Server Monitoring: Agent-based vs Agentless

A comparison to Site24x7's agent-based and agentless monitoring approaches.

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Overview

Is it better to install an agent in every server to monitor its performance, or should you go agentless? To help you decide which is the best approach to handle your infrastucture problems, we've listed the metrics you receive with agent-based and agentless approaches. This makes it easy for you to compare and decide what method fits your environment best.

Attribute Site24x7 Agent-based Monitoring Site24x7 Agentless Monitoring
Methodology Install the Site24x7 server monitoring agent in every server. Install Site24x7 On-Premise Poller in the server's network.
Installation methods 1. Install an agent individually in every server.
2. Bulk install methods for Windows and Linux.
1. Add individual servers with IP address/Hostname.
2. Servers in the same network can be discovered by specifying an IP range.
Technology used Secure SSL protocol and a one way HTTPS connection to Site24x7. Uses SNMP protocol.
Note: Every server needs to enable the SNMP protocol for it to communicate with Site24x7 On-Premise Poller. The Poller then sends the data to Site24x7.
Connectivity to the internet Access to the internet is not mandatory for all servers. Agents in the intranet servers can send the data to Site24x7 through a proxy server connected to the internet. Outbound access to the internet for the On-premise Poller is sufficient to collect server metrics.
Credentials Credentials need not be provided. SNMP or WMI credentials have to be provided.
Supported versions: SNMPv1/v2 and SNMP v3.
Dedicated server Does not require a dedicated server for Site24x7. One dedicated server machine to run the On-premise Poller. We support a maximum of 500 servers per Poller.
Log management For Log management, use the AppLogs agent to access the logs in local server. Cannot access application logs without an agent.
Status check and real-time alerting One-minute status checks provide near real time notifications. Five-minute poll frequency to collect performance metrics. One minute status checks.
Supported OS types Windows, Linux, macOS, and FreeBSD. Windows, Linux, macOS, FreeBSD, Solaris, HP, IBM, and Dell iDRAC.
Metrics
CPU metrics
CPU utilization
CPU utilization by core
Idle time, wait time, hardware, and software interrupts time
Memory metrics
Memory utilization
Swap memory utilization
Memory pages (in/out/faults)
Disk metrics
Disk utilization
Individual disk utilization
Disk I/O speed
Disk idle and busy percentage
Process monitoring
Process CPU usage
Process memory usage (percentage)
Process memory usage (bytes)
Process instance count
Process thread and handle count
Services monitoring
CPU usage (percentage)
Memory usage (percentage)
Instance count
Thread count and handle count
Response time
Performance counters
Custom performance metrics Yes. Through custom plugins that collect data through Shell script Yes. Supports custom SNMP counters - Tabular and scalar.
Interfaces
I/O traffic
Packets received and transmitted
Errors count
Errors percentage
Discard count
Discard percentage
Admin/Operational state 
Plugins
Integrate with plugins
Resource checks
File, directory, syslog, and event log checks
Microsoft applications
IIS, SQL, Exchange, BizTalk, SharePoint, Office 365, Active Directory, Failover Cluster, Hyper-V, and Windows Backup
IT automation
Incident remediation - configure scripts that gets executed automatically on downtime.
Alerting and reporting
SMS, email and voice call
Performance reports
Pricing
Licensing model Each server monitoring agent is considered as one basic monitor. Each server monitor is considered as one basic monitor.

This Comparison was updated on 22 June, 2020. All trademarks and registered trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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