Article: How to monitor server availability?


Some network services need to be active constantly, day and night. Web-servers, email servers, routers, access points are examples of such. A company of any size can greatly depend on properly running network services, or it starts losing money.

But check each and every service manually is extremely boring and ineffective. For example, a web-server runs for months without a single failure, and then it crashes one night. How long will it take before you discover that manually?

Alchemy Eye is a highly customizable tool for monitoring server and network availability. It can check server availability as often as needed. If a problem is detected, the tool can notify you by email, instant messaging, SMS, or by other means.

Step 1: Download and install the program.

Download Alchemy Eye to a known location on your computer. Run the downloaded setup package and follow on-screen instructions to install it.

Step 2: Start the program. Add a monitor.

Launch Alchemy Eye. The main window appears. It is empty, as no monitors have been added yet.

Add new monitor

Click the leftmost button on the toolbar to add a new monitor. This will open the following window:

Set up monitor name and type

You can set name for your monitor to easily distinguish it between others (if you intend to monitor multiple servers/devices) (1). Below the name, there is a "Check interval" field that specifies how often the service should be checked. By default it offers us 3 minutes intervals, which is okay.

As next, specify the type of service that you want to monitor (2). We intend to keep an eye on our web-server, so we set TCP/IP here. Other possible types can be picked up in the dropdown list:

Network protocols and check types

Alchemy Eye supports virtually all known network services and methods of monitoring. Scroll down the list to see more, if you need.

Finally, you can specify an intermediate monitor here. This may be useful, if, for example, you need to monitor a server on the internet, and you access the internet through a number of intermediate devices. If one of the devices is down, Alchemy Eye may mistakenly report a server failure.

As you select a "check type" from the list (2), a new item is added in the list (3). Click it to set other options.

Monitored server settings

For a web-server, simply enter its address (either IP or domain name) (1) and its port (2). You can simply select predefined ports by clicking the '...' button on the right.

Finally, click "OK" to add the new monitor.

Step 3: Check server availability.

Our monitor will check server availability every three minutes. To check it right now, we select the monitor and click this button on the toolbar: Check server availability now

Server is up and running

Alchemy Eye reports that our server is up and running, no problems detected. Now we can minimize the program to tray and let it monitor our server constantly. However, it may be a good idea to set notifications, alarms, and other options first. This can be done by editing monitor's properties (see the list of actions on the screen shots from step 2).

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