If your Loggly linux log monitoring skills could use a quick brush-up, or if you’re brand new to the task, walk through the tips below and you’ll likely be surprised at how a short review can boost your brain’s memory bank. Sometimes we all have a tendency to get lost in the weeds of detailed tasks and sub-categories of sub-categories. There’s high utility in returning to the basics of one of the industry’s time-honored operating systems and it’s logging parameters.

The first two steps of the review look at the importance of knowing the what and why of the chore, but the third step truly gets down to the nitty gritty of knowing exactly which files to examine. Finally, finish off with a short summary of finding the right tools for the job and knowing how to be a smart consumer when you set out to purchase retail addons and out of the box solutions.

What You’re Monitoring

It sounds overly simplistic, but in this particular environment, you absolutely must know what event files your monitoring. The four choices you have are app, event, service and system logs. Most people focus on one or two at a time when monitoring. If you do this right, you’ll be able to anticipate all kinds of problems and work on prevention rather than detection, which is always a smart way to go about it.

Why You’re Doing It

The “why” involves four key items that are like gold to any IT admin: underlying issues, security, error messages and server performance. Prevention is better than post detection. If you keep an eye on these four parameters, there won’t be much of a chance for anything to slip in without your knowledge. Of course, these four pieces of the puzzle are very large areas of concern and no one person would want the chore of being responsible for all of it, and should be spread out to a team.

Which Files to Focus On

There are thousands of items in your event logs and not enough time for anyone to examine all of them. That’s why you have to prioritize and decide early on what priority you’ll hone in on. Everyone will have their own favorites based on various sets of factors, each of which is unique to a particular organization’s structure, history and computer environment. The bottom line is to keep a running list of your targeted files within the platform and examine them regularly. Otherwise it’s easy to lose sight of what your short and long-term goals are.

Decide Which Tools

A capable tool that can help you monitor is worth it to the overall success of the business, so it’s important to become familiar with what’s out there, what the average prices are and which tools excel at different tasks. You’ll want to base your buying choices on much more than price, so don’t fall victim to either not putting enough budget towards, or the fallacy of more expensive means better. They’re just different sides of the same coin.

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