Friday, March 14, 2008

ITM AIX Premium agents - an Overview

I recently got a chance to implement AIX Premium agents for one of our customers in a production environment. This article briefly discusses about our experience with these agents and also discusses about the pros & cons of these agents.

Installation

Installation of these agents is similar to Unix OS agents. There is a minor gotcha though. IBM currently offers "System P" SE edition as a free download with 1 year support, but don't confuse them with the "AIX Premium" agents which are available for current ITM customers. The "System P SE Edition" consists of agents for AIX Base, VIO and CEC whereas the "Premium" one consists of "AIX Premium", CEC and HMC agents. (Check with your IBM Sales rep about your entitlement).

Use the "AIX Premium agents" C101HIE.tar from Passport advantage and installation is very similar to usual agent installation. Make sure that you install the agent support files on your TEMS/TEPS servers.

What is the difference?

So what is new with "AIX Premium" agents? Of course the workspaces are different and the attributes provide AIX specific information such as LPAR, entitlement, Volume Group information and paging space that are NOT available with the generic Unix OS agents. You should be able to define situations to monitor these resources just like you would do for Unix OS Agents. This information could be very useful for AIX administrators.

You can find more information about this agent at the IBM Information Center for AIX Premium agent.

Rollout Considerations

The advantage of getting AIX specific information is really nice and most of admins would like it better than the Unix OS agents. However, there are couple of factors that you might want to look into before deciding whether to go forward with System P agents. One thing is the level of support and fixes available right now. Currently the UNIX OS agent is part of the "core" ITM release strategy and gets updated with every fixpack whereas AIX Premium agent is pretty much like the special type of agents such as DB2 agent, SAP agent etc. Since this is a fairly new type of agent, we don't know whether it will be integrated into IBM Fixpack release strategy.

One other issue is the added complexity of managing another type of agent. If you are happy with the current UNIX OS agent, then you could probably experiment it in your test environment and see if you need the features of AIX Premium agents.

1 comment:

Karthik said...

How can Log file monitoring be achieved through OMNIBus? Any pointer to this would be much appreciated.