Tag Archives: interview

Monitoring the London Underground with Nathan Liefting and Adan Mohamed

Post Syndicated from Michael Kammer original https://blog.zabbix.com/monitoring-the-london-underground-with-nathan-liefting-and-adan-mohamed/26693/

With just a few days remaining until Zabbix Summit 2023, our series of speaker interviews draws to a close as we talk to Opensource ICT Solutions trainer and consultant Nathan Liefting about how he worked with Adan Mohamed of Boldyn Networks to monitor the London Underground with Zabbix.

Please tell us a bit about yourself and your work.

I’m a Zabbix trainer and consultant for Opensource ICT Solutions. You might also know me from the books Brian van Baekel and I wrote called “Zabbix IT Infrastructure Monitoring.”

How long have you been using Zabbix? What kind of daily Zabbix tasks are you involved in at your company?

My tasks are easy to explain – Zabbix, Zabbix, and some more Zabbix! Opensource ICT Solutions is one of the few companies that focus solely on Zabbix, so I get to work full time with the product, 40 hours a week. I build new environments, integrations, automations, and anything that you might need for your Zabbix environment.

Can you give us a sneak peek at what we can expect to hear during your Zabbix Summit speech?

Definitely! Adan from Boldyn Networks and I will be presenting you with a real use case for Zabbix monitoring. We’ll have a look at how Boldyn has brought broadband network connectivity to the London Underground tunnels and why it’s so important to monitor the equipment that makes that all possible. Of course, since this is THE Zabbix summit, we’ll also look at what the Zabbix setup looks like and share a pretty interesting use case for SNMP traps.

How and why did you come to the decision to use Zabbix as the monitoring solution for your use case?

Boldyn was looking for the best network monitoring solution for their project. Since we offer exactly that, we got to talking and we decided that our favorite open-source network monitoring tool was the way to go. Since then, we’ve been building amazing custom monitoring implementations together. The rest is history.

Can you mention some other noteworthy non-standard Zabbix monitoring use cases that you’ve worked on?

Definitely! Since I get to work on monitoring all day long, we’ve got a lot to choose from. I do most of my work in the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States, and all those markets are super exciting. We’re monitoring infrastructure that keeps planes flying safely and makes sure power grids are up and running, and now we’re also helping to keep people connected to the internet even when they go underground. If you ask me, it doesn’t get a lot more exciting than that – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

The post Monitoring the London Underground with Nathan Liefting and Adan Mohamed appeared first on Zabbix Blog.

Leveraging Telegram as a User Interface for Zabbix with Sven Putteneers

Post Syndicated from Michael Kammer original https://blog.zabbix.com/leveraging-telegram-as-a-user-interface-for-zabbix-with-sven-putteneers/26604/

One of the highlights of any Zabbix Summit is the diverse set of fascinating speakers who show up each year. With that in mind, we’re continuing our series of interviews with Summit 2023 speakers by sitting down with 7 to 7 CEO Sven Putteneers, who has been gracious enough to fill us in on his work, his Zabbix experience, and the details of integrating Zabbix with the popular messaging app Telegram.

Please tell us a bit about yourself and your work.

I’m a 43-year-old computer geek with a strong interest in Open Source software and programming. I work for a big telco, where I help to build and maintain a cloud telephony platform. Apart from that, I administer our Zabbix installation, which we have set up as a multi-tenant platform and which we use to provide a “monitoring as a service” offering to our customers. Aside from my day job, I founded a company (7 to 7), where Zabbix consultancy is part of the services I offer.

How long have you been using Zabbix? What kind of daily Zabbix tasks are you involved in at your company?

I have been using Zabbix daily for the last 7+ years. My daily tasks are configuring new customers and hosts, maintaining our Zabbix deployment, programming integrations with external systems, and thinking about how we can improve our Zabbix installation in any way.

For my side job, I give Zabbix-related advice, help customers solve tough Zabbix problems (e.g. “how to monitor this exotic device”) and roll out Zabbix installations from scratch to a fully functional monitoring platform. I also offer monitoring in an MSP-like fashion for customers who want their infrastructure monitored but don’t want to deploy their own Zabbix.

Can you give us a sneak peek at what we can expect to hear during your Zabbix Summit speech?

