You read the headline correctly. Every Thursday throughout the month of March, our Principal Engineer and 6 year veteran, Chet Luther, will be hosting a 4-part webcast on developing ZenPacks. For those of you who know Chet, you already know how spectacular this webcast will be. For those of you who don't, I cannot stress the significance of getting to have Chet's time to learn about Zenoss, so seriously consider this opportunity.
There are two different ways to use Zenoss: 1) you can buy the commercial, "enterprise class" version, Zenoss Service Dynamics; 2) you can head over to the community wiki page to download the open source, "do-it-yourself" version, Zenoss Core. Why does this matter to you? In a single word: ZenPacks. Attend these webcasts and you'll learn to build ZenPacks that can be used on both the enterprise and open source versions of Zenoss. And by the way, being a ZenPack dev maven these days is a highly sought after ability to bring to the table.
ZenPacks are what make Zenoss so cool, both in the Core and Enterprise versions. ZenPacks allow you to take full advantage of the highly extensible framework of Zenoss. In short, it's a plug-in or extension to Zenoss. From our Wiki page:
ZenPacks add the ability to monitor new types of devices, but can also be used to add new capabilities to the software itself, add new reports, etc. The extensibility available via ZenPacks is a critical part of Zenoss, as datacenters have lots of different types of hardware and software (such as cloud services) that need to be monitored, and ZenPacks allow you to monitor everything!
There are three types of ZenPack that you should be familiar with also:
1) Community ZenPacks: These are Open Source ZenPacks that have been developed by our user community, and can be downloaded and installed for free. These ZenPacks are built using an auto-build system which makes .egg files available to you for download. Unless otherwise noted, a ZenPack in this directory is a community ZenPack.
2) Core ZenPacks: These are ZenPacks developed by Zenoss, Inc. which are distributed with Zenoss Core in the "Zenoss Core ZenPacks" RPM. Typically, these are all installed when Zenoss is set up. Our auto-deploy script installs these for you automatically. A Core ZenPack will have a special note on its page to let you know that it is a core ZenPack.
3) Commercial ZenPacks: These are ZenPacks developed by Zenoss, Inc. which are available in our commercial products. They typically include advanced functionality or specialized device support required by enterprise users. A Commercial ZenPack will have a special note on its page to let you know that it is a commercial ZenPack.
Learning to develop your own ZenPacks can be extremely beneficial to you, namely, to make your job easier. This is especially true if you have any homegrown apps that you want to monitor. Once you've created a ZenPack, and you want to share it with the world, you will want to list it in our ZenPack directory, which is incredibly easy to do too.
That's it! We hope you'll take advantage of this awesome opportunity. After each 2 hour session there will be an informal hour long Q&A on the official Zenoss IRC Channel. If you are interested in attending head over to Zenoss's Webex, and add the training to your calendar. Webex will automatically send you a reminder before each training session.