IT speciallists... Is there something which auto-texts when things go bang?

Is there a system which sends an automatic sms text message to a supplied list of numbers when a computer server triggers an alarm or fails or something like that?

There are dozens of ways to do this. You pay thousands of dollars for expensive monitoring software or you can write your own shell scripts for free. This kind of functionality is usually more complicated than you expect… you think to yourself “I want to get X message when Y happens” but pretty soon it’s “unless A, B, and C happen, and messages go to Mr. Z only from 8 to 5 except on Jewish holidays.”

If you aren’t afraid to try rolling your own, here’s an open-source solution called “Simple Event Correlator”. If you’re willing to write just a bit of code, you can get a lot of flexibility out of the product for basically no cost other than the time you put into it.

Yes, there are lots of them. Did you have something specific in mind?

I’ve even written a couple trivial ones. It’s as simple as having a cronjob monitor some vital process and send an email to an SMS gateway when it goes down.

I have to wear a text pager 24 hours a day that receives auto-generated text alerts whenever there are network alarms. I received one a few hours ago:

I also get network traps in my pager, issued by the switch processor cards via SNMP. I can call into our network center and request a special filter string be entered into the trap servers if I need to watch something in particular.

So, yes it can be done. But I’m on the receiving end of the messages so I don’t know the mechanism behind it.

WhatsUp Gold( Ipswitch)
ASG Sentry (ASG)
HP OpenView (HP)
Tivoli (IBM)

There are products from Cisco, BMC, CA and many others (the names of which don’t spring to mind at the moment) that are much the same. They range in price from free (as noted above) to hundreds of thousands of dollars. Mostly they use SNMP, ping, and other protocols to get information about some or all the devices (computers, routers, printers, etc.) on your network. They all support various types of notification.