I’ll describe how a Telegram bot that is connected to your Zabbix deployment can turn your Telegram app into a small but powerful user interface for your Zabbix. This means not just using Telegram as a one-directional notification mechanism (like email), but allowing you to query your Zabbix, perform actions (like acknowledging alarms), fetch graphs, etc.

Why did you decide to write a bot for Telegram as opposed to other popular messaging systems? Was it simply a matter of preference or were technical considerations taken into account?

Preference was only a factor after we made a first selection based purely on technical criteria. Some of the criteria we had were that it had to be multi-platform (our Zabbix users are on Android as well as on iOS and use Mac, Windows, and Linux on their computers), it preferably had built-in platform support for bots, and the option of sending more than just plain text.

Telegram ticked all the boxes and has some nice extra features that were not hard requirements (like in-place updating of already sent messages instead of just being able to send new messages), so we decided to go with that.

Have you written any other custom integrations for Zabbix?

Yes, but most of these are for internal systems (like our in-house CRM) and are not really interesting outside the company.

I have written some integrations for monitoring (i.e. UserParameter scripts and external scripts -scripts + the accompanying templates) to monitor systems that have an API that is difficult to query with vanilla Zabbix. An example would be TLS certificate monitoring that is a bit more in-depth than what Agent2 currently offers.

I have also fixed some bugs in a script called mib2zabbix, which as the name suggests takes an MIB file as input and outputs a template file that can be imported in Zabbix.
There are a few features I still want to add to the script (like generating the new walk items for efficient SNMP value gathering), but the script as it is has saved us a tremendous amount of time already.

One fun (and useful!) thing I wrote is a script that uses zabbix_sender to feed data to a “fake host” representing all the things we monitor (think of it as an item per monitored host). Because our Zabbix is multi-tenant, we have some naming conventions and rules around mandatory hostgroup membership to control where alarms for a specific host (or trigger) get sent and when.

I did a talk about how we use hostgroups to control action logic at the Zabbix Benelux Conference 2020 (and the same talk again at the Online Meetup in September 2020. The “fake host” alerts us when a host doesn’t conform to our conventions or is misconfigured, so alarm notifications would be prevented from being sent, for example.

The cool thing is that since this is all based on discovery rules and a script that pulls everything from Zabbix through the API and then feeds data about potential problems back through zabbix_sender, new hosts are picked up automatically and are checked for compliance with our conventions within minutes after they’ve been added.


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Simplifying Digital Transformation with Marianna Portela

Post Syndicated from Michael Kammer original https://blog.zabbix.com/simplifying-digital-transformation-with-marianna-portela/26609/

To help everyone in our community get up to speed with Zabbix Summit speakers and their topics, we’re continuing our series of interviews and sitting down for a chat with Marianna Portela of Brazilian mass media conglomerate Globo. Read on to get a preview of her Summit speech topic and see how she uses Zabbix to bring massive live events to millions of users around the globe.

Please tell us a bit about yourself and your work.

I’m a tech lead at Globo, the largest media group in Latin America. It includes over-the-air broadcasting, television and film production, a pay television subscription service, streaming media, publishing, and online services.

How long have you been using Zabbix? What kind of daily Zabbix tasks are you involved in at your company?

I have been working at Globo for 15 years. I’ve been involved in monitoring for 11 of those years, and I’ve been using Zabbix for 10. I help monitor the applications that generate data for live events, and I use Zabbix to generate metrics that support decision-making related to better content delivery quality.

Can you name a few of the specific challenges that Zabbix has helped you solve?

Zabbix allows us to empower our users and supports our entire digital transformation – including many things related to Globoplay streaming. It also helps us monitor live event infrastructure, like the Olympics and World Cup. Previously, when there were technical issues during live events, we would try to figure out what happened after the fact, but no longer – Zabbix gives us a proactive analysis of potential occurrences within live production.

Can you give us a sneak peek at what we can expect to hear during your Zabbix Summit speech?

I’m planning to talk about how we use Zabbix to help ensure the quality monitoring of live production, which is essentially the production and the part of Globo that deals with any type of live event and generates data for things like games, for example. I’ll introduce how we started with actual infrastructure monitoring and how this digital transformation at Globo began, specifically how we managed to enter new areas like content generation, especially live content. Then I’ll also discuss some specifics of how we monitor live event infrastructure.

The post Simplifying Digital Transformation with Marianna Portela appeared first on Zabbix Blog.

