I’m looking for a solution to monitor my church’s wifi network. We have 4 wireless access points and 2 repeaters. Ideally, it would monitor any drops in connections or drops in throughput and send alerts. At the minimum, it would alert when you can’t ping or connect via http to the access points/repeaters. Thus far I have tested PRTG (nice, but a little bit overkill. Free to monitor 10 nodes). Next on my test list is SpiceWorks network monitor.
It needs to monitor from within the network.
Anything else I should look at? Looking for something simple and relatively inexpensive.
I use PRTG to do that. Yes, it might be overkill in your case but it does work great for doing exactly what you said. I have some things that I only monitor on Sunday and it is nice to be able to schedule it to only monitor those items during that time period. Last I checked you get 100 sensors for free. I went ahead and bought 1000 and use almost all of them. Everything else I looked at that was close to PRTG was a lot more expensive.
You might check out Observium for a network management solution. It runs on Linux and has both a free and paid for service. It does OK for network monitoring, but the wireless radio side of things is a bit experimental at the moment. You can however setup Alerts for when devices go offline. Not as polished as some other software and there is a bit of up front configuration, but the price is right.
There are a ton of things that can do SNMP or ping checks. I’d actually (and I always do) jump one step further and monitor everything: servers, desktops, printers, routers, APs, switches, etc. There is a lot of benefit to using these tools to be proactive as it can cut back on your workload considerably. You can do that on the big boy open source monitoring solutions like Nagios, Pandora, Zenoss, Zabbix, OpenNMS, LibraNMS, Icinga, etc. You can also do it via an RMM like Pulseway which is a pretty decent RMM for in-house IT.
We went one-stop-shop and have Meraki equipment which comes with a whole host of network management tools (they call it a dashboard). I can monitor and manage the network from anywhere.
Thanks for all the suggestions. We have only 5 computers - only two of which is on most of the time. So our needs are low. I have found PRTG better between it and SpiceWorks Network Monitor. Here is my initial and probably only review of this
SpiceWorks - memory hog (relative), alerts not reliable, (not receiving consistently when tripped AND cleared)., easy to configure. doesn’t require an smtp mail server. No auto-discovery
PRTG- email notifications requires smtp mailer- church account. Alert messages can be over verbose - need to know what to look for. Harder to set up. :Has auto-discovery.