How To Use Cacti Monitoring Tool

There are numerous techniques to monitor devices, including switchport, span port, and netflow. Today I’ll go through how to use SNMP and Cacti to monitor routers and switches’ bandwidth, CPU, and other parameters.

An “Internet-standard protocol for managing devices on IP networks” is known as the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). Routers, switches, servers, workstations, printers, modem racks, and other devices frequently support SNMP. The majority of the time, network management systems employ it to keep an eye on network-attached devices for issues that demand administrative intervention. According to the Internet Engineering Task Force, SNMP is a part of the Internet Protocol Suite (IETF). It comprises of a set of protocols for the application layer, a database schema, and a number of data items for network management.

Cacti is a comprehensive network graphing solution created to take advantage of the data storing and graphing capabilities of RRDTool. Fast polling, sophisticated graph templating, a variety of data collecting techniques, and user management tools are all included with Cacti right out of the box. All of this is included within a logical, simple-to-use interface that works for deployments as small as LANs up to intricate networks with hundreds of devices.

Click “Add link” after selecting “Management” and “Graph Trees.” Fill out the “Name field, then press “Create.

Select “Management,” “Devices, and then “Add from the menu. Add up the “Description,” “Hostname,” and “SNMP Community sections, choose the “Cisco Router Host Template, and then click “Create.”

Select the data you wish to track by clicking “Create Graphs for this Host,” then hit the “Create” button. I have chosen to monitor Fastethernet0/0, Fastethernet0/1, Dialer1, and CPU in this lesson.

Go to “Management,” “Devices,” check the box next to the device, and then under “Choose an action,” choose “

Place the object on a tree and press the button.

The graph is available in the “graph tab” after 15 minutes. You didn’t notice anything earlier.

Below is a Cacti configuration tutorial video:

Plugins like these might be helpful:

  • thold: data discovered in any graph alerting
  • monitor: uses tiny symbols to show the host’s status. Blue for healing, Red for falling, and Green for rising
  • realtime: a method to view Cacti graphs with a resolution of upto 5 seconds.
  • Weathermap is a network visualization tool that uses data you already have to provide you with a map-based overview of your network.

Cacti monitoring tool: what is it?

As a front-end application for the free, widely used data recording program RRDtool, Cacti is an open-source, web-based network monitoring and graphing tool.

[3] With Cacti, users can poll services at predefined intervals and graph the information that is obtained. Time-series data of metrics like CPU load and network bandwidth consumption are typically graphed using it. [4] Monitoring network traffic by using the Simple Network Management Protocol to poll a network switch or router interface is a typical use (SNMP).

Since the front end may support numerous users, each with their own graph sets,[4] web hosting companies[5] (especially those that specialize in dedicated servers,[6] virtual private servers, and colocation providers) occasionally utilize it to show their clients’ bandwidth data. It can be used to set up the data collecting itself, making it possible to monitor some settings without manually configuring RRDtool. Cacti can be enhanced using shell scripts and executables to monitor any source. [8]

Cacti can employ one of two back ends: “Spine” (formerly Cactid), a C-based poller that can scale to thousands of hosts, or “cmd.php,” a PHP script ideal for smaller installations.



How does Cacti track network activity?

The Round-Robin database tool’s time series data are visualized using the free network graphing program Cacti (RDD tool).

The utility uses SNMP to poll network equipment like switches and routers, then plots the output. CPU load, temperature, uptime, and network bandwidth utilization are some of the statistics that are polled.

Here, we’ll concentrate on how you can use the cacti graphs to track your internet usage.

As seen below, you may see your current consumption in the preview mode for both inbound and outbound traffic.

By altering the time and date using the dropdown and textboxes next to present, you can also see your previous consumption.

All associated graphs can be seen in list form in the list view, and when you click on a specific graph, all the daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly graphs are shown. In the first graph, you can see your current utilization. The incoming displays traffic entering the LAN through a certain interface, whereas the outbound displays traffic leaving the LAN.

If you subscribe for 101Mbps, the graph will become flat and stop at 101Mbps when you are utilizing all of your available bandwidth. The bandwidth you subscribe for would also be equivalent to your inbound or outgoing value.

In the next post, we will discuss how to install and configure Cacti on your network if your service provider does not grant access to the Cacti graph.

How is Cacti implemented?

The appropriate repositories must first be added to apt. To accomplish this, use the command sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list.d/cacti.list to create a new file and add the following information:

Save and close the file, then use the following commands to update and upgrade Ubuntu:

What distinguishes Nagios from Cacti?