Monitoring green power and distributed edge computing infrastructure with Hiroshi Abe

Post Syndicated from Michael Kammer original https://blog.zabbix.com/monitoring-green-power-and-distributed-edge-computing-infrastructure-with-hiroshi-abe/26451/

With Zabbix Summit 2023 almost upon us, we’ve prepared a short and direct interview with Summit presenter Dr. Hiroshi Abe. Dr. Abe, a Research Engineer at the Toyota Motor Corporation, will share his thoughts about how Zabbix is the ideal solution when it comes to monitoring green power and distributed edge computing.

Please tell us a bit about yourself and your work.

I have been working for the Toyota Motor Corporation as a Research Engineer since 2019. My current research topics are related to large-scale monitoring systems that target connected car communications, edge computing, and green IT.

How long have you been using Zabbix? What Zabbix tasks are you involved in every day at your company?

Although I am technically retired, since 2015 I have been a member of the Monitoring team of the Network Operation Center, which is part of the ShowNet building team for the “Interop Tokyo” show event in Japan. I have been working with Kodai Terashima, CEO of Zabbix Japan, to build a monitoring system using Zabbix to monitor the event network required for ShowNet. In my office, we use Zabbix to monitor network and server equipment as well as our R&D environment.

Can you give us a sneak peek at what we can expect to hear during your Zabbix Summit speech?

You might expect to hear something deeply related to cars, and it’s true that much of the data created by cars can be processed using edge computing before being transported to the cloud. However, edge computing for the optimal use of green power will be the main topic of my talk. I’ll discuss a distributed monitoring system that uses Zabbix and Zabbix Proxy as a monitoring system for edge environments and green power in multiple data centers.

What made you go with Zabbix as a monitoring solution for green power and edge computing?

Zabbix Proxy is an easy-to-use distributed monitoring solution. A distributed monitoring system is a must for us because there will be multiple edge computing locations all over Japan.

Are you deploying Zabbix using containers to monitor your DCs?

We used RedHat’s OpenShift to implement the edge computing and data synchronization mechanism. We were able to easily deploy Zabbix in OpenShift as a container using Operator, and the monitoring environment using Zabbix containers is implemented in multiple DCs.

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Zabbix 6 IT Infrastructure Monitoring Cookbook: Interview with the Co-Author

Post Syndicated from Jekaterina Sizova original https://blog.zabbix.com/zabbix-6-it-infrastructure-monitoring-cookbook-interview-with-the-co-author/20122/

We say Zabbix is a universal monitoring system, which is true. In many cases, the Zabbix potential is limited only by knowledge and the ability to use all the functions properly. That is why various training materials, including books, are so important. Nathan Liefting and Brian van Baekel recently presented their new Monitoring Cookbook on Zabbix 6.0 features and made a huge contribution to the existing knowledge pool. One of the book’s authors kindly agreed to tell us more about the issue.

Hi, Nathan! A year ago, we already had an interview with you to mark the Zabbix 5 IT Infrastructure Monitoring Cookbook launch. And now, just a month after the release of Zabbix 6.0 LTS, you published a new version of the book devoted to the latest Zabbix version. How did you manage to do it so quickly?

The last interview was a lot of fun to work on, so I am glad to do one again. Thanks for having me.

Let me jump right in by saying it took a lot of Alpha releases to write all of the new content. Normally we are already on top of new features, compiling them from sources even, to inform the community about the Zabbix development process and make sure our knowledge is up to par to ensure the highest quality for our training. But, with this book, we took it to the next level. Using the early releases, we worked hard to get the book ready by giving ourselves a hard deadline of getting the book to market just 1 month after the official Zabbix 6 release while the publisher needed 3 weeks to perform the copy editing and such. It was challenging, as we didn’t know exactly which features were to be included, and how they were built. We wrote parts of the book without knowing the feature in-depth, during the development phase, as a result, we had to rewrite whole chapters to reflect the actual integration. In the end, we made it and the entire Zabbix community can now use our book to get their Zabbix 6 environment up and running right from the start, with the added benefit for us that we can serve our customers perfectly due to all our in-depth knowledge we’ve gained in the process.

Comparing these two issues, how much do their contents overlap? Should users who already have the 5.0 book consider buying this edition (Zabbix 6 IT Infrastructure Monitoring Cookbook) as well?

