The Distributed Nagios eXecutor (DNX) project was conceived (as are many great software tools) out of need. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints' Information and Communications Services (ICS) department runs over ten thousand monitoring checks on their information services and communications systems every 5 minutes, using the Nagios monitoring package.
As the ICS monitoring project was maturing, it quickly became apparent that the Church's monitoring needs were over-taxing the bandwidth capabilities of Nagios and Linux itself. While the Church's monitoring system is a reasonably fast Linux machine, and while Nagios itself is a great tool with a significant community behind it, Nagios was simply not designed to handle that sort of load.
Furthermore, the end is not really in sight, as far as the Church's monitoring needs are concerned. The LDS Church expects its monitoring requirements to increase sharply over the next several years, as its network infrastructure and online family history and data services grow.
DNX can be configured to farm out Nagios checks to an unlimited number of worker nodes, each capable of handling as many checks as a stand-alone Nagios system can handle. The only real limit is network bandwidth, which has been forseen to increase steadily over the next decade.
Why Open Source?
The Church began the DNX project as an open source software offering primarily to gain the help of others in the monitoring community who might also be interested in dramatically increasing Nagios's bandwidth. Another reason for using open source is that the Church is not driven by profit, but by internal data management needs. Think of the LDS Church's ICS department as a big IS&T department; the primary goal is to service internal customer needs, not to sell software.
So Who Are We?
The DNX software itself was originally written by Robert W. Ingraham, who still participates in the project as his schedule permits. Currently, the ICS monitoring department is comprised of a four member team:
Sys Admin and Developer
Web Services Engineer
You may contact any of the ICS monitoring team members by sending a message to either one of these mailing lists:
- <dnx-users at lists dot sourceforge dot net>
- <dnx-devel at lists dot sourceforge dot net>
We promise to respond to all reasonable inquiries.