The following Q&A's came from the Creating InterMapper Probes - Part Two presentation on 12 February 2014. Here are several information sources that can expand your understanding of how to create InterMapper Probes:

Recording from Part Two of the webinar ›
Recording from Part One of the webinar ›
Questions and Answers from Part One of the webinar ›
Questions and Answers from Part Two of the webinar
- See below

If you have further questions, please contact [email protected].


Q: Have you ever tried bazaar for version control with the probes?

A: I have not. I recommend git, since it is well developed, it has great tools (for example, SourceTree and, its momentum in the developer world increases, and it's used to maintain the Linux kernel source.

That said, Bazaar is another powerful distributed version control system (dvcs) that is also widely used - Ubuntu is maintained using Bazaar. If you're already using/comfortable with Bazaar, I wouldn't expect a problem with InterMapper, which would probably ignore the .bzr meta-data file(s), just as it ignores the .git and .hg files from git/hg.


Q: Could you show how to convert the TimeStamp in your trap probe to a viewer friendly format?

A: The $TimeStamp variable that's automatically created by a SNMP-Trap probe is expressed in ticks (1/100ths of a second) since the equipment started. It's not a particularly useful measurement - if the trap arrived three and a half days after the box started up... what does that mean?

If you want to create a variable that's set to the time the trap arrived, then you can use the strftime() function, for example:

rightNow, strftime("%c"), CALCULATION, ""

The line above in the section will set the variable $rightNow to a string with this format" "Wed Feb 12 18:54:45 2014". See the Developer Guide for alternatives to the %c format string.

Q: How do you get rid of old/renamed probes that are not in use anymore?

A: There is no automatic way to do this. The best way would be to remove the file(s) from the InterMapper Settings : Probes folder, then Reload Probes ( Ctl-Shift-R/Cmd-Shift-R )


Q: I added an OID to a probe and it is displaying the results but the number is not clickable (underlined). How do I make the number chartable (Clickable)??"

A: If a number is displayed in the Status Window but isn't underlined, you won't be able to click it to create a strip chart. But you can use the ${chartable:format:expression} macro to do this. This macro takes two arguments:

  • the format, either #.## to indicate the number of digits to display to the right of the decimal point, or a full-blown sprintf %f format
  • the expression to display.

For example, these two macros are equivalent:

${chartable: #.## : $variable1} 
${chartable: "%5.2f" : $variable1}

Note: there are two similar macros: ${scalable10: ... } and ${scalable2: ... } that are useful for scaling values to powers of 10 or 2. See the Developer Guide for each of these macros.


Q: How about an ""real-world lesson""?  Take an real device and build a probe from start to finish. 

A: This is an interesting idea for a future webinar. In the meantime, I suggest you review the probes I used for the webinars, they illustrate several real-world solutions.

  • The SNMP Traffic-Utilization probe shows how to create parameters and compare retrieved values to those thresholds
  • The Parameter Test probe shows how to create different kinds of
  • The MIB Viewer probe shows the result of using the MIB Viewer probe web page

You could also start with a vendor's MIB, and paste it into the MIB Viewer page to get a probe file. Copy the text from the blue background and paste it into a text file. Save it, and import it into InterMapper. (Be sure that you've imported the MIB beforehand.)

You now have an InterMapper probe that you can edit. Add a device to a map, and Set Probe... to that file. Open the Status Window to see what it shows. Now you can begin to exercise your judgement: 

  •  Open the file in your text editor and start removing variables from the Status window that aren't interesting. 
  • Create some parameters that you can use for thresholds
  • Set up a section that compares the variables to the parameters. 


Q: Do you have a well-formed probe template that I can use as a basis for my probes?

A: The MIB Viewer probe provides a base probe that includes all the variables defined by a particular MIB. It also includes all the required or optional sections that you might need. You can save the text into a text file and then edit it down to make a useful probe.


Q: Have you had any requests to setup a link to CA Service Desk in order to generate tickets for Alerts generated in Intermapper?

A: InterMapper doesn't have a direct capability to do this. However, many customers find that a useful method is to create an e-mail notifier that InterMapper sends to create a ticket/issue in the service desk program.

Q: Can you please cover SNMP V3 probes with in-depth information about SNMPv3 permissions credentials? Is the snmp v3 on the device and InterMapper the same...? What about SHA and other security strings...

A: SNMPv1 and SNMPv2 designers were concerned with retrieving valuable management information, and decided not to worry that the requests were sent with the community string and the responses "in the clear". SNMPv3's major change was to provide a framework for encrypting both the requests and the responses to keep the data private.

SNMPv1 and SNMPv2 work well for getting management information and status into InterMapper. You should consider SNMPv3 if confining all the network management traffic to "management VLANs" is not sufficient.

It is beyond the scope of this webinar to describe the full details of SNMPv3 security, but suffice it to say that InterMapper provides the ability to set the SNMP Authentication and Privacy methods as well as the User Name. You set them by choosing the SNMPv3 choice in the dropdown in the Set Probe... window.  There is more information in the InterMapper User Guide.