It’s important to know that there is definitely an overlap in content. We specifically wanted to include that in the description for the book as well, as we don’t want anyone to think that all content has been remade.

That out of the way, there are a lot of new things as well. For example, all the new major Zabbix 6 features have been added like:

  • High Availability for Zabbix server
  • Business Service Monitoring (SLA’s)
  • The new widgets (Geomaps, single item and top hosts)
  • User roles
  • New trigger syntax

Not only that, but we also made sure to include all the new best practices. Redoing all the tags using the new tag policy and making sure all UI changes are included as well. Every recipe has had a Zabbix 6.0 touch-up and thus everything is current.

Even though it is a second edition you will find a lot of new things, and nothing has been left behind from the older Zabbix version. It can thus be a good purchase, even if you already own the Zabbix 5 version since there was a lot changed, added and improved in the product itself as well.

What background knowledge about Zabbix should the reader of this book have? Are you targeting more beginners or experienced software users?

We target both actually! A lot of technical books take you through the process of settings things up start-to-finish and we are no different. What is different with our Cookbook you don’t have to execute every single chapter to end up with the right result. This is a Packt Cookbook and everything in the cookbook format (as defined by the publisher) has to be able to be configured separately. You can follow the book from Chapter 1 Installing Zabbix and Getting Started Using the Frontend up until the end or you can pick any subject and dive right in.

It’s set up in such a way that it works for everyone, the very beginners and the more advanced users, we want to be there for the community as a whole, and not just the super experienced engineers.

Can you please tell us briefly about the book’s content, in particular, what challenging monitoring aspects have you managed to explain, making them easy to understand and implement?

We tried to include most of the important Zabbix subjects. You will find the basics in the book on Installing Zabbix, using the frontend and setting up users, groups and roles. But besides that, most types of monitoring are also included. We’ll discuss monitoring using the Zabbix agent, SNMP, ODBC, HTTP, JMX, dependent items, calculated/aggregated checks and even external checks.

Of course, Low-Level Discovery is also explained to make sure that we can automate the entity (items, triggers, etc.) creation. Besides that, we think that when working with monitoring data it is important to keep things structured. Thus, we also spend time on using the best practices to set up templates, and use methods like tags to easily filter out data and keep things structured.

For the real Zabbix gurus, we’ll even dive into using the Zabbix API and Python scripts to extend upon the Zabbix functionality. There really is something for everyone. Check out the full list of included subjects here.

Fun fact: Brian van Baekel has a cat named Zabbix

You probably got a lot of feedback and comments about the Zabbix 5 IT Infrastructure Monitoring Cookbook. Can you please share with us what people are saying?

Well, with a lot of pride I can say that the Zabbix 5 book was met with great reviews! We’re happy to be able to help out the Zabbix community because our goal with the book was to give people access to a bundle of Zabbix information. It can be a lot easier to get information in a book format, instead of having to search for separate resources on the internet.

The community has been great with their reviews and we’ve had compliments like

“I found this book a great resource for my network monitoring needs. It has everything I needed. The authors do a fantastic job at explaining Zabbix.

“Excellent book. Highly recommended for IT infrastructure monitoring. I was in the need of server and network devices monitoring so I tried Zabbix.”

We’re super happy with how well the books have been received and really appreciate all of the (Amazon) reviews people have left! If you have to book and would like to leave a review, it is much appreciated and we personally read all of them.

Where is the book available to purchase?

You can get your copy at our publisher’s website, Amazon, or a local retailer. Packt has a great network of suppliers throughout the world that might just have a copy for you. But you can always check out the links below to get your copy:



We’re actually still looking to work with a publisher in Japan, China and/or other locations where a local language might help out the Zabbix community. If you have any ideas for that, feel free to contact me on LinkedIn.

Time flies and the Zabbix 7.0 LTS version is also not too far off. Should the community expect a new book when the new release comes out?

We had a lot of fun working on this Zabbix 6 edition, but at the same time it has taken up a considerable part of our personal time to get this book ready for everyone again. As a full-time Zabbix engineer and Zabbix trainer for Opensource ICT Solutions, there isn’t much time left in the weeks to write. That means that writing is mostly done on the weekends.

But if we find the time to do it again, we’ll definitely get a Zabbix 7 edition out as well! Already trying to make a plan to see if it is in the cards for us again.

