Zenoss Service Dynamics – Unified Service Assurance for the Hybrid IT Datacenter


New Challenges

Today’s IT environment has created new demands on IT operations. While many of the latest developments – such as virtualization and cloud – create new opportunities, they also make it even more difficult to deliver and assure consistent service levels to end users. New challenges include:

  • Dynamic Infrastructure – real-time understanding of shared, mobile infrastructure
  • Hybrid Delivery – managing seamlessly across physical, virtual, and cloud
  • Cost Pressure – streamlining operations and maintaining a competitive cost structure

New Approach

Zenoss addresses these new demands with a new approach in the design, development and delivery of Zenoss Service Dynamics. The key ways that Zenoss is different from other solutions are also key tenets for success in delivering IT services in this new era of IT:

  • Unified Product – no more silos; one product for monitoring, events, impact & analytics
  • Real-Time Service Model – the key to relevance and automation in a dynamic datacenter
  • Open Extensibility – easy, open interfaces and active community of developers

New Experience

The result is dramatic. Enterprises, service providers and online businesses that use Zenoss Service Dynamics are able to overcome the challenges of operating the modern, hybrid datacenter at scale while improving their business impact in several ways, including:

  • Improved Service Quality – reduced downtime, improved performance and SLA delivery
  • Improved Responsiveness – more agile operations, rapidly satisfy new requests
  • Lower Cost of Operations – streamline operations and lower cost of management
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Business Services

Zenoss enables users to group their IT infrastructure into systems that represent IT services. For example, a system may consist of all the IT infrastructure used to provide a web site. Zenoss also provides the ability to create groups based on geographic locations.

  • Group related infrastructure into IT services known as systems
  • Create geographic groups that map IT infrastructure to its physical locations
  • Google Maps integration shows outages directly on the geographical view
  • Use systems to quickly find all the open events related to an IT service


Zenoss monitors the performance & availability of software applications such as databases, Java application servers & web servers.

Monitor performance and availability of Java application servers and Java virtual machines using JMX:

  • Apache Tomcat App Server
  • BEA WebLogic Server
  • IBM WebSphere Application Server
  • JBoss Application Server

Monitor the performance and availability of various databases, including roundtrip query time:

  • MySQL
  • Oracle
  • PostgreSQL
  • Microsoft SQL Server

Monitor Microsoft Exchange and Active Directory

Use synthetic transactions to check web site availability

Create custom SQL queries to verify databases are responding in a timely manner

Virtual Servers

Zenoss provides comprehensive monitoring of your entire virtual infrastructure. The performance & availability information for the virtual and physical infrastructure is automatically correlated and displayed together in a single pane of glass.

  • Automatic discovery and inventory of the entire VMware vSphere environment including: VMs, ESX servers, clusters, and data stores
  • Monitor performance of VMs including memory, disk & CPU
  • Real-time detection when VMs move from one VMware host to another (called VMotion)
  • Zenoss is a VMware Ready certified solution
  • Integration with VMware Virtual Center and vCenter Server

Cloud Monitoring

  • Monitor the the performance & availability of Amazon EC2, OpenStack and CloudFoundry instances
  • Automatically discover EC2 instances as they are added and removed
  • View performance reports across all EC2 instances and instance types
  • Setup in a matter of minutes using Amazon’s authentication services

Physical Servers

Zenoss monitors the performance & availability for the most popular server operating systems including: Windows, Linux and UNIX. Monitoring is done remotely (agentlessly) and does not require any software to be deployed on the target machines being monitored.

  • Agentless technology allows monitoring to be set up in minutes
  • Linux and Unix OS monitoring can be fully secure using Secure Shell (SSH)
  • Native Windows monitoring using WMI & Perfmon
  • An inventory of software packages installed on each server is automatically created
  • Ability to monitor Windows services and Linux/UNIX processes


  • Zenoss monitors the performance & availability of virtually any network device including routers, switches and firewalls.
  • Monitor any SNMP enabled network device
  • Understand your network’s dependencies by using the Layer 3 topology view
  • Get detailed information on network interface bandwidth utilization
  • Find out what software is running on the network device


Zenoss monitors the environmental conditions of server hardware including temperature and humidity. Zenoss is also integrated with devices that measure environmental conditions of the entire data center.