A monitoring and alerting system with graphing capabilities is called Nagios (if you pay for it).

When I last used Cacti, years ago, it did not have alerting features, and the Cacti website makes no mention of them either. Cacti is a graphing system.

The two are connected (and frequently used in tandem to avoid purchasing the commercial Nagios implementation), although their primary purposes are different: Cacti examines the long-term past, while Nagios (without graphing) focuses on the Now (present conditions and alarms).

Is zabbix preferable to Cacti?

Based on user preference data, compare Cacti vs Zabbix. With 17 reviews, Cacti has a rating of 3.9/5. Zabbix, in contrast, has 145 reviews and a rating of 4.3/5.

How is a cactus graph read?

To create a new graph tree item, just select the type you desire, enter the value for that type, and click Create. You can modify the branch that any item belongs to by adjusting its Parent Item field. Clicking the Add link to the right of any branch will add a new item below that branch.

On Windows, how do you utilize a cactus?

On the computer you wish to install Cacti on, download the Windows installer. Visit to get the most recent copy. and click the download button at the first post’s end. Installer should be saved to desktop. Click the setup file twice.

How does the SNMP protocol function?

An Internet Standard protocol called Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) is used to control and monitor network devices linked through IP. Using SNMP, a variety of devices, including wireless devices, servers, CCTV cameras, load balancers, routers, switches, and firewalls, may communicate. These devices’ data are gathered, organized, and sent through SNMP for network monitoring, administration, and fault isolation. Both the monitored endpoints and the monitoring system rely on SNMP in one way or another.

Is Cacti a server for syslog?

I discovered last week that utilizing the Syslog-NG plugin for Cacti is not completely documented. Despite not using Cacti, I’m constantly looking for web interfaces to pair with syslog-ng. So I decided to experiment with Cacti and its syslog plugin while documenting my progress. Re-implementing the published example configuration for Syslog-NG and using it seemed to be the only thing that needed to be done. In reality, it was more complicated, and I ultimately had to give up for lack of time. I continue to share my findings in the hopes that they will assist others in getting syslog-ng to work. If you are able to make it work and if my post was helpful to you, kindly let me know!

Syslog plugin in a nutshell

First, a brief explanation of the syslog plugin’s purpose and operation. It is a Cacti plugin that may display log messages on the Cacti web interface and deliver warnings when specific conditions are met. It expects a MySQL database to contain log messages. This typically indicates the presence of a central syslog server, which gathers logs from other networked devices and pushes the log messages into a MySQL database. The same database that Cacti uses may be used, or a separate database just for syslog messages may be used.

Insert logs into database

The installation documentation explains how to use syslog-ng to gather messages and send them to a central place, but it doesn’t explain how to use it to put logs into a MySQL database. So, the following is an example of an experimental syslog-ng configuration:

What is Cacti?

You can enter data and information feeds to the platform using Cacti, an opensource RRDTool (Round Robin Database Tool), and Cacti will automatically create precise graphs and diagrams based on the feeds. Downloading Cacti is free, and it includes frequent patch updates and mods. To support the Cacti developers, go to their website.

Key benefits of using Cacti

  • Displays and graphs: By providing Cacti with data and information, the platform automatically interprets the codes and generates dynamic charts and displays that accurately depict the data.
  • Open source and free downloads: Cacti is completely free to download and is used to receiving frequent patch updates and integrations, both of which are available for free download.
  • Data sources and gathering: You can edit and update any Cacti feed as needed. You are able to view exactly what Cacti shows in the final product because to the code’s complete transparency.
  • User management and displays: Cacti lets you govern data flow and completely customize your graphs. In just a few minutes, Cacti generates the data, providing you with precise graphs and visualizations.

We founded The OpenNMS Group in 2004 because we were looking for a better way to take care of carrier and enterprise clients. We saw how the established, proprietary solutions were expensive, inflexible, and hard to deploy. We saw how clients had to change their business process to fit the tool instead of the other way around. There had to be a better way, and we were just the team to build it.

The system we developed evolved into the OpenNMS network monitoring platform, a real open source platform that oversees enterprise and telecom networks globally, from hospitals to streaming services.

Without any assistance from us, hundreds of businesses use OpenNMS, the first entirely open source enterprise-grade network service monitoring software, on a daily basis. It is really simple to deal with. Additionally, it is completely free as true open source.

We are pleased to welcome you to the table as the proud designers and upkeeprs of the OpenNMS platform. Whether you are in San Francisco, Auckland, or Dubai, we offer training, support, custom development, and consulting from our headquarters close to Research Triangle, North Carolina, or at your site (depending on Covid limits).