vRealize Network Insight

Sending VMware vRealize Network Insight Notifications to Slack

The ability to notify on events and all searches is one of vRealize Network Insight’s best-kept secrets. Join me in this blog and let’s zoom in on those events and notifications and learn how to send them to Slack.

vRealize Network Insight is available for on-premises deployment or as a VMware Cloud Service called VMware Network Insight. The capabilities and steps I describe below apply both to the on-premises product as well as the SaaS service.

Events

There are currently 126 standard System Events in VMware vRealize Network Insight, ranging from health checks (reminders for things that we often forgot to configure) to operational issues (NSX Edges are down). Apart from infrastructure events, there are also 93 Platform Health Events which look after the health of Network Insight itself.

To make it easy and get notified on all events, there’s a mass editing functionality where you can easily enable notifications:

Mass Edit Notifications

Simply select the events that needs notifications (or use the select all) and click the Edit button. The next screen will give you the available options for the notifications:

Configure Notifications

Specify the email frequency (immediately or daily digest) and where to send the emails. Or, if you prefer to send SNMP traps to another system, select Enable SNMP Trap. These options depend on having a valid Mail Server and/or a valid SNMP Trap destination, make sure you have those in place before configuring the notifications.

User-Defined Events

If you would like to be notified on something other than the available standard events, there’s the option to define a User-Defined Event. Now, these are really powerful and can be created from any and all searches. Next to saving the search results to a pinboard, there’s the alarm bell that allows you to create a notification from the search. As an example, I’ll show a search query that lists all firewall rules (virtual and physical firewalls) that allow traffic coming from the internet.

Search - Click Notification

Click the alarm bell icon and you will get a popup to create a new notification and a few options:

Search - Create Notification

Here, you can mark the notification as a problem with a severity (so that it shows up in the “Open Problems” in the interface), choose between an instant notification or a daily digest and input the email address you’d like to send the notifications. Again, you can do this for all searches you can think of, so you can get very creative!

Slack

Now for the good part; let’s set this up so the notifications appear in your favorite Slack channel! If you came here based on the title, you probably already know what Slack is. Otherwise, a (very) brief summary would be that Slack is a collaboration tool which is central around chat messaging.

I wanted to do this for our internal demo lab, and it turns out that it’s extremely simple. While there is no native integration with Slack inside Network Insight, there’s an app for Slack called “Email“. From the Apps section of the Slack client, you can find the Email app and add it to your workspace or (if it’s already added) view its settings. After adding the app and then visiting the settings page, you have the ability to use the Add Configuration button to add an email to Slack integration.

Slack Add Configuration

After clicking the Add Configuration button, Slack will ask you about the channel you would like to use.

Slack Messages Destination

Then click Add Email Integration. The end result will be an auto-generated email address with Slack. You’ll also get this in your email inbox, as a reminder.

Slack Settings

All you have to do now is to return to your VMware vRealize Network Insight events and add this email address to the notification emails. After you’ve configured this, alerts will start rolling into your Slack channel. 🙂

Slack Messages

Let us know if you’re using this integration or are using another outlet for the Network Insight notifications!

If you haven’t already tried it, VMware Network Insight cloud service is available free for 30 days – use it for planning application security or migration and troubleshooting networking across your multi and hybrid cloud environments.

 

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