking a look at.

Anturis

SeaLion

SeaLion is a cloud-based Linux server monitoring tool. It’s a simple way of monitoring all your servers and diagnosing problems from a single dashboard. It takes just minutes to set up, it has instant alerts so that you’re quickly notified when there’s trouble brewing, daily data summaries, and more.

SeaLion

Icinga

Icinga is a free and open source monitoring system which checks the availability of your server resources. It will log server problems and notify you of outages.

Icinga

Munin

Munin is a network and system monitoring tool to help you analyze server resource trends. It’s designed to be a very plug-and-play solution. A default installation provides a lot of reports with almost no work from your end.

Munin

Monit

Monit is an open source utility for managing and monitoring Unix systems. Monit can conduct automatic maintenance and repairs. It can perform various TCP/IP network checks and protocol checks.

Monit

Nagios

Nagios is a powerful open source server/network monitoring solution that offers complete monitoring and alerting for servers, switches, applications, and services. It has a plugin API, so you can extend its out-of-the-box functionality.

Nagios

brainypdm

brainypdm is a web-based data management and monitoring tool that gathers performance data from Nagios (above).

brainypdm

SysUsage

SysUsage monitors your system activity using Sar (Sysstat) and other system commands. It has a threshold notification system that will alert you when your server’s capabilities are close to being maxed out.

SysUsage

Zabbix

Zabbix is an open source performance monitoring solution. It can monitor performance and availability of servers, Web applications, databases, networking equipment, and more.

Zabbix

There is a good chance that I’ve missed some real gems out there. Please feel free to suggest other server monitoring tools in the comments.

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Chetan R is a designer (graphic/UI/UX/Web) and photographer based in India. His website is ChethStudios. Connect with him on Twitter and Google+.

This was published on Jun 19, 2015

8 Comments

Happy Apps is a new free server monitoring tool, you get many of the benefits and features noted in the ten options above, without the excessive notifications and alerts that sometimes come along with the services.

We recently launched, so would love your feedback on the product: http://happyapps.io

Michael Rojek Jun 20 2015

The inherent drawback with free solutions is that they can be a pain to set up and keep running, and any tech support or installation assistance is extra.

NetCrunch 8 is an all-in-one network, server, application, file, log and web monitor in one. It pays for itself in time saved by admins, and especially quickly if you have any support issues http://www.adremsoft.com

    Jacob Gube Jun 20 2015

    Michael. Thanks for sharing the link.

    Though I personally think that what you said is an unfair generalization of free software. Also, I feel a broad categorization statement such as “the inherent drawback with free solutions” trivializes the hard work that free and OS developers put into making their projects accessible and user-friendly. My $0.02.

      Michael Rojek Jun 21 2015

      Definitely a generalization, but the paid solutions do have to differ from the free ones somehow :) Nagios is pretty glorious, but you do need a greater amount of skill and time investment to get it up and to maintain it than with the commercial options.

      Javier Oct 25 2015

      Hey Jacob and Michael. Have you heard of Pandora FMS? Pandora offers a free solution. You can check it out here http://pandorafms.com I would like to know your opinion about it.

PRTG is another great option. Similar to Nagios.
Free for 100 sensors.

Arief B. Jun 26 2015

Thanks for your informations.
What about pingdom.com thats monitor free for 1 website, that can analyze data your website too, and may be give you a resolve how to make server not slow.
Bisnisplus.com use uptimerobot.com , only for monitoring uptime server. There is not bad for monitoring uptime server, 5 mnts / check..

SysUsage definitely could’ve saved some time last week! Hopefully, this can avoid fails like when tech support erroneously attributes a server error to a lack of resources (and recommends a hosting package upgrade, of course). Definitely bookmarking this one.

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