Data centers are complex, and maintaining them needs a team of experts supported with the best monitoring tools. Such a combination can help to proactively identify issues and address them before it impacts the end-users.
Also, they can prevent security lapses and the ensuing financial loss that could potentially run into thousands of dollars.
That said, choosing the right tool is not easy, with the abundantly available choices. Further, you need to pick a tool that best fits your data center setup and business needs. This is why we have come up with some of the best tools available in the market today. Also, these tools tend to be comprehensive and come with a host of features that make them a good fit for most situations.
Here’s our list of the best data center monitoring tools:
- SolarWinds Orion This scalable engine from SolarWinds can monitor and manage large-scale enterprises with its advanced tools, and at the same time, is flexible enough for customization and integration with other platforms.
- Paessler PRTG Network Monitor Α powerful monitoring tool that helps you stay ahead of infrastructure issues. It's suitable for businesses of all sides and requires no additional plugins or downloads.
- Datadog Α monitoring and security platform design for modern applications and infrastructure. Hence, it comes with a host of features to efficiently monitor and manage different environments and the applications that run on them.
- ManageEngine OpManager This comprehensive monitoring software comes with the capability to monitor a wide range of devices in your IT infrastructure and, through it, provide detailed visibility and control over their working.
- NLyte Software Α data center infrastructure management tool that can optimize your critical infrastructure and reduce disruptions through it.
- Kaseya VSA Α unified remote monitoring and management tool that automates management for improved efficiency and gives complete visibility into the working of your IT infrastructure.
- Optimum Path Visual Data Center This unified platform from Appsilan aggregates different data sources to give you insights into the performance of your data center.
- Device42 Αn agentless hybrid cloud dependency and discovery mapping platform that gives a comprehensive view of the state of your infrastructure.
- Zabbix Α free and open-source platform that can be used for monitoring anything such as networks, devices, services, the cloud, and more.
Let's do a deep dive into each of these tools, so you can decide the one that best fits your needs.
The Best Data Center Monitoring Tools
1. SolarWinds Orion
Orion from SolarWinds is a comprehensive platform to handle your complete IT stack. It works well across multiple applications and platforms to provide a single view of the performance of your data centers. It can also manage the administrative tasks for these units, thereby increasing the productivity of employees.
The salient features of SolarWinds Orion are as follows.
- Provides centralized monitoring and management of your entire IT stack
- Its scalable architecture works well across physical, virtualized, cloud, and hybrid environments
- Can be deployed across on-prem systems and virtualized containers
- Works well across multiple platforms and vendors to monitor for fault, performance, and availability
- Automatically forecasts capacity for future planning
- Sends alerts when values cross specific thresholds
- Provides in-depth visibility into the performance of commercial and custom applications
- Identifies and remediates problems in vSphere and Hyper-V
- Notifies configuration changes in real-time
- Captures data from continuous streams and converts them into easy-it-understand charts and reports
- Quantifies the traffic
- Searches and filters log data
- Provides unified storage monitoring across vendors and devices
- Stays on top of the performance of VoIP and WANs
- Troubleshoots performance issues for internal and external websites and applications
- Optimizes the performance of your database
- Automatically patches Microsoft servers and other third-party apps
Download: Click here to request a demo of SolarWinds Orion.
2. Paessler PRTG Network Monitor
PRTG Network Monitor is a powerful tool that helps you stay on top of your IT infrastructure at all times. It comes with advanced capabilities to monitor all the systems, devices, applications, and traffic sources on your IT system to ensure that you're aware of all that's happening with your tech stack.
Here's a look at the features of Paessler PRTG Network Monitor.
- Provides information on bandwidth usage so that you can plan accordingly. You can also use this information to formulate usage policies, set priorities for applications, and do whatever else is needed to optimize your bandwidth. You can use this information to identify and fix bottlenecks as well
- Monitors data sets from PRTG sensors and SQL queries
- Manages applications and provides detailed information about the working of every application in your infrastructure
- Monitors your cloud resources located worldwide
- Stays on top of the performance, capacity, reliability, and accessibility of all types of servers
- Makes it easy to track your LAN and the various devices that operate in it
- Integrates well with different technologies such as SMTP, HTTP, WMI, REST APIs, and more
- Visually represents all the collected information for easy understanding
- The map designer creates intuitive dashboards with more than 300 different map objects
- Sends alerts when PRTG finds any problems with any application. Specifically, it compares the collected metrics with baseline values and sends a notification of wide discrepancies in values.
