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Zeppelin Systems Relies on Centreon to Evolve Monitoring at the Speed of Digital Business

Blog Zeppelin Systems Relies on Centreon to Evolve Monitoring at the Speed of Digital Business

Centreon has been a smart choice for us from day 1 in our monitoring. We’ve been able to leverage the platform to match our needs over a long period of time, even as our company grew globally and our technological stack evolved-first doing things on our own, then tapping the expertise of a Centreon expert, Cancom, and now furthering the evolution of our monitoring platform through adopting the Centreon IT Edition. Centreon has been meeting our needs for over a decade.

Dierk Uhr, Director, IT & Organization Department, Zeppelin Systems

The project in a nutshell

Business objective: ensure constant access to business applications for 1400 employees.

  • Support 24-7 operations unfolding across the globe.
  • Safeguard production capabilities in a highly digitized manufacturing environment.

ITOM objectives: build up monitoring capabilities without relinquishing open source flexibility.

  • Scale up a beloved Centreon Open Source platform.
  • Seamlessly monitor on-premises and cloud environments.
  • Beef up on automation capabilities.
  • Enable more collaboration on a centralized platform with remote teams.
  • Ensure the continuous evolution of monitoring capabilities to match business growth.

The Centreon solution

  • Customized Centreon Open Source platform evolving into the Centreon IT Edition.

Main benefits

  • Acceleration: With more of the IT environment monitored through a single platform, it’s faster to find the source of issues.
  • Accurate monitoring: The full diversity of IT equipment can be monitored, including cloud assets.
  • Seamless configuration:  Adding new subsidiaries or new hosts to monitor is much faster. Misconfiguration risks are eliminated thanks to automatic discovery and configuration.
  • Single source of truth: One central location to check the health of IT systems that span the globe and multiple IT teams.
  • Set up and forget: The team is only notified when their attention is required, keeping their focus on managing software and services.


Zeppelin Systems specializes in the design, construction, and technological upgrading of industrial plants for storing, conveying, mixing, dosing, and weighing high-quality bulk materials and raw materials. With around 1,400 employees worldwide, Zeppelin Systems provides plant engineering solutions for customers in the plastics, chemicals, rubber, tire, and food industry on a daily basis. Zeppelin Systems is part of the Zeppelin Group with more than 10,000 employees worldwide.

Zeppelin Systems started with the free Centreon Open Source platform after noticing at a service provider. They implemented and grew with this platform for many years. When their monitoring needs became more complex, they called on a local Centreon expert consultant, Cancom (ex. S&L) to evolve their original platform into a best-practice open source platform.

With the growth of their digital business, the company is now transitioning to a commercial offering, the Centreon IT Edition, retaining the same flexibility and reliability they’ve always enjoyed while gaining important new capabilities such as Auto Discovery, access to monitoring Connectors (formerly known as Plugin Packs), automatic configuration, and technical support, so they can enjoy complete, accurate monitoring while focusing on managing value-adding software and services. 

The full story

Zeppelin Group is a dynamic and constantly growing company that offers solutions for the construction industry, drive and energy systems, engineering and plant engineering. The Group provides expertise in a number of areas, from the distribution and service of construction, mining, forestry and agricultural machinery, through rental and project solutions for the construction sector and industry as a whole, to drive and energy systems as well as engineering and plant engineering and enhances its offering with digital capabilities in all areas.

Zeppelin Plant Engineering (Zeppelin Systems) is one of five strategic business units of the Zeppelin Group and provides as Plant Engineering Solution Expert components and systems for the handling of high-quality bulk materials. Headquartered in Friedrichshafen, on the north shore of Lake Constance, Germany, the company also enjoys a strong global presence.

IT Monitoring that keeps scaling

For this innovation-driven company, digitalization is a continuous process. IT is constantly evolving and has become highly complex and integrated. IT monitoring is seen as a critical aspect of business continuity and so, Zeppelin Systems is constantly building IT monitoring capabilities while seeking ways to accelerate and streamline processes. The team needs to achieve more of the growing responsibilities that entails managing a complex digital environment and focus less time on managing IT monitoring.

Zeppelin Systems, the Plant Engineering business unit, is a long-time Centreon user and aficionado. The company has been using Centreon open source for nearly a decade. More recently, the IT team has benefited from the expert advice of Cancom (previously S&L), a Centreon partner in Germany, to further the evolution of the initial Centreon Open Source platform, making it more resilient and scalable as it now encompasses 8 locations in Germany, and 9 more across the globe, covering about 500 devices and 4000 services. Today, with the company’s expansion in full swing, with many more subsidiaries –and equipment to monitor—are expected to be integrated in the coming years. To better face an accelerating pace of change, Zeppelin Systems is transitioning to the Centreon IT Edition. Through this most recent evolution of their IT monitoring capabilities, they’ll gain powerful means to simplify and automate the full IT environment’s monitoring, leveraging the solution’s ready-to-use connectors and automation features.

Centreon has been a savvy choice for us from day 1 in our monitoring. We’ve been able to leverage the platform to match our needs over a long period of time, even as our company grew globally and our technological stack evolved—first doing things on our own, then tapping the expertise of a Centreon expert, Cancom, and now furthering the evolution of our monitoring platform through adopting the Centreon IT Edition. Centreon has been meeting our needs every step of the way, for over a decade.” Dierk Uhr, Director, IT & Organization Department, Zeppelin Systems

Why is monitoring important?

