We designed NetCrunch to be an integrated system from the beginning. It delivers many features out-of-the-box while allowing a high level of customization.
No matter which NetCrunch version you use, and what is your monitoring scope, all these elements deliver the features you need.
The Atlas is a central database containing all your monitoring data. The hierarchy of the Atlas views organizes your data into a manageable database.
In other words, Atlas is all about data organizing. NetCrunch allows creating custom views based on filters and also in a more dynamic way using dynamic folders. Dynamic Folder groups nodes by specific criteria and then each group can be placed on a separate view or put on a single one depending on the number of elements.
Each view represents a group of nodes, and it can be presented in various ways such as a map, dashboard or a table specific to the monitoring data. It's customizable, and program chooses the best tab for the given view.
NetCrunch allows you to extend node properties by adding multiple custom fields, for example related to its location details. In this way, you can add any information to the nodes, and you can define reports, policies or filtered views based on custom fields.
When you monitor devices behind a router, switch or bridge, you do not want to see the alert storm when the intermediate connection is broken.
Thanks to the dependencies, NetCrunch can disable monitoring of nodes behind the failed device and also can reduce false alerts caused by the link failure.
The top dependency is the NetCrunch machine - if it loses connection, it stops monitoring everything. Additionally, NetCrunch monitors its internal processes to make sure everything is working fine.
We built maps for presenting network topology and dependencies. After we added live data widgets, they became another type of dashboard where you can present even weather data.
@@img:map-dashboard-weather.png Map with Weather Info
Here is another example of the map created from various widgets, representing an ESX cluster.
@@img:map-dashboard.png Map Dashboard
NetCrunch also creates automatically laid out maps for views that can dynamically change (nodes appear or disappear). This especially applies to Layer 2 segment maps.
NetCrunch offers two views for a status overview. The first one is more detailed, the second one is aggregated.
For a smaller number of nodes, it shows nodes detailed view of each service status per node.
For a larger number of nodes, summary view aggregates statuses in a more concise, per service view.
Another easy to configure dashboard showing top statistics for the Atlas view.
@@img:top-charts.png Top Charts
There are many pre-defined charts included such as
You can create a top chart based on any monitoring performance counter.
@@img:performance-view.png Performance View
NetCrunch provides a particular type of Atlas view called Performance view. It can present charts, gauges and bar charts with live data. You can create a view for a group of nodes by defining a filter for nodes and then by adding counters to be displayed (i.e., "% Processor Utilization" for servers), or you can add each chart manually. Additionally, you can group multiple trends on a single chart.
@@img:performance-view-group-chart.png Performance View - Grouped Charts
Monitoring performance metrics is a core of every monitoring system. NetCrunch stores every collected metric in the Performance Trend database - fast, compressed, file-based NoSQL database.
In any place where performance metrics are accessible, you can always look into the historical data of the particular counter, and compare multiple counters' values over time.
@@img:trend-viewer.png NetCrunch Trend Viewer
Sometimes we need to monitor the calculated metric based upon other counters presented by the device. The example can be Windows "Normalized Processor Usage" which requires system processor utilization to be divided by the number of processors.
@@img:calculated-counter.png Calculated Counter
@@img:grafcrunch-dashboard.png GrafCrunch Dashboard
NetCrunch comes with a fork of the open source project Grafana -one of the top open source performance visualization projects,
it greatly increases the possibilities of creating live performance dashboards and allows you to present data from various sources. You can also put on a single dashboard data from multiple NetCrunch servers.
GrafCrunch has been created for easy installation and integration into NetCrunch.
NetCrunch act as a central log server for various event sources. It stores events in the NetCrunch Event Log (SQL) database and performs defined alert actions.
In NetCrunch, all internal alerts are automatically correlated, so the program knows when an alert begins (and is pending for resolution) and when it is finished (closed or resolved). NetCrunch allows to easily correlate even external alerts such as traps or syslog messages to provide an accurate state of the system.
For every event stored in the event log, NetCrunch offers a detailed view. Beside showing parameters of the event, the window allows you to manage alert settings, and to find where it is defined (in which policy), You can see useful frequency analysis which tells you how often given type of event would happen on given node. Additionally, administrators can add many comments to it.
As a response to an alert, NetCrunch can execute a sequence of actions, and they can escalate over time. Operations can also be executed when the alert ends (on alert close).
@@img:alerting-actions.png Alerting Actions
A typical action is a notification, but NetCrunch also allows (remote) executing of corrective actions like commands (i.e. restarting) or scripts.
Common action groups:
Read more about Alerting Actions
NetCrunch includes comprehensive viewer allowing generating reports on demand and accessing stored reports that can be generated automatically.
All reports can be scheduled and sent as email attachments to administrators. Reports are in PDF format.
@@img:report-viewer.png Report Viewer
NetCrunch contains about 50 pre-defined reports. The reports are divided into two categories for Node and for Map as they target detailed information about the node or about the map.
Basic node reports include
Basic map reports
You can easily define report based on table view of any of the Atlas View. It can be created from Nodes view or any monitor view such as SNMP or Windows.
This feature can be particularly useful if you define your own custom fields, add them to nodes, and you want a report related to these columns.
@@img:report-from-view.png Report From the View Wizard
It's very easy. You can define Data Collector and add it to Monitoring Pack or to the node.
@@img:data-collectors.png Data Collector Settings
NetCrunch is a scalable, multi-process and multi-threaded asynchronous system.
It processes millions of operations 24x7, and you can rely on it. It consists of many internal processing elements, tasks, and queues. No wonder we have to measure hundreds of parameters inside of NetCrunch to know when and why it might break.
There is no such thing like infinite scalability (the same as no clean diesel engines) claimed by some German software vendors. The system can always run out of resources.
NetCrunch internal architecture looks more like it is a child of the application server and database server with some genes of the operating system.
We strive to improve NetCrunch performance and reliability with every new version, as we always want it to be the best NetCrunch release ever.
NetCrunch is designed to manage thousands of components. NetCrunch does many things automatically so that you can configure hundreds of nodes in just a couple of minutes.
NetCrunch Server runs on x64 Windows Server systems (Windows 2008 R2, Windows 2012 R2). It comes with its web server and an embedded SQL database for storing monitoring events data. You can install NetCrunch on a virtual machine, provided you assign it at least 2 processors and 3.5GB RAM.
The NetCrunch remote administration console can be installed on any Windows machine with Windows 7 or later (32 bit or 64 bit systems). A large HD screen with 32-bit color support is required.
For the best experience, we recommend multiple monitors. Additionally, 50-inch monitors will allow you to see more aspects of the monitored network. However, a Surface Pro type device with a 13-inch screen and Windows 10 will run the console smoothly.
The console always displays real-time information and requires minimal bandwidth to operate as it only transmits data instead of full HTML pages, unlike many other monitoring solutions. It runs smoothly even when the network delay is more than 200 ms. The console can be automated, and it can switch between defined screens automatically based on the switching scenario.
You can browse your network status from any location using the NetCrunch Web Console via HTTP/S, which allows for restricting rights to particular views and operations. You can integrate console user accounts with Active Directory.