This is the documentation page for an unsupported version of Zabbix.
Is this not what you were looking for? Switch to the current version or choose one from the drop-down menu.

15. Distributed monitoring


Zabbix provides effective and reliable ways of monitoring distributed IT infrastructure. The two main solutions for large environments provided by Zabbix are:

Proxies can be used to collect data locally on behalf of a centralized Zabbix server and then report the data to the server. Nodes are full Zabbix servers that can be set up in a hierarchy of distributed monitoring.

Proxy vs. node

When making a choice between using a proxy or a node, several considerations must be taken into account.

Proxy Node
Lightweight Yes No
GUI No Yes
Works independently Yes Yes
Easy maintenance Yes No
Automatic DB creation1 Yes No
Local administration No Yes
Ready for embedded hardware Yes No
One way TCP connections Yes Yes
Centralised configuration Yes No
Generates notifications No Yes

[1] Automatic DB creation feature only works with SQLite. Other databases require a manual setup.