For many IT teams, a major component of their work is monitoring and maintaining in-house servers. These machines can range from on-premise shared file storage to remote databases and data warehouses. In most cases, these servers are critical company infrastructure and losing access to the server would be bad for employee productivity. In this article, we’ll look at how remote monitoring and management (RMM) can make babysitting your company servers easier than ever.
Times are Changing for Remote Servers
For nearly 20 years, creating a company server has been the go-to strategy for sharing data and restricting access within an organization. For some companies, the server lived in a closet in the office. For others, entire rooms of servers was the heartbeat of data flowing through the organization.
In the early days (and even today for some companies), logging into each server individually and manually checking status and performance was very time consuming. And often, for IT teams the first sign of trouble was when someone in the office complained of server access issues. These manual checks were annoying to perform, easy to forget, and often left problems to fester and grow before needing an emergency, all-hands fix.
With remote work and the rise of bringing your own device, consistent access to servers has only become more important. Of course, many companies have moved their servers offsite to cloud providers, a great option but one that’s not feasible for every company. For those companies maintaining servers in 2020, adding automated monitoring and management tools to those servers is a must-have.
Key Data Points from Remote Server Monitoring
Adding RMM software to servers is all about empowering IT teams with data and fast access to be able to troubleshoot issues and track performance. While even simple logging can provide information on errors and downtime, the best monitoring software will provide deeper insights into system health.
Live data about performance is the biggest benefit of remote server monitoring. With agents installed on all servers, IT team members can get up-to-date information on disk space, CPU & memory usage, and running processes on servers. This data also includes information on which versions of software and operating systems are installed on servers.
When something goes wrong or a status check passes a certain threshold, remote monitoring knows about it immediately and can be configured to send emails, texts, or other messages to IT teams to help get things back online and escalate the biggest issues.
Tracking Demand for Remote Servers
While status checks and error notifications are the primary purpose of RMM software, logging and collecting this information can also provide interesting historical insights. Automated logging of data points and server access means you can graph and interpret patterns in data access, high demand, and latency across the network. Fast, efficient servers translate directly to productivity for your business. The ability to review performance and usage patterns helps IT decision makers plan next steps for expanding or optimizing infrastructure.
Historical data also means you can go back and review the logs when something goes wrong. The error that took down the server may have come from an unexpected place upstream. Without historical logs, those errors would be difficult to track down. The best remote monitoring software provides automated logging and tracking that you can customize to meet your needs.
Unified Interface for Tracking All Servers
Remote monitoring on servers also allows you to standardize your checks and policies across all servers in your company. As your IT infrastructure grows in complexity, getting a unified interface in order to monitor all your servers from one location should be a priority.
In turn, adding RMM software to your servers should make granting and limiting server access a breeze. With Level, for instance, adding access is as easy as editing user permissions in the Level interface. Create access groups and grant access to a standard set of machines within seconds.
Remote Server Monitoring is a Security Must-Have
Remote monitoring makes it easier to identify problems when things go wrong. Often, this means an internal issue or a bug in some underlying software. However, occasionally things go wrong for malicious reasons. When your organization is under attack, you want to know immediately. Immediate notifications of breaches or irregular access patterns is a major reason to add RMM software to your servers.
Additionally, RMM software can help keep software patched and up-to-date, avoiding many security vulnerabilities in the first place. Moreover, you can establish policies and roll out updates across all machines in sync, guaranteeing that every machine in the network has been patched.
To protect from ransomware and natural disasters, you should also utilize remote backups of company data. Again, RMM software can help here, both with creating and restoring backups of your data to offsite storage in the case of a catastrophic attack.
Secure & Reliable Server Access
Times are changing for how work gets done. As IT support increasingly happens remotely, it’s critical that your servers are also part of your remote monitoring and access plan. With great RMM software (like Level) installed, you can rest easy knowing that your servers are healthy, up-to-date, and easy to access.
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