Web Server Load Balancing with NGINX Plus

This is a guest post by our friends at Pandora FMS, and was originally posted on their blog.

NGINX manages large amounts of simultaneous connections with great performance. It’s being used successfully by a number of large‑scale businesses, including our customers here at Pandora FMS. So Pandora FMS has added NGINX Plus as an exciting new feature in the Pandora FMS Enterprise stable.

The decision was clear: NGINX is used in large environments, Pandora FMS monitors large environments… We imagine you get the picture, but in case you don’t, see the figure below.

Pandora FMS monitoring screen with NGINX Plus
Figure 1. Pandora FMS has integrated NGINX Plus monitoring

Bottom line, the team at Pandora has improved the existing plug‑in for NGINX Open Source to be compatible with NGINX Plus, allowing users to monitor a wide array of metrics from their advanced live activity feed. But, what does this imply?

Pandora FMS strives to work in perfect synchronization with NGINX. We want to capture and monitor as many parameters as users may need to gather from this service.

Monitor NGINX Plus Metrics with Pandora FMS Enterprise

The new NGINX Plus plug‑in for Pandora FMS Enterprise gathers data from the NGINX Plus status module, including:

  • Handled, dropped, and active connections
  • For every Server zone – I/O traffic, requests per second, and 2xx, 4xx, and 5xx response statuses
  • For every Cache – Status, hit ratio, and capacity
  • For every Upstream – Availability and I/O traffic
  • For every TCP/UDP Upstream and TCP/UDP Zone – Availability, I/O traffic, and connections per second

Setting up the NGINX Plus plug‑in is really a breeze; there is no better way to illustrate this than with a short tutorial video.

Click here to watch a short video on the Pandora FMS Plugin for NGINX Plus on how to monitor NGINX
Figure 2. This video introduces the Pandora FMS plug‑in for NGINX Plus

Why Pandora FMS and NGINX Plus Make the Perfect Couple

Pandora FMS and NGINX Plus work together smoothly and effectively. Pandora FMS enables monitoring of NGINX Plus simultaneously with the rest of your infrastructure (databases, backends, etc.), providing key APM metrics to achieve end‑to‑end visibility as well as root‑cause analysis.

Pandora FMS shows an overview of your infrastructure for how to monitor NGINX
Figure 3. Pandora FMS provides an overview of your infrastructure

Simultaneous monitoring of all “players” goes hand in hand with the visual real‑time dashboard integration that Pandora FMS provides for your environment, including your NGINX Plus parameters. This is not only useful, it’s also quite good looking.

NGINX Plus details from Pandora FMS on how to monitor NGINX
Figure 4. Pandora FMS also provides NGINX Plus details

The plug‑in can be adapted to measure all the metrics that NGINX Plus has, as well as custom metrics.

Pandora FMS custom metrics for how to monitor NGINX Plus
Figure 5. Pandora FMS adds custom metrics to NGINX Plus

The plug‑in integrates fully with the dynamic features in NGINX Plus. So, what does this imply for you?

  • Once you configure the plug‑in, it discovers new NGINX components automatically – upstreams, caches, server zones, etc.
  • On our roadmap is the ability to autoscale, taking advantage of the on‑the‑fly capabilities provided by NGINX Plus.

This plug‑in is only available for Pandora FMS Enterprise edition users, and is meant for NGINX Plus specifically. However, if you want to monitor NGINX Open Source with Pandora FMS Open Source edition, check out this video tutorial on how to install Pandora FMS Open Source.

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About The Author

Axel Amigo

About F5 NGINX

F5, Inc. is the company behind NGINX, the popular open source project. We offer a suite of technologies for developing and delivering modern applications. Together with F5, our combined solution bridges the gap between NetOps and DevOps, with multi-cloud application services that span from code to customer.

Learn more at or join the conversation by following @nginx on Twitter.