Having a remote network monitoring solution in place such as the one used at MIBAR, MAX Remote Management, these days is almost a necessity. Business owners, and IT decision makers, should no longer look at its purchase as an expense. Rather they should view it as an investment in the stability and security of their business. Much like insurance.
We recently had a customer at MIBAR who was proposed a remote monitoring solution for the servers and PCs on their network, but they declined to purchase it. They viewed the software as an unnecessary expense, without much benefit.
Shortly after they decided to not purchase the software, they reported that a couple of their Virtual Servers appeared to have shut down or rebooted overnight at roughly the same time almost every day. As a result of their call, a good amount of time was spent troubleshooting the issue over a number of days, during which time the servers on the network would become at times become inaccessible. The cause of the problem ended up being that the disk drive that housed the virtual servers, and their virtual disk drives, had fallen below the amount of free disk space required to operate the VMs. Once there is insufficient space, the Hyper-V host puts the VMs into a ‘PAUSED’ state in order to prevent them from crashing and being damaged. After disk space was determined to be the issue, space was freed up and the servers ran normally once again.
Having a product such as RMM installed on the network, would have alerted both MIBAR and the customer’s staff that the disk drive was close to running out of required space via an email alert. We could have then taken an action, to free up the needed space, that would’ve prevented the servers from going down. It also would have prevented the lost productivity experienced when all of the users were unable to access the software.
At about the same time, the customer reported that their eCommerce website was down, and their site could not accept customer orders. As a result, they were losing out on potential revenue. Even though this site was running on a totally different physical server, the drive housing the site had run out of disk space as well. This time the issue was easier to diagnose, as the screen shot below details the reason for the site being down. Again, the cause was lack of disk space on the Commerce Server’s C drive.
Once again, rather than being proactive, we were once again forced to be reactive. This time the site being down may have cost their business revenue, as their customers were unable to place orders.
Above is a screen shot of the monitoring software’s Dashboard. It is here that all servers and computers are monitored. All that is required on the devices being monitored is the installation of a small agent that runs in the background. This screen shows the type of checks that can be run against the computers. Things such as disk space, hardware health, performance of various system components, backup, antivirus, etc can be monitored with alerts sent out via email based on certain thresholds for each item being monitored.
Another large benefit of this software is the ability to use the dashboard to connect remotely to any of the servers or desktops listed, without any assistance or intervention by the user. This can be used to troubleshoot an alert that may have been received from the software, or to simply assist an end user with an application issue.
The above issues, experienced by this one customer, is just one example of where RMM remote monitoring software would be a huge benefit. We would be able to prevent server issues, by having advanced notice of a brewing problem. In those cases, where servers do go down, we would be able to know exactly when, and why a server went down. In the absence of that, we are left to troubleshoot and research the problems after they have occurred, instead of preventing them in the first place.
As stated above, this is why Remote Monitoring Software should not be viewed as an expense, but rather an investment in the business.