At Zeppelin Systems, everything depends on IT, and so IT monitoring is a crucial part of strategies to ensure business continuity. As Dierk explains:

We have a clean desk policy at Zeppelin Systems. Everything is digitized, we’re not using paper at all. Our IT systems are therefore essential for the work of hundreds of people driving our business across the globeAlso, we have affiliated companies that operate on a different schedule, for example, some of our teams are working on weekends, so we need to ensure IT availability 24-7. Like many digital businesses, we are managing resilient systems, with built-in redundancy, so that’s another reason we need constant visibility into infrastructure.


The company’s operations are highly integrated and interdependent. Sales, production, plan drawings, construction, intelligent warehouse servers…, monitoring extends across a wide scope of business-critical digital activity. Centreon covers basic checks on machine and service availability and overall visibility over system health. A diversity of assets is being monitored in the cloud and on premises, including printers (i.e., the paper supply for printing plans), data centers, system temperature and power units, network devices, VPN tunnels, firewalls, routers, and a range of technical assets.

Expanding monitoring needs to match digital business evolution

Zeppelin Systems has been able to scale the IT monitoring platform as digital business’s needs grew. From classic monitoring a decade ago, to building a more robust, flexible, and centralized platform with the help of Cancom (formerly S&L), a local Centreon partner, to today leveraging the time-saving options of automatic discovery and configuration of new assets to monitor and further developing IT monitoring capabilities with the Centreon IT Edition.

With Centreon, Zeppelin Systems always had the flexibility to decide on its own monitoring journey, when and how to scale to evolving needs,” sums up Jonas Kemmer, Coordinator IT Infrastructure at Zeppelin Systems. The company also has the peace of mind of future readiness, knowing that Centreon will also be scaling up to the next evolution of their monitoring needs, enhancing integration with other ITOps and ITSM tools.

Consolidating monitoring efforts

Zeppelin Systems is still working to centralize monitoring efforts. Each team member is responsible for their own checks, relying on a unified Centreon platform. “As we are now moving forward with the Centreon IT Edition, we are going to be able to further develop our IT monitoring capabilities. We’ll be able to add hosts automatically, leveraging the autodiscovery and monitoring connector functionalities, and we’ll be able to eliminate misconfiguration risks,” explains Dierk.

Jonas adds: “We’re getting busier than ever, and we have much less time to devote to managing the IT monitoring system. Getting Tim at Cancom to improve our monitoring capabilities and now implementing the Centreon IT Edition are part of efforts to streamline and simplify processes. It makes a huge difference in freeing up our attention and energies where they are most needed.”

Relying on expert Centreon support at all steps of the monitoring journey

Cancom (previously S&L) is the local Centreon partner chosen by Zeppelin Systems to develop the monitoring system from a technical point of view. Centreon will also be supporting Zeppelin Systems, as the company takes its first steps with the commercial Centreon IT Edition.

Cancom helped Zeppelin Systems in 2021 with upgrading the initial Centreon open source platform to the latest software version. The expert developed the monitoring architecture, installing a monitoring server, created custom modules, and implemented a best-practice notification system.

We ensured Zeppelin Systems could go further with their open source solution by creating a professional monitoring environment. We also made sure the system stayed up-to-date. We’re now helping them with a new stage in their journey, implementing the Centreon IT edition,” explains Tim Hürter, Manager Monitoring Solution & Linux, Cancom. Centreon will also be providing technical support.

Evolving from open source to the commercial Centreon IT Edition

Zeppelin Systems is seeing many advantages in staying within the Centreon environment. Evolving from Centreon open source to the Centreon IT Edition will enable the team to:

  • Be better equipped to face the challenges of monitoring ever-changing cloud assets.
  • Handle dependencies between on-premise and cloud devices with more ease.
  • Manage the entire digital value chain seamlessly.
  • Retain custom-developed modules and compatibility with the third-party tools employed to visualize monitoring data and to generate reports.
  • Further streamline and automate access to the centralized monitoring solution, leveraging APIs and creating shortcuts to access the monitoring software faster.
  • Enhance overall monitoring capabilities and prepare for the future.

Centreon remains the best option for us to monitor our growing environment, without losing all the custom integrations we have built over the years. Our team gets to keep a solution they like and know well, while also enjoying modernized IT monitoring capabilities.” Jonas Kemmer, Coordinator IT Infrastructure at Zeppelin Systems

Expert advice for scaling up monitoring

Tim Hürter, Manager Monitoring Solution & Linux at Cancom has been supporting Zeppelin Systems during a previous cycle of IT monitoring modernization and with the implementation of the Centreon IT Edition. He shares some advice for organizations that are considering scaling up their monitoring capabilities starting from a Centreon open source platform.

  • Don’t automate for the sake of automation. Automation needs to be carefully considered as it may generate unintended consequences in your environment.
  • Think about the way you want to be notified when there are problems or errors. Email is great, but think outside the box: push notifications from other applications: Messenger, Microsoft teams, etc. Centreon supports this.
  • Add some redundancy for critical notifications. SMS are a helpful option to consider, because the email server or your Internet connection may not be available.
  • Professional services from a Centreon consultant are your best option for getting the most of your Centreon platform, faster. Benefit from precious and efficient support to set up business modules, BI and reporting services, and gain helpful general insights. Centreon can do much more than check if systems are running, help you plan capacity or report on network uptimes. A little help can go a long way.
  • Service mapping (available with Centreon Business Edition) is really something to consider if you want to see inside your production environment. For main business processes, you’ll get to see the entire digital value chain, the interdependencies between digital equipment or assets, whether on premises, at the edge or in the cloud. It’s much faster to spot an issue and fix it with that level of visibility.
  • Logging and IT monitoring are two important and complementary aspects of digital performance monitoring. Make sure you combine them. Centreon connects with logging tools such as Splunk or Graylog. This reinforces your IT environment. 


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