Fortunately, some of the other nefarious goals have not come to pass. We still are able to use whatever device we want to connect to the internet and are not limited to a walled garden. We also can transfer media files between (most) devices without needing a license for each device. And encryption capabilities are easier to implement and for the most part protect our privacy instead of protecting the software companies' "intellectual property." We definitely owe a debt of gratitude to groups like the EFF and Free Software Foundation for standing up to the lobbyists that pushed the trusted computing platform.
OP - For what it's worth, any open source monitoring software should play just fine with OpenVPN. However, the monitoring feature set should be simplified into a single interface, you don't want to have to be fixing scripts and maintaining the software all the time.
I actually used to deploy OpenVPN + Zenoss for remote site monitoring. In my case I needed to monitor multiple systems at the customer premises (using Zenoss Enterprise/Service Dynamics for the remote collector integration), but you should have it a bit easier since you only have one server to monitor. I found configuring OpenVPN to be a bit of a challenge, but once that part was done the rest was a piece of cake. It will be a lot of work with the sheer volume of 500 clients (with that amount of traffic you might even need to break it into two OpenVPN endpoints) but I'm sure you are already aware of that.
I would say definitely take a closer look at Zenoss Core. A side note, Zenoss Service Dynamics is their enterprise product with advance features, but for you the "technology stack" needs only to consist of Zenoss Core (free) + OpenVPN. Set up OpenVPN as you described so that the clients deployed on your remote servers can connect back through https - as long as they have an internet connection no holes need to be poked through your customer's firewalls. Drop Zenoss on the OpenVPN endpoint box(s). Then use the OpenVPN IPs to monitor the servers. For each individual server, configure the SNMP string if Linux, or set up WMI if windows (no need to configure traps, Zenoss polls the boxes at specific intervals). Use the wizard on the Zenoss web interface to add the host and model it. Away you go, you can now see the events in the Zenoss console for everything from ping status to CPU utilization. Events go to the console which you can monitor, or you can easily set up e-mail alerts to trigger. For example, say one of the disks throws a SMART error; trigger an e-mail you so you can ship the customer a new disk to install just like NetApp does.
As I mentioned, you can definitely use Zabbix or some other variant to do the monitoring part. I researched and played with many monitoring solutions (commercial and free) before I settled on Zenoss. What made the difference for me was that I found I was spending way too much time learning the quirks of the software (e.g. Nagios - config file to add a client, really! SolarWinds - Agent installation required, really!) and not enough time actually deploying monitoring to the targets. Good luck, hopefully this info helps you find the right fit for your environment!
Engadget also has a video of the cooling jet re-purposed to play a Christmas song."
I believe it's the first link in the summary, but I could be wrong: NYTimes, 7-Feb-2011
Thanks, I read that after I took a few seconds to bypass the paywall. I guess the NYT is a source, but unfortunately the story is very devoid of facts... only that one line on the theft (and an interview with a scrap metal guy and a politician unrelated to the incident)? Not one snippet anywhere else on any of the major news sites? Either I'm not looking hard enough (probably) or the theft was conjured up to add some drama to the story... anyone to disprove that silly theory?
Link to Original Source