  • Measure hardware environment of both Dell and HP Servers
  • Monitor data center environmental conditions from any SNMP enabled sensor device such as Websensor
  • Monitor the availability of Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS)


The following is a sample list of some of the network devices, operating systems, and software applications that are currently monitored by Zenoss. Open standards and APIs allow organizations with special needs to create their own ZenPacks.

Network Devices

  • Alvarion WiFi
  • BigIP LTM Virtual Server
  • BlueCoat Appliances
  • Brocade Switches
  • Cisco IP SLA
  • Cisco Security Appliance
  • Colubris Wireless
  • Fortigate
  • Funkwerk
  • IronPort Email Security & Relay Appliances
  • Juniper
  • LTM Virtual Server
  • MRV wireless
  • Netasq
  • NetScreen
  • Nortel
  • Raytalk Wireless
  • SourceFire

Operating Systems

  • Sun Solaris
  • HP-UX
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux
  • CentOS Linux
  • Fedora Linux
  • Debian Linux
  • Ubuntu Server Linux
  • openSUSE Linux
  • SUSE® Linux
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Mac OS X
  • Netware Loadable Module
  • BSD

Virtual Infrastructure

  • Citrix XenServer
  • VMware vSphere v4
  • VMware Virtual Center (VI 3)
  • Amazon EC2

Application Servers

  • Apache Tomcat Application Server
  • BEA WebLogic Server
  • ColdFusion MX
  • IBM Websphere Application Server
  • Java Applications via JMX
  • Java Virtual Machines
  • JBoss Application Server
  • Microsoft Messaging and Queuing Server


  • MySQL
  • Oracle
  • PostgreSQL
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Generic SQL Queries
  • Round-trip SQL time

Web Servers

  • Apache Web Server
  • Microsoft IIS
  • Server Load Balancing Virtual Server
  • Squid
  • Web (HTTP) Transactions

Microsoft Technologies

  • Microsoft Active Directory
  • Microsoft Exchange
  • Microsoft IIS
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Microsoft Terminal Services
  • Microsoft Windows Services


Brocade SAN Switches

EMC Celerra,/li.

NetApp Filers


  • SugarCRM


  • LDAP Queries
  • ASSP Anti-Spam
  • VPN Tunnels
  • Microsoft Active Directory

Email Servers

  • Microsoft Exchange

Power & Environment

  • APC UPS PowerNet
  • Dell Servers
  • Eltek Power Systems
  • HP ProCurve Switches
  • HP Servers
  • HP Systems Insight Manager Adents
  • HP Temperature Sensors
  • Netbotz
  • Powerware UPS
  • Sentry Cabinet Power Distribution Unit (CDU)
  • Websensor


  • DIG
  • DNS
  • FTP
  • Generic Printer Monitor
  • IRC
  • Jabber
  • NNTP
  • NTP
  • RPC
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As enterprises and service providers drive towards the “IT-as-a-service” model, the need for a new class of IT operations solution has emerged that offers scalable, automated, real-time service assurance and analytics across the entire hybrid cloud environment. Operations must move beyond device level uptime stats and general availability and be able to answer the hard questions being asked by the business service owners.


With Zenoss Service Dynamics, IT operations can manage their ever-growing physical and virtual devices as services instead of individual data points. At scale, service level management is one of the biggest challenges confronting IT. Zenoss takes the guesswork out of knowing when an infrastructure event, such as a drive failure, puts critical business services at risk and enables a proactive response before service users and customers are impacted.

