Probe Server Change [AU] and Addition [FI]

The following probe server will be changing IP addresses on 2021-02-24

Sydney, Australia (AU) – AU is changing from
139.99.130.48 / 2402:1f00:8100:230::10
to
112.213.38.162 / 2404:9400:2:0:216:3eff:fee1:bce0

We are also adding a new probe to the Europe region on 2021-02-24

Helsinki, Finland (FI) – FI
95.216.64.250 / 2a01:4f9:2b:105::2

Please adjust your firewalls appropriately if you whitelist so your checks do not fail because of the probe IP address changes.

An always current and updated list of all the IP addresses for our probe servers can be found in the FAQ, a text file, and via DNS query, probes.nodeping.com.

[UPDATE – 2021-02-24 12:29GMT-7] – IP change and probe addition complete.

DoH Monitoring and DoT Monitoring

NodePing can verify that your DNS over HTTPS (DoH) and DNS over TLS (DoT) services are available and replying with the expected records.

DoH/DoT was created to help secure DNS queries and responses over untrusted networks and is supported by most browsers and operating systems.

Our DoH/DoT check will ensure that your DNS over HTTPS (RFC 8484) or DNS over TLS (RFC 7858) servers are working correctly and if they’re not, we’ll send you notifications.

In accordance with the RFCs, our uptime monitoring for DoH uses the common DNS wire format via HTTPS GET or POST over port 443. Our uptime monitoring for DoT also uses DNS wire format over via TLS over port 853. You can include EDNS(0) OPT records in the queries as well as verify the query response. You can add custom HTTP headers (DoH-only) and sign your requests with your own TLS client certificates for authentication.

The DoH/DoT check can be found in the standard check type drop down menu in your NodePing account. If you don’t have a NodePing account yet, please sign up for our 15-day, free trial.

Probe Changes [NJ, TX, WA] and Removal [GA, RO]

The following probe servers will be removed on 2021-01-14:

Atlanta, Georgia (GA) – USA (107.150.22.26 / 2607:fcd0:aa80:2200::10)
Bucharest, Romania (RO) – RO (185.158.248.112 / 2a04:9dc0:0:4:185:158:248:112)

The following probe servers will be changing IP addresses on 2021-01-14

Seattle, Washington (WA) – USA (173.205.92.154 / 2607:fcd0:cd00:a00::10)
will change to
(107.161.26.107 / 2604:180:1:6e::83b5)

Dallas, Texas (TX) – USA (198.96.95.50 / 2607:fcd0:da80:4300::10)
will change to
(45.56.73.70 / 2600:3c00::f03c:92ff:feaa:d919)

Newark, New Jersey (NJ) – USA (23.226.135.34 /2607:fcd0:ccc0:1301::10)
will change to
(209.205.207.243 / 2a06:8640:198::2)

Please adjust your firewalls appropriately if you whitelist so your checks do not fail because of the probe IP address changes.

An always current and updated list of all the IP addresses for our probe servers can be found in the FAQ, a text file, and via DNS query, probes.nodeping.com.

[UPDATE – 2021-01-14 13:00GMT-7] – IP changes and probe removals complete.

Compact View for Status Reports

When we released our new status reporting recently one of the first requests was for a compact view of checks on the report.  People wanted a view that would put a list of checks statuses on the screen all at once.  So we’re happy to be releasing a more compact view of the list of checks on the report.

The new “compact” view can be turned on in the “Checks” section of the report configuration  The layout uses a table, so some of the features of the standard view (like setting the sort order) aren’t relevant to the table based view.  However, you can still pick what uptime metrics to show.  If you pick an uptime display that has more than four or five columns, you will likely want to adjust the display width of the report.  How to do that is discussed on our Report Styling page in the documentation.  

Our old status reporting showed seven days and thirty days of uptime, which wasn’t included in the first release of the new report.  In addition to the compact view, we’re also adding the seven+thirty uptime view.  It’s also available in the Checks section of the status report configuration, as well as in the Uptime section of the configuration for individual check status pages.

Both of these enhancements to the report were in direct response to feedback we got from customers on the new reporting.  There are more enhancements coming as well.  We listen to feedback, and base many of our decisions on future enhancements on what our customers are requesting.  So please let us know what is important to how you use our monitoring tools.

And if you don’t use NodePing yet, the best thing to do is get started with a free, 15-day trial.  

