One of the Zabbix customers is a government-owned public limited company that builds, owns, maintains, and upgrades the railway network in a European country, makes its capacity available to railway operator companies, and handles train traffic control. As one of the largest companies in their field, the customer employs over 9,000 people and manages 3,602 kilometers of rail lines.

The challenge

The railway company needed a monitoring solution that was flexible enough to manage not only infrastructure, but also OS level metrics, data centers, service and application states, and the availability of railway infrastructure components.

The solution

To begin with, Zabbix agents are deployed on railway station screens and broadcasting systems. This is possible because under the hood these pieces of hardware they run Debian OS, which means they can be monitored on the OS level by Zabbix agents right out of the box with our official templates.

This can be very easily automated together with low level discovery, autoregistration, or network discovery. Devices can be pinged from Zabbix proxies or Zabbix servers to check if they are available. If they are unavailable, Zabbix sends a notification, after which an engineer either restores the network connectivity or replaces the hardware.

In addition, the customer also uses Zabbix to retrieve and monitor data collected from ActiveMQ. This is where a combination of custom bash scripts and Zabbix sender is used, so the required data (also related to the railway infrastructure and data centre, hardware, and software) is retrieved from ActiveMQ via Bash script, then forwarded to Zabbix sender via a wrapper script, sent to the Zabbix server or proxy, stored and analyzed in Zabbix, and acted upon if required.

The results

The customer found that they could get the most out of Zabbix by integrating it with a third-party ticketing system they were already using. The integration itself is simple – when Zabbix generates a problem, the Zabbix API is then used to retrieve the problems related to a particular set of triggers that need to be forwarded to this third-party system.

These alerts are then forwarded via API to whatever system they require – Zabbix has a variety of integrations available right out-of-the-box using web hooks, including Slack, JIRA, Microsoft Teams, and many others. Messengers can also be used with Zabbix, but Infrabel has opted to use Zabbix API for their custom ticketing solution.

In conclusion

This case is the perfect example of how the flexibility of Zabbix allows it to adapt to any industry or need. The possibility to use Zabbix API, web hooks, or a combination of both was a game-changer for them – just as it could be for any customer in any industry.

You can learn more about what we can do for customers across a variety of industries by visiting our website or requesting a demo.

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