There are many commercial and open source solution out there to graph your network utilization and in this article I am going to show you how to use Cacti the open source RRDTool-based graphing solution. Cacti is freely available at http://www.cacti.net and comes preloaded with a few Host and Graph Templates. If a template for the device you are trying to set up is not available by default you can download contributed cacti host and graph templates at http://docs.cacti.net/templates and import those to your cacti installation.
The installation and configuration for Cacti is on Ubuntu very simple. Let’s go over the installation procedure. First I recommend that you always update your apt-get repository with
sudo apt-get update
and then you can go ahead and install the latest version available from the repository with
sudo apt-get install cacti cacti-spine
accept all dependencies and the installation will start. During the installation the installer probably ask you a few questions depending on your current system setup but on a fresh install it most likely will ask your if you like to install MySQL and for a SQL Root user password. Further more it will also ask you if you like to use db-config to setup the cacti SQL Database and it will also ask for a password again. The next step it will ask you if you like to configure the installation for a version of apache web server. I recommend to use Apache2 unless you know what you are doing.
Now the installation should be done and the next step of the configuration is web based. Start you preferred web browser and browse to http://yourserver/cacti and you will see a disclaimer if your installation worked as planned, click next to start the web based configuration. Read the information displayed on those pages and make sure that there are now errors and click on finish at the end. If you run into errors try to solve those and re-run the steps until everything is the way it suppose to be.
Now you are done and you can browse to your Cacti website again and this time it should ask to to login. Use admin for the user name and password. The Cacti website now forces you to change your admin password for the website. Enter a desired password. Now there are two things that needs to be checked that they are correct. On the left pane click on settings and in the right pane click on the tab Paths. Make sure that all paths are green and it states that the file is found. Click on the Poller tab and change the poller from cmd.php to spine and scroll all the way to the bottom and click on save. Now you are done and can start adding devices and graphs.
Watch the video below to see the entire installation, configuration and adding devices and graphs. If you like the video don’t forget to rate it and leave a comment if you like.
Thanks for reading and enjoy the video.