Exporting SNMP metrics to Prometheus

29 Oct 2023 14:31

My DS416play keeps falling off the network, requiring a hard reset. I wondered whether it was possible to monitor it somehow. It turns out that it responds to SNMP queries, so here’s my attempt to export all of that into Grafana.

The plan:

  1. Run prom/snmp-exporter in my K3s cluster.
  2. Get it talking to the DS416 (and to the DS923+).
  3. Build some VictoriaMetrics scrapers.
  4. Pretty graphs.

One possible problem here is that SNMP is kinda complicated (you can tell because it has “simple” in the name), and I have no idea what I’m doing.


Here’s the deployment file:

apiVersion: apps/v1
kind: Deployment
    app.kubernetes.io/name: snmp-exporter
  name: snmp-exporter
  namespace: monitoring-system
  replicas: 1
      app.kubernetes.io/name: snmp-exporter
        app.kubernetes.io/name: snmp-exporter
        - name: snmp-exporter
          image: prom/snmp-exporter:v0.24.1
            - containerPort: 9116

Here’s the service:

apiVersion: v1
kind: Service
  name: snmp-exporter
  namespace: monitoring-system
    app.kubernetes.io/name: snmp-exporter
  type: ClusterIP
    - name: snmp-exporter
      port: 9116
      targetPort: 9116

It’s a ClusterIP service because I want it to be accessible from VictoriaMetrics inside the same cluster, but it doesn’t need to be accessible externally.

A quick kubectl apply -f deployment.yaml -f service.yaml and the pod is running.

Using kubectl port-forward -n monitoring-system services/snmp-exporter 9116:9116 and browsing to http://localhost:9116/ shows that it seems to be vaguely working.

Enabling SNMP service on the Diskstation

On the Synology Diskstation, go to Control Panel / Terminal & SNMP. On the SNMP tab, enable the SNMPv3 service. It needs a username and password, so generate something using your password manager and stick that in here. I also enabled SNMP privacy.

My DS416play has the firewall disabled, so there’s nothing to do here.

Configuring snmp.yml

The default snmp.yml file for snmp-exporter has all kinds of non-Synology-related stuff in it. We’ll fix that later. More importantly, it doesn’t contain the username and password we chose above, so we’ll need to fix that.

mkdir -p etc/snmp_exporter/
kubectl --namespace monitoring-system exec -it deployments/snmp-exporter -- \
    cat /etc/snmp_exporter/snmp.yml > etc/snmp_exporter/snmp.yml

Edit the top of the file to look like this (use the username and password from earlier):

    security_level: authPriv
    auth_protocol: MD5
    username: snmp-exporter
    password: password123
    priv_protocol: DES
    priv_password: password123
    version: 3
# ...etc.

I initially tried to use a ConfigMap with kustomize, but the file is just too large. Instead, I’m going to use another container:

FROM docker.io/prom/snmp-exporter:v0.24.1
COPY /etc/snmp_exporter/snmp.yml /etc/snmp_exporter/snmp.yml
podman build . -t docker.k3s.differentpla.net/snmp-exporter:v0.24.1-differentpla-net
podman push docker.k3s.differentpla.net/snmp-exporter:v0.24.1-differentpla-net

Then we need to edit the deployment YAML to use that image. Ideally we’d put the username and password in a secret, but I haven’t figured out how to do that yet. It might be possible to do it with a startup script, since we’re using a custom container image.

Try it out

With the new configuration and container, and with the port-forward, I can browse to http://localhost:9116/, and enter the following:

  • Target: the IP address of my DS416
  • Auth: snmpv3
  • Module: if_mib

I had to use the IP address, because the default Pod DNS doesn’t get on with my home network. snmpv3 comes from the new section in snmp.yml, and if_mib is the default.

Pressing the “Submit” button results in a bunch of Prometheus metrics:

# HELP ifAdminStatus The desired state of the interface -
# TYPE ifAdminStatus gauge
ifAdminStatus{ifAlias="",ifDescr="eth0",ifIndex="3",ifName="eth0"} 1
ifAdminStatus{ifAlias="",ifDescr="eth1",ifIndex="4",ifName="eth1"} 1
ifAdminStatus{ifAlias="",ifDescr="lo",ifIndex="1",ifName="lo"} 1

None of these are Diskstation-specific. That’s a topic for a later blog post and probably involves MIB files.