Nagios vs. Zabbix | Comparison of network monitoring tools


Popular network monitoring tools Nagios and Zabbix offer a variety of features. See how Nagios and Zabbix compare.

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Nagios and ZabbixComment are some of the most sought-after IT solutions deployed by organizations to monitor large enterprise networks. Here is an overview of what each of these network monitoring tools offers in terms of key features and performance.

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What is Nagios?

Nagios is one of the best network monitoring tools available for most computer systems. It provides multiple alert levels to ensure you are never caught off guard by unexpected downtime. Alerts include Warning, OK, Critical, Unknown, and Pending.

Nagios is the ideal software that organizations can rely on to analyze bandwidth and monitor network obstacles resulting from overloaded data links or problematic network connections. Nagios asks you to configure the interface via text files or use plugins. The monitoring software offers alerting services for servers, switches and applications and is designed to help with solutions such as:

  • Windows Monitoring
  • Linux Monitoring
  • Server monitoring
  • Application Monitoring
  • SNMP Monitoring
  • Log Monitoring

Nagios easily cross-checks parameters such as disk usage, memory usage, CPU load, Post Office Protocol 3 (POP3), Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP), and hypertext transfer (HTP). Its services have built-in base agents to enable service management. These proxies include:

  • Nagios Remote Plugin Executor for remote monitoring
  • Nagios Remote Data Processor for data transport
  • NSClient++ to monitor Windows devices
  • Nagios Cross-Platform Agent to facilitate data flow monitoring on Windows, Linux and Mac

Advantages of Nagios

  • Nagios automatically alerts the technical team when a problem occurs.
  • The tool monitors all major service protocols: HTTP, FTP, SNMP, POP3, SSH, etc.

Disadvantages of Nagios

  • Nagios requires payment to access premium versions. The Nagios XI upgrade starts at $1,995.

What is Zabbix?

Zabbix is ​​a network monitoring tool that allows an organization to collect, transform, analyze and visualize data. This great tool easily integrates with IoT, ticketing, and IT service management (ITSM) systems. With over 80,000 members in its support community, Zabbix offers a wide range of monitoring templates to eliminate manual configuration.

This computer monitoring solution can handle many concurrent devices, where system specifications can be relayed easily from a system resource perspective. This is facilitated by the integration of SNMP agents and Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI). The open source network monitoring software runs in the background to extend its capabilities in:

  • Network performance monitoring
  • Server monitoring
  • Cloud Monitoring
  • Application Monitoring
  • Service monitoring

Zabbix can uniquely monitor databases, cloud services, virtual machines and applications. The program allows changing the configurations through the web interface.

Advantages of Zabbix

  • You can customize the Zabbix dashboard depending on what you want to monitor.
  • Zabbix is ​​a completely free open source network monitoring solution.

Disadvantages of Zabbix

  • Zabbix does not have the functionality to notify the technical team in case of any problem.

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How to compare Nagios and Zabbix?

Nagios vs Zabbix: main differences

The main difference between the two programs is the ability to send alerts and alarms when something goes wrong. Unlike Nagios, Zabbix lacks functionality elements that can be used to send an alert in case of a system problem. On the other hand, Nagios integrates a valuable feature that sends alerts to the technical team in the event of a problem.

Nagios is available in free and premium versions. The free versions have limited functionality, while the premium version requires additional payment. On the other hand, Zabbix tool is easy to install and does not require any additional installation payment.

Nagios is a continuous monitoring tool that runs periodic checks to test system performance and raise an alert for any issues found, while Zabbix is ​​a type of monitoring tool that helps monitor the system and its components. Nagios monitors applications, services, and systems, while Zabbix monitors statistics, memory heap, and networking systems.

Zabbix uses graphs and maps to display data, but the Nagios tool does not have such features. Zabbix previews provide statistics on performance data, unlike Nagios tool.

The Nagios tool facilitates automatic resolution of server issues, while the Zabbix tool requires manual work to fix any bugs that arise.

Zabbix integrates a centralized web management interface for database monitoring and management. The Nagios tool does not have a centralized system to monitor data and the system; rather, it uses the graphical user interface to display web pages.

Nagios vs Zabbix: main similarities

Nagios and Zabbix are excellent network monitoring tools that provide a complete view of the connected network. Both programs monitor the network with a perfect blend of simplicity and depth. Both tools monitor server performance and system health.

Additionally, both tools can run Autodiscover. Nagios integrates the NagiosQL plugin to automatically discover devices. On Zabbix, users can configure scan settings as they wish.

Should you choose Nagios or Zabbix?

Both Nagios and Zabbix are the best network monitoring software; thus, it would be difficult to call an outright winner. As with any type of solution, finding the perfect monitoring tool depends on your uses and your environment. Both of these network monitoring options are flexible and customizable to fit different situations, with features and functionality capable of handling overall network monitoring for your specific needs.


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