An Introduction to Nagvis

Nagvis is a visualization utility that is included in all Nagios XI installations. As it’s name suggests, Nagvis can create dynamic visualizations of almost all types of Nagios data. Nagvis is great for organizations that are currently using Nagios and want to set up a large screen onsite to monitor the current status of the system or network infrastructure. To start using Nagvis, select the ‘Nagvis’ link under the Nagios XI home page:

Below I list some of the commonly used features in Nagvis.

Maps

Each display in Nagvis is called a ‘Map’. There are 3 different types of maps: map, automap, and geomap.

Regular Maps

Users can create regular maps under open > WUI. After a map is created, users can access them under the ‘Open’ menu.

Editing the map can be done through the web UI. This involves selecting actions > Edit current map. Once selected, the user can add lines or icons that represent hosts, services, or the map itself. Neutral lines and icons (with no object representation) can also be added. Images can be added as the background of a map as well. To add a background, the image first needs to be added to the /usr/local/nagvis/share/userfiles/images/maps folder.

When clicked, icons and lines redirect users to the object that is linked to the particular icon or line. However, the url attached can be changed to redirect to any other url of choice.

Automaps

Automaps can not be created using the web UI. To create an automap, a configuration file must be created in the /usr/local/nagvis/etc/automaps directory. Automaps create dependency structures automatically as opposed to regular maps. Only a root needs to be specified (done through the web UI) and the automap will dynamically generate the rest of the nodes. Automaps are also able to specify child layers which specify how many levels of childs should be displayed in the visualization.

Geomaps

Geomaps are screens with special support from Open Street Map to render geographical maps. Most of the configuration for geomaps is done through map configuration files. Note that a csv file that contains the Nagios hosts to render and the geographical coordinates of each host needs to be created and placed under the etc/geomap directory. This is how the demo geomap configuration looks like:

Unrelated Dependencies

When creating maps for system or network infrastructure, your Nagios object dependencies may not always be in a parent-child relationship. An alternative to modeling dependencies is to use BPI objects. You can set the dependencies type through BPI and use the BPI host or service object to represent the entire relationship between a set of objects.

With some effort, you can make your maps look like this:

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