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Avoiding SysAdmin Paranoia with the Right IT Monitoring Alerts

Setting up alerts can be a tricky business, if you underdo it you might not get an alert telling you about a critical system problem, overdo it and you might simply lose that critical alert in a stream of non-critical alerts.

But do not fear! Help is at hand, this guide shows you how to configure alerts to really suit your needs and to ensure that anything you cannot afford to miss is brought to you attention.

This guide will cover how, what and who to alert on, and what systems to apply these rules to. Each of these options are critical when setting up alerts, getting all of these right is the key to becoming an alerting pro.

How to alert

Email is a powerful tool, but it not always the best way to alert on critical system issues. Opsview has the flexibility to alert by email, service desk tools, iOS Push notifications, Android Push notifications, SMS and more. Fully utilize all the notification options available to ensure that your alert is going to get your attention.

To really get the most out of the different notification methods configure different profiles for different times of the day, email might be perfect for during the working day, but SMS might suit you better during the evening while you are not near your computer. 

Who to alert

Getting the right alerts to the right people ensures that issues are fixed efficiently and cuts down on the amount on alerts you get that are not relevant to you. Use the notification profiles to configure alerts that relate the right systems to the right people. For Business Services you can select just select those services that are relevant to the user and for individual host and service checks hashtags make the process of selecting the correct combination for each user simple.

Opsview also integrates with VictorOps and PagerDuty allowing you to get the correct notifications at the right time to shift workers.

What to alert upon

A hard drive that is starting to get a little full is something to be aware of but is not something you are going to appreciate an SMS for in the middle of the night. Differentiating alerting profiles for major service effecting outages and preemptive warnings is critical, so fine tune those alerts so the right things get the right priority.

Business Service monitoring really helps you to achieve this, as it understand the makeup of you IT infrastructure, alerts set up against it are only triggered when it is truly is a service effecting outage.

For alerts against individual systems use hashtags, these are a simple way to tag your systems to form special groups or collections of related systems. The added extra bonus of hashtags is that as you add new systems you just tag them with the relevant existing hashtags and they are instantly configured in your alerts and reports.


To find out more about Business Service Monitoring in Opsview have a look here. To see how to configure Hashtags and Business Services we have some handy videos below:

Business Service Monitoring

Using Hashtags

Once you have fully optimized your alerts you should see a clear difference in your inbox and you will avoid unless completely necessary having to look at alerts in the evening or weekends.

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by Opsview Team,
Opsview is passionately focused on monitoring that enables DevOps teams to deliver smarter business services, faster.

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