Probe Server Addition [AZ]

The following probe server will be added on 2020/11/18:

Phoenix, Arizona (AZ) – USA
(136.175.8.15 / 2605:8340:0:1::2)

Please adjust your firewalls appropriately if you whitelist so your checks do not fail because of the probe IP address changes.

An always current and updated list of all the IP addresses for our probe servers can be found in the FAQ, a text file, and via DNS query, probes.nodeping.com.

 

[UPDATE – 2020-11-18 12:51GMT-7] – IP addition complete.

Probe Server Change [UK] and Removal [OR]

The following probe server has been removed:

Hillsboro, Oregon (OR) – USA (147.135.38.178 / 2604:2dc0:200:b2::10)

The following probe server will be changing IP addresses and location on 2020-10-14:

Thames Valley, England (UK) – GB (109.169.10.173 / 2001:1b40:5000:2a:216:3eff:fed9:fd3c)
to
Coventry, England (UK) – GB (78.110.173.218 / 2a01:a500:2604:10::10)

Please adjust your firewalls appropriately if you whitelist so your checks do not fail because of the probe IP address changes.

An always current and updated list of all the IP addresses for our probe servers can be found in the FAQ, a text file, and via DNS query, probes.nodeping.com.

[UPDATE – 2020-10-14 11:07GMT-7] – IP change complete.

Status Reports Update

At NodePing, our emphasis has always been on solid reliability, and building the monitoring system that we would want to use. That means it does what it should, cost effectively, consistently and without fuss, and provides the variety of monitoring people need. We’ve never been the prettiest. We think we’re one of the best.

But even we agree that attractive status reporting is important. So we’re releasing a significant update to our status reporting that allows our customers to have both public and private status reporting that is rich, dynamic, informative, and detailed, all while hopefully being nice to look at.

All of the plan levels at NodePing have supported multiple public status reports for a long time. In addition to being prettier, the new report adds a ton of customization options that allow you to use the status reporting in a way that fits your particular need. That includes turning on and off each category of information that the report supports and customizing how it all looks.

Status ReportEvery check on NodePing now also has an individual check status page, which you can make public or keep private (the default). Private reports mean that people need a login to your account on NodePing to access the report. Of course, you can have unlimited logins for your account, and give users logins to subaccounts, which makes this really flexible as well.

The enhanced status reporting can show check properties, uptime, results (charted and listings of individual results), events, and custom notes. Each category of information can be shown or removed from the report, and all of them have options you can configure. All of that is designed to hopefully work the way you need it to, for your specific use case.

The new reporting is described more fully in our documentation, and all of the switches, toggles, and labels are described in help text in the settings panels of the reports. Give it a try and let us know what you think!

If you don’t have a NodePing account yet, now’s a good time to take advantage of our 15-day, free trial. Once you sign up and have some monitoring checks set up, go to Account Settings, then Reporting to add your first Status Report.

Using NodePing with Ansible

Ansible is a configuration management and application deployment tool that is designed to help automate IT. NodePing offers a module that allows our customers who use Ansible in their infrastructure to automate tasks such as managing checks and creating ad-hoc and scheduled maintenance with our maintenance feature. For example, you can include setting up monitoring in your Ansible playbook, so new servers or virtual machines are automatically added to your monitoring.  Or, if you have a playbook that automates maintenance, you can have Ansible set ad-hoc maintenance on your monitoring for the affected host before it runs the rest of the playbook.

 

Getting Started

To get started with the NodePing Ansible modules, you will have to download the modules and copy them to your Ansible modules directory. You may have to edit your ansible.cfg. The path is configured via the library variable and by default is /usr/share/my_modules/. You can download the zip file here with the Ansible modules and extract them to your computer. In the unzipped folder you should find two Python files: nodeping.py and nodeping_maintenance.py. These two files should be copied into your Ansible library (modules) folder. There are also a couple example playbooks that show you a snippet of using the nodeping and nodeping_maintenance modules.

