Below is a excerpt from a post I wrote on www.sizematterstech.com as a follow-up to episode 2 which covered monitoring. I mentioned Solarwinds Alert Central on the show, a very nice – and FREE – tool from Solarwinds that allows you to manage, filter, deliver, and escalate alerts matching certain criteria. I’ve used this tool as a method to recover from “alert fatigue” and also slime down the “get out of bed” email alerts – no more waking up for low level alerts when you’re on call!
We covered Solarwinds Alert Central briefly on episode 2 (available on iTunes or your favorite podcast app via RSS), so I wanted to do a bit more on the product here. The Solarwinds website explains it pretty well at a high level – take all of your alerts, filter and sort them before delivering to the correct person. The question you might have is “why not just set up my alerting software to send to a specific person, or reduce the alerts rather than filter them out?” Fair question; in my experience there are alerts that are informational, alerts you need to take action on during normal business hours, and alerts you need to get out of bed for. The last part is where I think a tool like Alert Central can really help.
Imagine you’ve worked with your business stakeholders, defined your critical systems, what needs to be monitored to ensure they are available, and set your SLAs. Now imagine those alerts, valid say during normal operation, but coming in at 2 A.M. – without getting out of bed and checking your email, how do you know if it’s something you need to respond to? Those are the instances where alert central can shine.
Another great use case, if as an SMB IT person you are lucky enough to have help, you can even use Alert Central to route specific alerts during the day. Maybe you’re more an expert on virtualization matters, and your co-worker messaging products. Why not set the alerts to go to that person? And if that person doesn’t acknowledge the alert, then lets you know? Yea pretty powerful when you get into Alert Central and all it can do.
So, installing Alert Central – it comes prepackaged for your favorite hypervisor – VMware of course… and yea Hyper-V. Head over to the Alert Central site and click the green download button.
Originally published at http://sizematterstech.com/getting-started-with-solarwinds-alert-central/
The very first Size Matters podcast is officially live; you can listen on our blog, iTunes, or your favorite podcast app. This first episode was very fun to record, along with Lauren Malhoit (@malhoit), Mike Stanley (@mikestanley), and Shane Weinbrecht (@Shizrah) we welcomed Trevor Pott (@cakeis_not_alie) as our first guest to discuss what makes an SMB, and what are some of the challenges they face.