- The API can be extended to write your custom notifications
Pricing: Since PRTG is a sensor-based platform, the cost depends on the number of sensors you use, where one sensor is used to monitor a single aspect like memory, CPU usage, etc., of a device.
The current pricing structure is,
- First 500 sensors cost $1,750
- 501 to 1000 sensors cost $3,200
- 1001 to 2500 sensors cost $6,500
- 2501 to 5000 sensors cost $11,500
- Unlimited sensors in one installation cost $15,500
Contact the sales team if you want to have unlimited sensors across multiple installations.
Download: Click here for a 30-day free trial.
Datadog is an advanced monitoring tool that provides end-to-end visibility across on-prem, cloud, and hybrid environments. Its real-time interactive dashboard and notification systems add to the output efficiency as well.
The features of this tool are:
- Seamlessly integrates metrics and events across the complete tech stack
- Trace requests across distributed systems
- Instruments the code using open source libraries
- Tracks app performance with service overviews
- Collects logs from all applications and devices
- Creates a context for log data
- Detects performance issues and sends alerts on the same when it exceeds established thresholds
- Manages your SLAs and SLOs
- Correlates the frontend performance with business goals
- Visualizes traffic flow in cloud environments
- Reports key metrics
- Enables you to build interactive dashboards in real-time
- Sends a snapshot of potential issues, notifies your team, and helps you have discussions in the proper context
- Provides Restful APIs to extend its functionality
Pricing: There are three editions – Free, Pro, and Enterprise.
The Free plan offers core collection and visualization features, while the Pro plan, priced at $15 per host per month, centralizes the monitoring of systems and services. Finally, the Enterprise plan, priced at $23 per host per month, offers advanced features and administrative controls that are not available in the other plans.
Download: Click here to get started for free.
4. ManageEngine OpManager
OpManager from ManageEngine is a network monitoring software that continuously scans the network to provide in-depth visibility and control over the health and performance of different devices such as routers, switches, workstations, servers, firewalls, and more.
Here's a look at the essential features of OpManager.
- Monitors critical metrics such as packet loss, latency, speed, and performance bottlenecks
- Works well on Windows and Linux servers and also on virtual servers
- Has multi-level thresholds to stay on top of the performance of your network and all the devices on it
- Comes with customizable dashboards. You can even create one with more than 200 performance widgets, so you can view the metrics just the way you want
- Identifies the root cause of the problem and makes appropriate suggestions for a fix
- No training or additional installations are required
- Send alerts through emails and SMS messages
- Automates the network troubleshooting process
- Uses a rule-based method for analyzing incoming syslogs
- Provides insights into storage capacity and performance for improved optimization
- Integrates well with many plugins and APIs
- Ensures high availability of your network and its devices
Pricing: OpManager comes in two editions – Standard and Professional. Here's a quick look at the pricing.
Devices and Users
Standard (Perpetual license)
Professional (Perpetual license)
|10 devices, 2 users||$245||$49||$345||$69|
|25 devices, 2 users||$595||$119||$795||$159|
|50 devices, 2 users||$1,095||$219||$1,545||$309|
|100 devices, 2 users||$1,995||$399||$2,845||$569|
|250 devices, 2 users||$4,545||$909||$6,595||$1,319|
|500 devices, 2 users||$7,195||$1,439||$9,595||$1,919|
|1000 devices, 2 users||$10,095||$2,019||$14,995||$2,999|
Download: Click here for a free download.
5. NLyte Software
NLyte Software is a complete data center infrastructure management tool that can optimize your critical infrastructure, including your data center, hybrid environment, and cloud and edge computing resources.
The features of NLyte software are:
- Monitors telemetry points to optimize power and thermal efficiencies
- Reduces disruptions from the maintenance cycles of your network resources
- Predicts disruptions to help you plan for them
- Optimizes the placement of application workloads
- Provides complete visibility into the health and performance of all devices
- Unifies the data center ecosystem
- Reduces costs and resource usage
- Balances critical infrastructure maintenance with workload availability
- Identifies anomalies in the performance of your devices
- Gives transparency across the entire facility infrastructure
Pricing: For pricing, call 650-642-2700 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Download: Click here for a demo.
