How to connect an agent to Pandora FMS

Pandora FMS is an outstanding data center server monitor. Jack Wallen shows you how to connect remote servers to a Pandora FMS virtual machine.

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Image: Jack Wallen

As the name suggests, Pandora FMS (Flexible Monitoring System) is a flexible and highly scalable monitoring system for networks, servers, applications, and virtual environments.

Normally, I'd demonstrate a walk-through of the installation for this powerful server. However, the installation of Pandora FMS is currently in an odd state of broken (with issues surrounding a PHP module causing an inability to install the pandora_server system). Because of this, the best way to get Pandora FMS up and running is by creating a virtual instance of the Pandora FMS Virtual Appliance. With this method, you can easily have a CentOS 7-based instance of the monitoring system up and running in about five minutes. As that process is incredibly simple (and varies, depending upon what virtual machine tool you use), I'm going to assume you can get the Pandora FMS appliance working with relative ease.

SEE: Data center automation research report 2018: Despite growth in data, automation adoption remains slow (Tech Pro Research)

However, (there's always a caveat) what about connecting those remote servers? Let's see how this is done.

VM running, now what?

With your VM up and running, you must point a browser to http://SERVER_IP/pandora_console (where SERVER_IP is the IP address of your server). You will be prompted to log in. The default credentials are admin/pandora. One of the first things you need to do (once you've logged in) is change the default admin password. To do this, click on the user icon in the top left corner, which will open the edit user screen (Figure A).

Figure A

Figure A

Changing the admin user password.


In this new screen, change the admin user password and click the Update button.

You should then be prompted to log in once again (with your newly-changed admin password).

Connecting a remote server

At this point, your instance of Pandora FMS is only set up to monitor itself. Although that's a handy feature, it isn't enough. In order to get the most out of the system, you need it to monitor the other servers in your data center.

I'm going to walk you through the process of connecting an Ubuntu Server 18.04 instance to Pandora. To do that, you must install the Pandora FMS Agent on the remote client (in this case, the Ubuntu Server instance). Note: You can download the agent installers for all supported platforms here. We'll install the agent on Ubuntu from the command line.

Log into your Ubuntu Server. Open a terminal window and issue the command:

wget https://sourceforge.net/projects/pandora/files/Pandora%20FMS%207.0NG/728/Debian_Ubuntu/pandorafms.agent_unix_7.0NG.728.deb

Once that file downloads, issue the command:

sudo dpkg -i pandorafms.agent*.deb

When the installation completes, the agent must be configured. To do that, we need to modify the Pandora FMS Agent configuration file. Issue the command:

sudo nano /etc/pandora/pandora_agent.conf

In that file, look for the line that starts with:

server_ip

Change that line to:

server_ip SERVER_IP

where SERVER_IP is the IP Address of your Pandora FMS server.

Save and close the file. Start and enable the Pandora FMS agent with the commands:

sudo systemctl start pandora_agent_daemon.service
sudo systemctl enable pandora_agent_daemon.service

That's all you need to do on the remote server.

Viewing the agent

Head back to the web browser and click on the Agents button (top button in the left navigation) and then click Views | Agent Detail. In the resulting screen, you should see your new agent listed (Figure B).

Figure B

Figure B

Hive4 is now listed in Pandora FMS.


Congratulations, Pandora FMS is monitoring your newly added remote server. You can now keep tabs on that server from the user-friendly Pandora FMS console. Continue adding all of your servers and devices (such as Android, Windows, iOS, and more) until your entire data center is monitored.

Also see

  • How to install Rancher 2 on Ubuntu Server 18.04 (TechRepublic)
  • How to install the SIPp testing tool on Ubuntu Server 18.04 (TechRepublic)
  • How to install and use the Duplicati cloud backup solution (TechRepublic)
  • How to install the Icinga2 Monitoring tool on Ubuntu Server 16.04 (TechRepublic)
  • Hyperscaling enterprise datacenters through logical aggregation (ZDNet)
  • What your company can learn about data centers from the tech giants (ZDNet)