Install EPops agent on AIX System

Recently I was approached by my customer where they wanted to monitor their existing AIX server via vROps. Since vROps claims to monitor any environment as long as it is supported within the matrix so I asked customer about their end goal as what are they looking to monitor from their AIX platform. The outcome of the discussion was they have their database running on AIX platform so they wanted to use vROps monitoring to get notified if there are any alerts on the system from operating system perspective. Also they were looking if they can get notified if any of the critical service on these system goes down.

This level of granular monitoring can be achieved via Endpoint Operations Management Agent (aka EPops). There are many variants of EPops agent for various OS flavor but installation on Windows or Linux platform is pretty straight forward and doesn’t cause much of the effort. However while configuring it on AIX system it is little tricky and there are very little knowledge base articles available on internet. So I thought of writing this article only for AIX system.

What is EPops:

 Endpoint Operations Management Agent or EPops agent is a JAVA based deamon which is installed on guest operating system (Windows, Linux, Solaris, AIX etc) and does application level monitoring (Active Directory, Apache, SQL Server, Tomcat etc….) to present this data on vROps server.

How is it different from VMware Tools:

The next question which comes into mind is – if we have VMware tools which are installed on virtual machine guest operating system and then why should we install additional demon on VM?

The answer is simple VMware tools is a utility which basically improves performance of guest operating system and makes management easy for that virtual machine. However it doesn’t benefit in collecting vm metrics data from guest OS standpoint, so the information available to the admin is limited to hypervisor level. Whereas EPops agents collects all that information and sends it to vROps.

In simple words vCenter or vROps will not have any visibility of a service, process or any custom checks for a virtual machine unless EPops agents are installed on that vm

Pre-requisites for installing EPops agent on AIX:

  1. Download End Point Operations Linux Agent – No JRE from VMware vRealize Operations Manager page
  2. Download IBM un-restricted SDK JCE policy from IBM download page using IBM credentials

Configuring JAVA: AIX uses IBM version of JAVA so first we need to setup JAVA environment

  1. To setup JAVA under /etc/profile please follow use below mentioned commands:
  2. HQ_JAVA_HOME=/usr/java7_64/jre
    export HQ_JAVA_HOMEPATH=$HQ_JAVA_HOME/bin:$PATH
    export PATHTo verify the changes made use echo command as below and it should return the environment variable set in above step

    # echo $HQ_JAVA_HOME
    /usr/java7_64/jre                                                                                                                            # which java
    /usr/java7_64/jre/bin/java

  3. Extract the unrestricted.zip folder downloaded from above step#2 (pre-requisites) and copy the files local_policy.jar & US_export_policy.jar to location /usr/java7_64/jre/lib/security This step is required otherwise you may encounter the problem where epops installation throws an error as it doesn’t support TLS_RSA_WITH_AES-256_CBC_SHA encryption

epops_error_01

Installing EPops on AIX:

  1. Using Filezilla or WinSCP copy the EPops agent folder in AIX /tmp directory vRealize-Endpoint-Operations-Management-Agent-noJRE-6.3.0-4241597.tar.gz
  2. gunzip -d vRealize-Endpoint-Operations-Management-Agent-noJRE-6.3.0-4241597.tar.gz
  3. tar -zxvf vRealize-Endpoint-Operations-Management-Agent-noJRE-6.3.0-4241597.tar
  4. cd /tmp/epops-agent/bin
  5. ./epops-agent.sh start
  6. Provide vROps Hostname or IP address during configurations- It require port 443 to be open bi-direction between AIX server and vROps. If there are multi-node vROps deployment then make sure the port is bi-direction open on all nodes
  7. Provide vROps credentials (admin or user having administrative privileges)

 

If everything goes well till here then EPops agent installation should be successful on AIX system and the agent will start reporting to vROps server.

I hope it helps, I will be discussing how to setup monitoring for AIX server on vROps in my next blog.. till then Happy Reading 🙂

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