As any good network administrator knows, you need to have good monitoring systems in place to know what’s going on with your equipment. But we do have to ask ourselves – at what point is the cost of monitoring prohibitive in relation to the network ? In the past, monitoring systems were all fairly large-scale and designed for large, enterprise environments. Whether it was hardware, software or environmental monitoring, it wasn’t cheap and it was always a large project to undertake.
Enter Monnit. Monnit is a company that saw an opportunity in low-cost monitoring. They developed a wireless method to get small form-factor sensors to communicate with a base station that would report to a cloud (or on-premise) monitoring software. The solution wasn’t specifically meant to be used only by the IT industry, but that doesn’t mean that the IT industry can’t adapt this technology for its own purposes and needs. For example, some of the sensors available are: Wireless Airflow Detector, Wireless Asset Sensor, Wireless Magnet Detection Sensor, Wireless Light Detection Sensor, Wireless Voltage Meter, Wireless Motion Detection Sensor, Wireless Temperature Sensor. All these sensors have IT applications without even thinking too much out of the box. Wireless Airflow Detectors could be used to ensure that your air conditioning unit is putting out the proper amount of air flow. Wireless Temperature Sensors could be used to ensure that the room temperature isn’t getting too high and exposing equipment to premature failure. Wireless Voltage Meters could be used to monitor the battery health of UPS battery backup systems. Wireless Motion Detection Sensors could be used to log physical traffic / access in and out of your server room.
Most of the sensors are between $49.00 and $99.00, which is very affordable compared to the more industrial-grade solutions out there. Included with your sensor kit is FREE access to Monnit’s cloud based monitoring software. This browser-based system is where you can setup things like alerts – where the system can alert you if one of the sensors goes above or below a pre-defined threshold. There are also more advanced alerts and reporting available as well, which can be accessed via a paid subscription account.
More can be learned about Monnit’s monitoring solutions on their website, and more specifically, you can read more about the available sensors here: http://www.monnit.com/products/Wireless-Sensors/Commercial-Coin-Cell