Unify and Automate Impact and Root Cause Analysis

Zenoss Service Dynamics delivers the following service impact and event management capabilities:

  • Real-Time Service Model – Automatically build and maintain service dependency mappings with real-time discovery and topology modeling
  • Dynamic Service Impact Analysis – Maintain operational awareness of service health with next generation service impact analysis that leverages patent-pending “policy-gate” technology along with a real-time service model
  • Automated Root Cause Analysis – Quickly and automatically identify root cause of performance and availability issues with next generation root cause analysis that reduces event storms to a prioritized list of most likely incidents leveraging a patent-pending confidence ranking algorithm
  • Automated Service Assurance & Remediation – Automatically respond to conditions in your environment to ensure service levels are maintained in real time; enables critical cloud operations capabilities including auto-scaling of cloud-based applications and real-time workload bursting across private to public clouds
  • Unified Event Management – Aggregate and manage events for your entire IT stack across your virtual, physical, and cloud deployments with an next generation event management system that provides automated event normalization and enrichment, and is easily extended and scaled through an embedded enterprise message bus
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A critical success factor to operating a dynamic infrastructure at scale is the ability to make short and long-term planning decisions. Cloud operators are finding out there are an endless list of questions to address.

  • Are my services meeting the needs of my customers? If not, where is the problem?
  • Is this a trend that I need to address?
  • Is this customer like other customers?
  • How can I become more efficient?
  • When do I have to buy more hardware, and where can I squeeze out more utilization?

Deep Understanding Throughout Your Cloud

With Zenoss Service Dynamics, operators of cloud infrastructures gain access to a unified, turnkey, advanced analytics capability that provides immediate insight into utilization trends across all layers of the infrastructure including networks, storage, servers, virtual machines, applications and cloud services. This insight is critical because it allows operators to determine consumption trends, optimize infrastructure utilization, forecast capacity needs and charge for their services.

Zenoss.Analytics.OptimizationZenoss leverages a unified relationship model of the entire IT environment. This powerful object-based management model is built and maintained automatically and enables Zenoss to analyze and report on all the devices in the environment and their relationships – networks, servers, virtual devices, software, and applications – as well as custom devices such as power supplies and temperature sensors.

With analytics and optimization in Zenoss Service Dynamics, you’ll get:

  • Turnkey Operations Data Warehouse – Automatically aggregates and normalized configuration, performance and event history for your entire IT environment across physical, virtual and cloud-based infrastructure and applications
  • Unified Historical Analytics – Understand utilization and health trends across your IT entire infrastructure including tenant-based consumption and availability reporting; gain deep, timely insight through drag-and-drop dashboards, out-of-the box reports and powerful ad-hoc analytics all available through a multi-tenant web portal
  • Predictive Analytics – Forecast capacity needs and anticipate availability problems through predictive trending that allows you to visualize and proactively manage upcoming operational issues and infrastructure requirements
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Traditional IT management approaches break down when deployed into highly virtualized and Cloud infrastructures. While the basics of performance and availability management are still the same, dynamic infrastructures introduce a new layer of complexity, which has to be managed in order to guarantee service delivery.

Monitor Everything. Everywhere.

Zenoss.Resource.ManagementZenoss is a unified solution that delivers IT resource monitoring to your entire dynamic IT infrastructure, wherever it is deployed – physical, virtual, or in the Cloud. Zenoss manages your networks, servers, virtual devices, storage, and Cloud infrastructure and provides visibility and predictability into the performance of your IT environment.


Zenoss Service Dynamics delivers:

  • Dynamic Discovery – Automatically maintain real-time inventory and configuration details for entire IT environment; includes real-time relationship tracking of dynamic relationships common in virtualized and cloud-based infrastructures
  • Unified Resource Monitoring – Unify and automate performance, availability and event monitoring of networks, servers, storage and applications across your physical, virtual and cloud-based environments with a single, model-driven, horizontally-scalable, extensible collection platform.
  • Automation – From simple notifications to complex integrations with Orchestration/Provisioning solutions, Zenoss enables automated IT Ops.
  • Simplified Operations – Zenoss is an open and extensible solution that reduces complexity and streamlines IT Ops, DevOps, and more.

Model-driven Management

At the heart of Zenoss is a unified model of the entire IT environment. Zenoss is based upon a powerful object-based management model that is built and maintained automatically. All devices in the environment can be modeled – networks, servers, software, and applications – as well as custom devices such as power supplies and temperature sensors.

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last modified: April 1st, 2015 by Bharzog