6. Kaseya VSA
Kaseya VSA is a unified monitoring and management tool that comes loaded with features for comprehensive monitoring of your IT infrastructure. It also comes with a bunch of automation options to reduce workload and improve the efficiency of operations.
Some of the essential features of Kaseya VSA are:
- Monitors and manages all traditional endpoints like servers, desktops, laptops, SNMP network devices, and printers
- Provides visibility into your entire IT infrastructure
- Generates reports and dashboards to help visualize your IT data
- Boosts efficiency through automation
- Remotely manages endpoints to identify and resolve issues quickly
- Automates IT processes such as patch and vulnerability management
- Manages backups
- Eliminates processes that are not relevant to your IT infrastructure and suggests removing unused tools to boost the overall efficiency
- Discovers new devices and maps them
Pricing: Contact the sales team for pricing.
Download: Click here to get started.
7. Optimum Path Visual Data Center
Optimum Path Visual Data Center is a unified platform that aggregates data from multiple sources to help you understand the performance of your IT infrastructure at any time. In the process, it reduces operating expenses and improves the overall reliability of applications.
The features of Optimum Path Visual Data Center are:
- Displays 3D visualization of the entire infrastructure to give you an idea of the devices and their operations within the larger context of your IT operations
- Helps with capacity planning and forecasting
- Creates models and simulations to give a more predictable touch to your deployments
- Tracks the performance of processes and their associated tickets.
- Maps devices and their interdependencies for impact analysis and root cause failures
- Its intuitive dashboard displays KPIs and other metrics
- Monitors environmental aspects such as temperature, humidity, etc., so you can make changes as needed for the longevity of your devices
- The interface is intuitive and straightforward
Pricing: Contact the customer team for pricing.
Download: Enter your details in the “Get Demo” form for a free demo.
Device42 is an advanced hybrid cloud discovery and dependency mapping platform that provides comprehensive visibility into your data center, along with its dependencies and connected resources.
Below are the characteristics of Device42.
- Provides accurate visibility across the entire IT stack
- Meets internal and external compliance
- Identifies dependencies across environments
- Automatically discovers infrastructure and applications across the data center and cloud
- Works well for large organizations handling complex IT infrastructure
- Integrates with most ITSM and SIEM tools
- Reduces downtimes and improves the overall operational efficiency
- Enhances provisioning and automation and optimizes the existing workload
- Provides detailed root cause analysis and a single source of truth within your organization
- Discovers and maps application dependencies
- Centrally manages all shared passwords between different teams
Pricing: The pricing depends on the number of devices and IP addresses in use. The cost includes annual maintenance and upgrades charges, and the cost per device will go down when you have more devices.
Click here to build your online quote.
Download: Click here to try Device42 for free.
Zabbix is an open-source tool used for monitoring a wide range of devices and environments. It works well for both small and large enterprise-scale IT environments.
Here are some of the salient features of Zabbix.
- It has virtually unlimited scalability as it can monitor 100,000+ hosts and metrics
- Supports distributed monitoring for helping you stay on top of applications across geographies
- Comes with strong end-to-end encryption and out-of-the-box templates
- Auto discovers devices and maps them automatically
- Predicts trends and anomalies so that you can get to the issues right away
- Has intelligent alert and remediation capabilities
- Collects metrics from all the devices, services, and applications
- Defines smart thresholds
- Displays all the pertinent information on a single pane
- You have the option to allow Zabbix to fix issues automatically
- Protects data at all levels
- Ideal for monitoring large and diverse environments
- Integrates well with all parts of an environment
Pricing: 100% FREE
Download: Click here to download Zabbix.
Which Tool Should You Choose?
Now that you've seen the best data center monitoring tools, the big question is, which of these should you choose?
Before embarking on this decision-making process, make a list of the devices and networks you want to monitor, to get an estimate of the size, nature, and diversity of your tech stack. Next, note down any specific features you want, such as automating the workflow, supporting particular operating systems, and more. Finally, have a budget in mind.
Run each of these aspects against the tools mentioned earlier to see which fits your needs well. In case of any questions, never hesitate to reach out to the customer service representatives of these companies. Most of them have a chat feature right on the website, while others have an email option. All the companies mentioned in this article have good quality customer support and respond quickly to your questions.
Based on all these aspects, pick the tool that would work best for your organization.