Using The New Notification System For Fun And Profit
Here is an overview of how to configure and use the new Notification system.
Configuration takes place in 5 xml files, users.xml, groups.xml,
notifications.xml, destinationPaths.xml and notificationCommands.xml. Use of
each is explained below.
notification - the act of contacting a user or group of users via some
notice - a user/command instance
destination path - a definition of what users or groups to contact, and when
to escalate if the page is not answered promptly
target - In destinationPaths.xml, a user or group to send a
notification to and the command to use to send that
escalation - similar to a target, but is delayed by a specified amount
path - a named list of targets and escalations
duty-schedule - Indicates when a user is on duty. Uses the first two
letters of each day, capitalizing the first and military
style timestamps. (MoWeFr800-1700, TuTh900-1800)
interval - The time to wait between notifying users of a group
specified in the target tag of destinationPaths.xml. The
time units are as follows:
ms - milliseconds
s - seconds
m - minutes
h - hours
d - days
delay - Specified in the same units as an interval, but indicates
the amount of time to wait before processing the targets of
an escalation, as specified in destinationPaths.xml.
QUICK START GUIDE
1) Make sure there is at least one command listed in
notificationCommands.xml. If there aren't any copy the xml listed below
under the explanation for notificationCommands.xml.
2) Enter at least one user in the users.xml. This can be done via the admin
interface of the Web UI. If you want to send to a group then make an
entry in groups.xml and add all desired users to the group.
3) Enter a <contact> for each user that will be contacted, with a type
attribute that corresponds to a command listed in
notificationCommands.xml. Make sure the info attribute contains the
correct information to contact the user via the command, i.e. if the
"email" command is being used the set the info attribute to the user's
email address. This can be done via the admin interface of the Web UI.
4) Set up a destination path in destinationPaths.xml to indicate what user or
group to contact. Set the command attribute to the type attribute from
notificationCommands.xml of the command you want to use. If sending to a
group set the desired interval between contacting group members.
5) Enter a UEI/Destination Path mapping in notifications.xml if there are
none listed. Typically the event
notified on. If you want to not notify based on devices enter the
relevant rule (see the README.filters for how to write a rule). Enter the
destination path to use. Enter a text message to send. This is applicable
even if a numeric page is being sent, the text message will still be
entered in the database. Enter a subject if desired for an email message.
Enter a numerical message if needed.
6) Start the Notifd service.
7) Make sure that the status of notifications is set to on. This can be done
in the Web UI via the admin page.
8) Wait for a notice. If you think that a notice should have been delivered
and one hasn't, double check the configuration and then check the
notifd.log file (usually in /var/log/opennms) for any apparent errors.
CONFIG FILE EXPLAINATIONS
This file holds the notification information for all users in the system. In
order for a user to actually receive a notice, there must be contact
information listed in this config file (All notices will still be logged to
the database, so if the information is missing or incorrect the database still
has record of the notice).
A simple contact for a user is as follows:
<contact type="email" info="firstname.lastname@example.org"/>
The "type" attribute must match up to a type of command in the
notificationCommands.xml (see below). In this example, the type is "email",
thus the "email" command will be used to send the notice to the user. The
"info" attribute will hold whatever information is needed to contact the user
via the command that appears in "type", in this case its the email address.
If a page was being sent the "info" attribute will probably hold the pin #.
The "serviceProvider" attribute is optional, and can be used to indicate the
service provider of the media being used for the notice.
The <duty-schedule> tag indicates when this user is "on duty" and able to
receive notifications. A notice will not be sent to this user if when the
notice command is being run the user is listed as "off-duty". If no duty
schedules are listed for a user then the user is assumed to be "on duty" all
the time. A user can have more than one duty-schedule listed and they may
This file holds a list of users associated with a group name. If Notifd is
told to contact a group of users it will contact each of the users from the
group in the order that they are listed.
The notifications.xml file contains the following information
uei: an event uei
rule: a constraining filter that will try to match the
interface the event concerns. If the interface falls in
the domain of the rule the notice will be sent.
destinationPath: who to contact and how to escalate (see
parameters: information that needs to be sent via each notice to each
user expanded from the destination path. This must
include the -tm parameter indicating what to tell the
user about the notice.
When an event is found this file is searched to see if an entry exists for the
uei, if there is one then a notification will be started. The text of the
message being sent is specified in this file as a parameter. Any other
information that needs to be included is also specified as a parameter. Also,
the nodeid, interface, and service from the event are checked against the
rule. If the interface is included in the result set of the rule the
notification will be sent. Each notification is named so that it can be
referenced from the Web UI for configuration. An single event uei may be
associated with many notifications, but the first notification found that
matches the rule will be used.
This file defines how and when each user is contacted. It consists of three
definitions, paths, targets and escalations. A path is a named list of
targets and escalations. A target consists of a user or group to contact, the
command to use to contact the user or group, and in the case of a group the
amount of time to wait between contacting the members of the group can be
specified. If no interval is specified then all members of the group will be
contacted at the same time. The command is specified via a name that is used
to search the <lookup> entries of a notification command (see
notificationCommands.xml below). More than one target can be specified, each
target will start at the same time. An escalation contains targets, but also
specifies to wait a given amount of time prior to starting its targets. Each
target listed in an escalation will be started at the same time, after the
specified delay has passed.
This file contains the command line calls to the programs and scripts to
actually send the notice to the users. Each command is specified along with
the arguments that need to be sent, along with directives as to what
information needs to be pulled from the notification process. The <name> tag
indicates the command line call that will be made. The <lookup> tags indicate
how the destinationPath command attribute identifies what command to use. The
<argument> tags specify the arguments that need to be passed to the command.
Each argument can specify a <switch> and <substitution>. The <switch>
indicates that information needs to be gathered from the notification process.
The presence of a <substitution> tag will cause the substitution string to be
placed into the command line before a switch. If only the substitution or
switch is specified then only that will appear in the command line. If the
streamed attribute of an argument is set to "true" then the information
requested by the <switch> tag will be sent to the command line via an input
stream. The default on all arguments for this attribute is "false".
Below is an example for sending emails via the mail command:
<comment>for sending email notifications</comment>