The post Zabbix 6 IT Infrastructure Monitoring Cookbook: Interview with the Co-Author appeared first on Zabbix Blog.

Interview with Zabbix Summit Online 2021 speaker: Vittorio Cioe

Post Syndicated from Jekaterina Sizova original https://blog.zabbix.com/interview-with-zabbix-summit-online-2021-speaker-vittorio-cioe/16599/

With two weeks to go until Zabbix Summit 2021, we continue to introduce you to our guest speakers. Vittorio Cioe is already known to our community – he has participated in various Zabbix events, such as Zabbix summits and meetups. This year’s Zabbix Summit is not an exception. We asked Vittorio to tell us a few words about himself and introduce the presentation he will deliver on November 25th.

Hi Vittorio, we are happy to see you among the speakers this year! Would you mind please uncovering what your paper is about?

Hi, happy to be at Zabbix Summit also this year! This year I will cover a topic that is growing interest in the market as far as I can see: infrastructure as code, to create reusable deployment scripts. I will take as an example a Zabbix deployment on Oracle Cloud, using MySQL as a Service. I have decided to go this way because Oracle Cloud is very strong on the infrastructure as code side, and Zabbix it is very straightforward to automate.

You’re already familiar with many of our users and event attendees, but our community is growing, and new members are definitely interested in learning more about the speakers. Tell us please about yourself and your professional activities.

I originally come from Italy but relocated to Poland several years ago. Professionally I am a technology enthusiast, and in the past, I have been working the Security and Digital Transformation space. Finally, 4 years ago I landed at MySQL, which previously I have been a user of. This has been quite an incredible journey which put me in contact with some really amazing technology companies, and among those, Zabbix.

What role does Zabbix play in your professional activities?

Zabbix is one of the Oracle MySQL partners with which we have been able to establish cooperation and I really enjoy working with.

What do you think makes Zabbix stand out from other monitoring solutions?

I believe that the real strength of Zabbix is that the product is Open Source, and it brings the power of an enterprise-level monitoring solution to the broader public which normally could not afford it, giving a lot of companies the possibility of growing.

Have you already seen the summit program and the topics that will be covered? Which presentations would you be interested in hearing yourself?

There are some really great speeches this year! I would really like to listen to the speech of Alexei Vladishev (Zabbix 6.0 LTS – The next great leap in monitoring) and Sergey Sorokin (Take Advantage of Zabbix Services Online).

Interview with Zabbix Summit Online 2021 speaker: Brian van Baekel

Post Syndicated from Jekaterina Sizova original https://blog.zabbix.com/interview-with-zabbix-summit-online-2021-speaker-brian-van-baekel/16174/

We continue to introduce you to the speakers of Zabbix Summit Online 2021. Our next guest is Brian van Baekel – a known Zabbix evangelist and trainer who has educated hundreds of students on all the nuances of working with our monitoring system.

Hi Brian, you are often seen on Zabbix Blog – mainly as the author of technical posts. Tell us, where did you get so much practical experience in using Zabbix?

Well, I started with Zabbix in 2013 and have been working with it ever since. During those years I’ve seen so many different environments. Each with their own challenges. Every challenge forces you to find a new creative solution and if you come across it often enough, you gain experience! I started Opensource ICT Solutions in early 2018 and the only thing we do is Zabbix. Either consultancy, training, or support worldwide, as long as it is Zabbix related. So that is even more experience that’s growing day by day as we’re serving exciting customers around the globe!

Is it true that you started using Zabbix with version 1.8? In your opinion, what are the most significant changes in the Zabbix functionality when comparing Zabbix then and now?

Yes that’s true, the first Zabbix version I started with was 1.8 and at that point I was not impressed with it, to say at least. After a few weeks, I saw the potential and started to enjoy the product more and more. After some time, we upgraded to a newer version of Zabbix where Low-Level Discovery was introduced… and wow! That was (and still is) one of the most powerful things.

In general, it’s not just one significant change that impresses me most as there are countless small and major improvements. In my opinion, it’s better to look at the product as a whole and the most significant change is how mature the product became during those years. If you really want me to name some significant changes, I must think about 3:

  • Low-Level Discovery
  • Tags
  • Dashboards
At the Zabbix Summit 2021, we will be introducing version 6.0 to the community in detail. Have you checked out the roadmap yet? Please tell us, what improvements are you most excited about?

