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Remote Monitoring

Remote monitoring continually checks your systems and platforms for external availability by testing connectivity from regional zones deployed throughout our global data centers.

System status monitoring

Ping check. Monitors server communication and response times. Reports the traceroute path—listing all intermediate servers (or "hops") between the remote monitoring server and the target server—so you can measure traffic path efficiency.

HTTP check. Connects to the web server and retrieves specific content to verify that users can see and interact with your application. This check can also follow redirects and confirm that users can log into your website.

SSH check. Confirms that the target server’s secure shell (SSH) protocol is running and accepting requests, and measures the response time. Also, identifies the SSH fingerprint and notifies you if it changes or becomes corrupted.

HTTPS check. Monitors the validity of the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificate by transmitting HTTP packets over the SSL protocol and verifying security-related information based on the return payload.

Platform status monitoring

DNS check. Confirms that the target domain name server (DNS) can accurately resolve a submitted URL to the correct IP address(es), so that visitors can view your website.

Email server check. Connects to the SMTP (outgoing) email server, and verifies that emails can be sent. It can also retrieve metrics about server capabilities.

Banner monitoring

Retrieves an automatic response from the server to confirm that the expected port is open, taking requests, and initiating communication. Remote banner monitoring supports SSL and works for systems and databases (MS SQL, MySQL, and PostgreSQL).

Agent Monitoring

Get deep insight into your resources—including servers and database instances (anything with a standard OS and network connectivity). This lightweight agent has a small memory footprint, using around 5MB of memory and rarely consuming more than 2% CPU time.

Automatic agent upgrades

What used to be a manual process is now automatically included with Rackspace Monitoring. Automatic upgrades mean your agent is always up to date with the latest features and enhancements, including bug fixes and security patches.

System monitoring

Since the agent reports metrics from inside your server, it can provide rich information that isn’t available from the hypervisor—so you can diagnose problems more effectively.

CPU: Discover if your server’s CPU is being heavily utilized by the kernel, your code, or other processes on the same host.

Load average: Monitor your load average (in 1-, 5-, or 15-minute intervals) to know the average system load over a period of time.

Memory: Know when your application is consuming too much memory, and how much of it is being consumed by the operating system.

File system: Monitor any file system, including Cloud Block Storage volumes, and get alerted if you’re running out of space or available i-nodes.

Disk: Measure input/output operations per second (IOPS) and throughput, so you can identify bottlenecks with greater precision.

Network: Detect network errors, collisions, overruns, and dropped packets, so you can diagnose network interface problems.

Platform monitoring

The Rackspace Monitoring Agent serves your platform components, including databases like MySQL or MSSQL and web servers like Apache.

Apache check. Reports metrics such as the number of worker threads, uptime, and requests per second.

MySQL check. Reports metrics such as row locks, buffer pools, and connection counts. Also applied automatically to all Cloud Databases instances.

Redis check. Monitors the popular NoSQL database for connection counts, evicted keys, and ongoing operations, among others.

Customized monitoring with plugin

Through the Rackspace Monitoring Agent’s plugin framework, you can monitor any aspect of your infrastructure or application. Check out our plugins repository to see if your application is already supported.

Alarms and Notifications

Through the control panel, API, or command line interface (CLI), you can set thresholds ("alarms") that trigger certain actions ("notifications") to be taken on your behalf. This puts you in control of who is notified (and how), depending on the alarm state. For example, you can create a notification plan that sends an email to your operations team if a warning occurs. Then, if the warning escalates to critical status, the notification plan can hit a webhook that triggers both email and PagerDuty notifications to the operations team.

Powerful alarm language

Our easy-to-use alarm language allows you to write very concise thresholds, set conditions, apply functions on data, and more.

Webhook notifications

Provides generic notification integration for customization purposes.

Email notifications

Send email notifications that contain alarm state information and context for the alarm.

SMS notifications

Send SMS notifications to your mobile device, anywhere you have service, including to international numbers. Unlimited free SMS are included with every Cloud account. Standard carrier rates for SMS apply.

PagerDuty notifications

PagerDuty is a SaaS-based operations performance platform that includes smart alerting and escalation, on-call scheduling and incident reporting. Through PagerDuty notification from Rackspace Monitoring, you can ensure the right people for the problem are alerted to decrease resolution times. For details, please see http://pduty.me/rax-pagerduty.

Notification suppressions

Silence specific alerts for a period of time, such as during scheduled maintenance.

Monitoring Data

Data granularity

Collect monitoring data as often as once every 30 seconds.

Data retention

Rackspace Monitoring retains full resolution data for at least 2 days to support Root Cause Analysis (RCA). It periodically consolidates full-resolution data points into coarser data points, which it retains for longer periods of time to support trending analysis. The longest retention times are for daily data, which is at least one year.

Advanced host interrogation

Through API and CLI, you can conduct advanced host interrogation from wherever you are, without the need to log into the server.

System configurations. Confirm the operating system version, check out available network and disk devices, mounted filesystem, and available CPU and memory.

System performance. Retrieve current information for compute, memory, disk, and networking.

Processes and users. Retrieve detailed information about currently running processes and logged-in users.


Signed install binaries

Agent Linux binaries and repositories are signed using public key cryptography, and verified using native distribution methods.

Secure connections

Agents connect to Rackspace Monitoring instances in three data centers using Transport Layer Security (TLS). The agents are packaged with (and trust only) a single root CA certificate that is directly under Rackspace control.

Minimal exposure to risk

The monitoring agent gathers metrics about your system, and it specifically does not run arbitrary commands. This means that even if your API token is compromised, the only thing an attacker can access is your metrics.

Signed updates

Agent updates are verified against a cryptographic digest that is signed by the agent root certificate authority. The signing certificate is separate from the endpoint TLS certificate, and signing is done offline on a single machine. This means that update security is separated from the endpoint.

Open Source

We develop the Rackspace Monitoring Agent entirely in the open, so you can understand how it works. It's available as a package, and supports most popular operating systems. The agent's flexibility allows you to build it on almost any hardware, including Raspberry Pi.

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