The NodePing Ansible module depends on the nodeping-api library for Python. This can be installed using the pip package manager, like so:

# python2

pip install nodeping-api

# python3
pip3 install nodeping-api

# Alternate python3
python3 -m pip install nodeping-api

# If installed for the user
python3 -m pip install --user nodeping-api

Creating Checks

You can create checks with the NodePing module, and if you need to access any of the values from the result after creation, you can register the result and access it elsewhere in your playbook. Here is an example:


---
- hosts: test
  
  vars:
    nodeping_api_token: secret-token-here
    
  tasks:
    - name: Create a NodePing check for target host
      delegate_to: localhost
      nodeping:
        action: create
        checktype: PING
        target: "{{ ansible_default_ipv4.address }}"
        label: mytest ping
        enabled: False
        interval: 1
        token: "{{ nodeping_api_token }}"
        notifications:
        - group: My Contact Group
          notifydelay: 2
          notifyschedule: All the time
        - contact: 4QT82
          notifydelay: 0
          notifyschedule: All the time
      register: result

Note that the checktype is in all caps. This will be necessary when creating a check. Our API documentation provides a list of check types as well as parameters for creating the check. It is recommended that you delegate the task to localhost if you can. That way your deployment server is the only server that needs the Python library installed. If you wish to create your checks on the target server, be sure to install the nodeping-api package via the pip module. The returned value is registered to the variable result and stored as a dictionary, so you can access the values easily. In this next example, the check id is used to get the check contents from NodePing:


- name: Get a check, run from localhost
  delegate_to: localhost
  nodeping:
    action: get
    checkid: "{{ result.message._id }}"
    token: "{{ nodeping_api_token }}"

Here you can see we queried result.message._id of the result we registered earlier. This is an example of how you can use data returned from NodePing through the rest of your playbook for whatever your needs may be. You can also get check info by providing a label, but note that if you have many checks with the same label, it will grab only the first one.

 

Maintenance

The Maintenance functionality will let you disable a list of checks while you do work on your server. That way, you can do your maintenance work on your server without it affecting your uptime during planned operations. An example of using this could be running the nodeping_maintenance module to disable your checks. It will take about 30 seconds for the maintenance schedule to start once created. You will want to ensure services aren’t being stopped or servers rebooted while the changes propogate across our distributed service and make sure all of your checks are disabled. At that point you can take your services offline without affecting your uptime metrics. Once the set duration is complete, NodePing will automatically enable those checks again. Here you can see an example of creating an ad-hoc maintenance that lasts for 30 minutes.

tasks:
  - name: Create ad-hoc maintenance
    delegate_to: localhost
    nodeping_maintenance:
      token: "{{ nodeping_api_token }}"
      name: ad-hoc maintenance
      duration: 30
      scheduled: False
      checklist:
        - 201911191441YC6SJ-4S9OJ78G
        - 201911191441YC6SJ-XB5HUTG6

  - name: Pause a minute to ensure checks are disabled
    pause:
      seconds: 30

# ...do stuff

You can also set scheduled to True, and provide a cron-syntax schedule to create a recurring maintenance.

Life is Easier with Automation

Pairing your Ansible automation with NodePing monitoring is a great way to automate processes, making them both easier and increasing reliability and trust in your systems.  We hope this module and other tools for integrating NodePing into your infrastructure management will make life easier and help you get the job done. If you aren’t using NodePing yet, you can sign up for a free, 15-day trial and test out monitoring your services today and take advantage of integrating NodePing monitoring and maintenance in your Ansible playbooks.

Probe Server Change [AR]

The following probe server will be changing IP addresses on 2020-06-04:

Federal, Argentina (AR)

(190.210.176.48)
to
(190.104.217.135)

Please adjust your firewalls appropriately if you whitelist so your checks do not fail because of the probe IP address changes.

An always current and updated list of all the IP addresses for our probe servers can be found in the FAQ, a text file, and via DNS query, probes.nodeping.com.

[UPDATE – 2020-06-04 11:28GMT-7] – IP change complete.

On-demand Diagnostics API and from AGENT Checks

It isn’t always obvious what’s going on when a check fails and additional information about what our probes are seeing can be helpful for troubleshooting. The NodePing diagnostic tools allow you to run several utilities to get information about what our probes are seeing. Now we’ve brought that functionality to our AGENT checks as well as a new API endpoint.

Diagnostics from AGENTs

You can now connect your AGENT checks to our diagnostics servers to run our most useful tools: mtr, ping, traceroute, and dig. Use the instructions in the AGENT software to run the diagnostic client on your AGENT. Your AGENTs will appear in the ‘location’ dropdown of the Diagnostic Tools in NodePing.

Diagnostics API

On-demand diagnostics can now be requested via our REST API. Your integrations can request NodePing diagnostics from any of our probes as well as from your AGENTs with a simple HTTP request. Please see the diagnostics API documentation for details.

If you don’t have a NodePing account, you can sign up for a free, 15-day trial and experience the fast and accurate service NodePing provides.