Ep. 15: MKPs and Plugins in Checkmk

[0:00:00] Welcome back to the Checkmk channel. And in this episode, we're taking a look at MKPs and how you can use them to extend your Checkmk site.
[0:00:16] So what is an MKP? MKP stands for checkmk package and these contain extensions for Checkmk. Most often they contain check-plugins. But they could also be used for notification plugins, extensions to the user interface or even language packs.
[0:00:34] Now MKPs are the preferred format for when you create your own extensions. They make it easy to share your extension with other users or to deploy them in distributed environments.
[0:00:46] Now, of course, you don't need to create your own extensions you could also use the ones created by the Checkmk community and you can find these MKPs on the Checkmk exchange. So if there is something that you're looking for that is not part of Checkmk by default, you can look there and maybe you can find something. 
[0:01:04] So now let's do just that. So you can find the exchange on exchange.checkmk.com. And here you can search for packages using the search bar for example 'windows'.
[0:01:20] Or you could browse through the latest and most downloaded sections or even browse through the entire collection and using the view all plugins button.
[0:01:30] So let's do that. Now here you can see that you can sort the packages by date, rating, views and downloads and you can search for a package here as well. So let's search for language.
[0:01:47] Now, these are all the language packs of Checkmk that you can download and install into your Checkmk site. Let's pick the Dutch one.
[0:01:57] Here on the left you have some information about the author and the package. So the author, the website of the author, how often it has been viewed, how often it has been downloaded, when the first version was uploaded, when the last version was uploaded, how many versions there are, the rating and the amount of reviews. Now in the middle section, you have a link to all versions and the reviews. There is description of the package and you see the latest version of the package here.
[0:02:31] And you also see this note notification that this one is only working on Checkmk 2 (version 2.0) or higher.
[0:02:39] For each version, you can also see all the files that are part of this MKP and because this is a language pack it only contains two files. Now every version will always be reviewed by one of our developers, before it's published on the exchange.
[0:03:00] Now because this is a language pack you can actually contribute to these language banks and you can do that on translate.checkmk.com. I already have it open here in the second tab, so let's go there. Now this is the list of all languages that you can contribute to yourself.
[0:03:20] You will just have to create an account and you can start translating immediately. If your language is not part of this list you can easily request it on our forum: forum.checkmk.com.
[0:03:32] And there is a localization category or you can even send us an email at marketing@tribe29.com For now let's head back and download the package. So now that the package is downloaded, we're ready to install it in our checkmk site. So let's open it up.
[0:03:56] So we're back in our checkmk site, now to install it you go to setup and then search for extension packages.Here you would see all installed packages currently this list is empty because we have nothing installed now let's change that click on upload package, choose file to search the file we just downloaded. And now simply press upload and install.
[0:04:33] Once it is installed, it's not actually activated yet. So to do that we need to activate the two changes that we have. We have two changes because we are in a distributed setup.  
[0:04:46] Once you activate the changes in a distributed setup the package will automatically be pushed over to your remote site if you share the configuration. Now let's do that.
[0:05:03] If this package would have contained any check-plugins you would have to run a service discovery in order to actually discover these new services. Let's go back to the packages real quick.
[0:05:22] So now it's installed and activated if you click on this pencil here, you can see and edit these details of the package. So you can actually see the files again, the description.
[0:05:37] This is the same information as that you can see on the Checkmk exchange. So if you are a creator of an extension and you have a new version for example you added a new file then you can change this version number and simply save it.
[0:05:58] Now with this button, you can download the new version of the package and you could then for example upload it again to the exchange. So that the new version is also available to the community.
[0:06:09] Now let's see if this package actually works so to do that we go to user and edit profile and now there should be a new language. And as you can see there is a new language called Dutch.
[0:06:25] So let's save that and as you can see now the entire user interface language has been changed. Now you can also work with MKPs on the command line, so let's switch over to the command line.
[0:06:42] So you have to be logged in as the site user which we currently are so there is this command called 'mkp,' and as you can see it takes some it can take some arguments for example 'mkp list'.
[0:06:57] This will show us all packages that are currently installed. With 'mkp show' followed by the name of the package, you can show the details.
[0:07:14] So once again this is the same information as you would see on the exchange and when you click on the pencil in the package overview. And you can even remove the package if you would run mkp remove followed by the name (we forgot a space there). And now the package is removed.
[0:07:41] So that was it again for this episode. I hope it was helpful and if so please subscribe to our channel like the video. For now, until next time.

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