Cloud Database Monitoring using SelectStar – Part II

In the last blog post, we started to look at SelectStar, the latest SaaS offering from Blue Medora.  This is a true heterogeneous monitoring solution for cloud databases, covering disparate vendors such as Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, IBM DB2; also open source SQL and NoSQL databases such as PostgreSQL, MongoDB , MySQL, MariaDB; and Big Data’s Hadoop and Cassandra , besides other cloud-managed databases such as Amazon Aurora, Amazon DynamoDB and MS SQL Azure. This means it caters to both on-premise as well as cloud databases, and more clouds are on the way.

SelectStar uses a lightweight “collector” that is installed behind your firewall. This collector gives you read-only access to the databases you wish to monitor.  As promised in the last blog post, we will now go through the steps of how you can install the collector on an on-premise system and see if you can effectively monitor a database on that system.

First, you need to sign up for a free trial account at  No credit card is required and there are no other set-up fees as per the site. You need to accept a standard EULA. However, you need to be aware that email accounts are not accepted for the trial account and you need to use some other email address, such as that of your company. The standard trial lasts for 14 days but you could always request the SelectStar team for an extension.

You immediately get an activation email.  Once you click on the link and your trial account is activated, you are granted “Owner” rights. This means you have full access to your own SelectStar “space”, and can add collectors and databases, or even invite new users – these can be invited as either Administrators or Members.

            For example, you can add your co-workers as administrators if you would want them to help you deploy the collectors on separate systems. Alternatively, you could add your co-workers as normal “members”, these have read-only access to your SelectStar space. Normal members are unable to add databases, alerts or other aspects for monitoring.

So you yourself are an "owner" with full administrator rights. When you login, the first screen you see has some helpful hints and commands about adding a new collector on Linux or Windows or Amazon EC2, a button for adding a new user, and so on. You can see this in the screenshot below. Note that the secret key has been blanked out for security reasons in the screenshot. And each activated account gets a different secret key since it will have its own isolated space in the SelectStar SaaS system.

 At this point, you can click on the requirements link to see if your on-premise system meets the requirements for the collector.  As can be seen in the page that opens, the operating systems supported are Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 or greater, CentOS 6 or greater, or Windows Server 2008 R2, 2012, or 2012 R2. A Java Runtime Environment 1.8 64-bit is required.  For the hardware specs, 2 CPU cores and 2 GB RAM are recommended, and 1 GB of storage space for installation and logs. Obviously, not a lot of overhead on the host system, but we can check the CPU utilization later.

We will run the installation on an Oracle Linux Server release 6.6 virtual machine, with 4 cores of an Intel processor and 13 GB of memory. Copy the “SELECTSTAR_SECRET_KEY=” line from the page above and run this command as root: (the secret key has been x’ed out for security reasons)

# SELECTSTAR_SECRET_KEY=xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx sh -c "$(curl -fsSl"
Checking prereqs
Minimum java version supported is 1.8.0.
Current java version is 1.6.0_35
Please upgrade to a newer version of java and re-run this script
script has finished

So obviously there is a Java version prerequisite we need to satisfy before we can proceed. We continue in the next blog post, which is here.


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