To be honest I am not only checking the roadmap on a weekly basis but following the development rather closely to make sure we can anticipate what’s going to be introduced so we know what to advise customers.

As our customers are mainly on the Long Term Support versions, I am extremely happy that what was introduced in 5.2 and 5.4 will be available in a Long Term Support release. Regarding the new features, I am really excited about BSM(Business Level Monitoring) which will give us a comprehensive look at services instead of hosts and their metrics. That’s extremely valuable. The second thing that seems promising is HA. Although we’re building HA setups ourselves on a weekly basis it’s nice to have something natively available in the product.

Can you tell us about the speech you are going to give at the Zabbix Summit 2021?

Yes of course! So, as I mentioned, working as a Zabbix consultant and trainer, I see a lot of different environments where we have to solve various challenges. One of those challenges I came across is SNMP monitoring where the devices that had to be monitored were totally not able to handle all the SNMP requests. Luckily, they are sending traps. The art is to receive the traps and utilize them in such a way that you know the status of that device within seconds without just relying on the received trap solely. If you’re creative enough, Zabbix allows you to cater for that. So I’m going to explain why you want SNMP polling combined with SNMP traps and how to react on those traps so that you know the complete status of that device. The higher-level message of this talk is “Zabbix is flexible enough. The product is not the limit, your creativity is! Think out of the box and the sky is the limit”


Revealing Zabbix Summit Online 2021 Agenda. Interview with Jacob Robinson

Post Syndicated from Jekaterina Sizova original https://blog.zabbix.com/revealing-zabbix-summit-online-2021-agenda-interview-with-jacob-robinson/15803/

This year’s Zabbix Summit 2021 will take place online on October 21. We decided to introduce you to the speakers and reveal some of the topics that will be covered during the event. Our first interviewee will be Jacob Robinson, who is speaking at this year’s Zabbix summit for the first time.

Hi Jacob, we are pleased to welcome you! We mentioned above that this year would be your debut speaking at our big event about monitoring. What was your primary motivation for giving the talk?

Hi, thank you, that is correct it is my first time speaking at any Zabbix event. My goal is to help let others know the unique way I am using Zabbix so they may benefit from it. I would really like to expand the system I have built and find others to use it and potentially contribute requests and development. I hope that the talk sparks some interest in the community, and I can connect with some people to discuss it more.

Would you like please to uncover your speech a bit? What should summit attendees expect?

Sure, my speech explains a project I developed that automatically detects, identifies, and creates hosts in Zabbix so that users never need to manually create any hosts. It also obtains MAC addresses, switch port configurations, and many other host details that are automatically entered into Zabbix even over large corporate networks.

Can you tell us about yourself and your experience with Zabbix? What exciting projects have you worked on?

I have been using Zabbix for around 3 years now to provide global monitoring of AV, Networking, and Security for WeWork. Everything I have done at WeWork has been very exciting, there have been integrations with several APIs, developing a custom Okta integration with Zabbix, controlling thousands of televisions and tracking electricity cost savings with Zabbix, and the challenges involved with monitoring WeWork’s network of over 150,000 active hosts. I also run a small blog, monitoreverything.net, where I try to write detailed documentation of things that I have done in Zabbix.

Can you tell us about your professional plans? In addition, should we wait for you at the Zabbix Summit in the following years with new and insightful cases (maybe even offline in Riga, who knows)?

My last job was working as an Audio-Visual engineer, and I transitioned into a Systems Infrastructure engineer so I’m not sure what I will do next. I have been enjoying developing and supporting Zabbix so I will likely continue to do that. I plan to be in-person at Zabbix Summit when it is possible!

Zabbix 5 IT Infrastructure Monitoring Cookbook: Interview with the Co-Author

Post Syndicated from Jekaterina Petruhina original https://blog.zabbix.com/zabbix-5-it-infrastructure-monitoring-cookbook-interview-with-the-co-author/13439/

Active Zabbix community members Nathan Liefting and Brian van Baekel wrote a new book on Zabbix, sharing their years of monitoring experience. Nathan Liefting kindly agreed to share with us how the idea for Monitoring Cookbook was born and revealed the main topics covered.

Hi Nathan, congratulations on writing the book. Welcome to the Zabbix contributor community! First, introduce yourself. What is your experience in Zabbix?

