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Recommendations for Monitoring your XNAT Installation

As an XNAT installation gets more users and studies, a proper systems architecture and appropriate tuning can get the most out of your hardware. At the same time, monitoring the performance of your XNAT installation helps you be more responsive to your user base's needs. At our 2010 XNAT Conference, John Paulett presented some recommendations and lessons learned from our own installations.

Here is a summary of the tools we recommend for monitoring your systems.

Munin

Munin allows you to monitor the performance of your backbone systems -- PostgreSQL, Tomcat and Linux -- over time. Track memory usage, CPU usage, queries and requests, among other things. Example screenshots of Munin reports:
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Monit

Monit provides monitoring & management of active processes, and allows you to define criteria for emailing alerts and/or restarting. For example, you might define a criteria around CPU usage, or reaching memory thresholds, or connection failures.

Pingdom

Pingdom offers world-wide tests for site availability and response time, and offers SMS and email alerts when sites are unavailable. Example screenshots from Pingdom reports:
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Yourkit

YourKit is an excellent tool for analyzing a Java process's memory and CPU usage. We have been able to significantly improve XNAT's speed and hunt down memory leaks by profiling with YourKit.
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