SNMP is one of the most commonly-used communications protocols online. Short for “Simple Network Management Protocol,” it belongs to the application layer of the Internet protocol suite, a set of popular online protocols. Other protocols in the application layer include HTTP, FTP, SMTP, and DHCP.
SNMP originated in the 1980s as networks were growing in size and complexity. Today network administrators use SNMP to get performance information about the devices on their network. SNMP monitoring includes getting data from SNMP-enabled devices about their activity, like bytes, errors transmitted and received, or connection speed.
SNMP Monitoring Software Benefits
You need a way to manage all your network devices. It can be overwhelming to try to manage it all, especially if you have a small network team, or if you have a rapidly-growing network.
Monitoring software for SNMP helps capture information about how your SNMP-enabled devices are performing. Most devices speak SNMP, and this could include everything from network equipment and servers to printers and applications.
A monitoring tool can also help with inventory and asset management and security.
Lastly, a reliable SNMP monitoring tool helps anyone reliably monitor large quantities of data from a single console with limited resources—even if you're a one-person IT team. More efficient monitoring can give you peace of mind, knowing you can monitor traffic in real time, identify performance slowdowns, avoid bandwidth and server performance issues, spot trends, and improve the overall health of your network.
Meet Intermapper, Your Go-To for SNMP Monitoring
Intermapper is network monitoring software for Mac, Windows, and Linux that can easily and reliably monitor all your SNMP-enabled devices. Unlike other SNMP-monitoring tools, Intermapper comes with built-in SNMP probes you can use to monitor all kinds of equipment—and you can also build your own.
Along with flexible monitoring for anything with an IP address, here are more reasons IT professionals love Intermapper:
Live visual mapping
Intermapper creates visual maps that display real-time network performance information in a single glance, help you pinpoint issues quickly so you can understand their impact.
Unlimited map personalization
Choose the layout, background images, and icons that best reflect your unique IT environment. You’re the artist and Intermapper is the canvas… but unlike manual tools like Microsoft Visio, Intermapper maps are dynamic and update in real time.
Intermapper can notify you by the method of your choosing when devices exceed preset thresholds. Easily configure helpful sound, text, or email alerts, among many options.
Unlike many Windows-only tools, Intermapper can run on Mac, Linux, and Windows, giving you the flexibility you need.
Find and fix network issues immediately so users aren’t impacted with Automate for Intermapper.
An add-on called Intermapper Flows helps you troubleshoot bandwidth hogs and better understand the traffic flowing across your network.
How Does Intermapper Monitor SNMP?
Intermapper uses SNMP probes to query network devices for their management information base (MIB) variables. Those MIBS give you a greater range of SNMP monitoring. Out of the box, Intermapper comes with all kinds of general and vendor-specific probes, including:
- Basic OID
- High, Low, or Range Threshold
- Restricted Interface
- Single OID Viewer
- SNMP High PPS
- SNMP High Traffic
- String Comparison
- Table or Trap Viewer
- And more!
If you need a different SNMP probe, check out our user-contributed probes library. Customers constantly share custom SNMP probes and other types of probes for the whole Intermapper community to use.
You can also create your own custom SNMP probes. Here is a helpful article on how to create an SNMP probe.
Helpful SNMP Monitoring Resources
Three SNMP Versions
There are three versions of SNMP. Here's a quick summary of each version and how they differ:
The first version of SNMP was characterized by easy setup, 32-bit counters, and little security. The community string is sent in plaintext.
Version 2 added support for 64-bit counters and the Inform command.
Version 3, the most advanced version yet, provides additional user-based security features through authentication and encryption. If you haven’t yet upgraded to SNMPv3, it is more complex than the previous versions to setup, but it is highly recommended for its security benefits.
Seven SNMP Protocols
There are seven different SNMP protocol types. The four that are most commonly used by network administrators include GetRequest, GetNextRequest, Response, and Trap. Intermapper only requires read-only access to any of the “get” commands.
This is a manager-to-agent command requesting specified variables.
This is a manager-to-agent request to change specified variables.
This is a manager-to-agent command to deliver available variables returning a response with variable binding for the lexicographically next variable in the MIB.
Similar to the GetNextRequest, this manager-to-agent request asks for multiple iterations of GetNextRequest.
This is an agent-to-manager response bringing back variable bindings and acknowledgement for GetRequest, SetRequest, GetNextRequest, GetBulkRequest, and InformRequest.
This is a notification from agent to manager allowing the agent to send notification of important events using SNMP messages.
This is manager-to-manager notification.
Try SNMP Monitoring Free for 30 Days
Identify performance trends for SNMP-enabled devices and troubleshoot issues faster with Intermapper. Try it free for 30 days.