[mrtg] Re: [mrtg]instances

Larry Sheldon lsheldon at creighton.edu
Thu Mar 29 15:52:22 MEST 2001

> I may be taken for a newby (in fact i'm one! :-P ), but...
> What is the meaning and the goal of the instances we put at the end of
> the OIDs?

Well, I have been at this stuff for a while, but I am often taken to
be one who doesn't know very much about it, and I am probably about to
demonstrate why . . .

My understanding is that the SNMP data structures ("MIB"'s) are (huge)
nested tables where certain kinds of data are grouped together in sub-
tables indexed by something.

The value of the index for a particular group of stuff is the "instance

In many machines the instance number and an "interface number" used elsewhere
but the machines OS will be related, sometimes identical, so in many places
"instance number" and "interface number" mean the same thing.

But that will get you into trouble just often enough that I suggest you
think of them as different-if-sometimes-related things.

.                                                                       .
- L. F. (Larry) Sheldon, Jr.                                            -
. Unix Systems and Network Administration                               .
- Creighton University Computer Center-Old Gym                          -
. 2500 California Plaza                                                 .
- Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.A.  68178       Two identifying characteristics  -
. lsheldon at creighton.edu                  of System Administrators:     .
- 402 280-2254 (work)                Infallibility, and the ability to  -
. 402 681-4726 (cellular)               learn from their mistakes.      .
- 402 332-4622 (residence)                                              -
. http://www.creighton.edu/~lsheldon    Adapted from Stephen Pinker     .

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