Thank you, I’m very proud to have the opportunity to work with Brian van Baekel on this book and very grateful for the work our publisher Packt has put into it as well. My name is Nathan Liefting. I work for the company Opensource ICT Solutions, where I’m a full-time IT consultant and certified Zabbix Trainer.
My first introduction to Zabbix was back in 2016. We were in the process of upgrading a Zabbix 2 instance to the newly released Zabbix 3.0. As a Network Consultant, I was immediately very intrigued by the monitoring system and its capabilities in terms of customization compared to other monitoring solutions.
Since then, I’ve always worked with Zabbix, and when I was working for Managed Service Provider True in Amsterdam, I set up a new Zabbix setup to migrate from the old monitoring solution.

How did you have the idea for the book?

That’s a good question. You might know Patrik Uytterhoeven from Openfuture BV. He wrote the Zabbix 3 cookbook for Packt. Patrik was kind enough to recommend Brian and me to write the new Zabbix 5 cookbook, and from there on out, we started work on it.

Who is your reader? Who would benefit from the book primarily?

The book is about 350 pages, and of course, we can’t explain everything Zabbix has to offer in that page count. So we focus the cookbook on Zabbix beginners that would like to get on that intermediate level. We detail basic topics like data collection with different methods and more advanced topics like the Zabbix API and database partitioning.

I am convinced that the book contains a recipe for everyone that works with Zabbix, and it’s basically a foundation of knowledge that anyone could fall back on. See it as your starter field guide into professionally working with Zabbix.

Do readers need any prior skills in monitoring with Zabbix to master the new knowledge as efficiently as possible?

Definitely not. We detail everything from installation to how to monitor and more advanced topics. Start at chapter 1 with no knowledge about Zabbix whatsoever, and you can read the book. If you think a recipe is about something you already know, simply skip it and read the next one. We wrote the recipes to be as independent of each other as possible, so beginners and more advanced users can get used to the book.

Could you tell us about the content of the book? What information does it provide?

I would like to say everything is covered, but that would be a dream scenario. The book grasps the surface of almost everything you need to know to work professionally with Zabbix. If you know Zabbix, you know it’s possible to write 100 pages about triggers alone. Of course, this would be counterproductive for starters. We kept the recipes graspable for beginners, with valuable information for more advanced users.
Some topics we go over are:

  • Zabbix setup and how to use it
  • Setting up the different Zabbix monitoring item types
  • Working with triggers and alerts
  • Building structured templates according to best practice
  • Visualizing data with graphs, dashboards, etc.
  • Zabbix host discovery and low-level discovery
  • Zabbix proxies
  • Zabbix integrations with media like Microsoft Teams and Slack
  • Zabbix API and custom integrations
  • Upgrading components, database partitioning, and performance management
  • Zabbix in the cloud

There are now many online resources about Zabbix – forums, blogs, YouTube channels. Why did you decide to opt for the print format?

I’m a big fan of sharing resources online, don’t get me wrong. But to me, there is nothing better than an old-fashioned book to have at the ready when I need it. I can read it, and at one point, I’m thinking, “Wait! I read something that could solve our problem”.
Printed media is not dead if you ask me. In my eyes, a book is still the best way to prepare yourself for any subject in IT. But even if you don’t like printed media, we over an amazing collection of information in the old paper format as well as an eBook.

What was your Zabbix learning path? Which resources did you found the best to gather Zabbix knowledge?

Definitely Zabbix official courses. I loved those so much I couldn’t wait to get my trainer certification myself. Now that I have it, I’m providing the official training myself and sharing the Zabbix knowledge I’ve acquired over the years with others like in the book.
Of course, the amazing Zabbix community offers great ways to share knowledge, for example, the Zabbix blog. I used those as well and even templates found on the Zabbix share to reverse engineers them and see how people worked.

Where will the book be available to purchase?

You can find the book on Amazon here.

When you purchase the book, please leave a review, as this really helps us spread the word about the book. I will personally read every review, so I’d love to hear any feedback on the book to improve later revisions and new releases.
If you’re reading this after purchasing, thank you very much for the support. I hope you enjoy the work.

Do you have any further plans for new books?

I’ve just finished writing this book, and it is a significant impact on personal time. I will definitely consider writing another book, but for now, I’ll focus on sharing content for Opensource ICT Solutions and on my personal website. Besides IT engineering, I also like to create other content, like my photography work, which I share on this website.