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Developer(s) The Cacti Group, Inc.
Initial release September 23, 2001; 21 years ago (2001-09-23)[1]
Stable release

1.2.23  (January 2, 2023; 28 days ago (2023-01-02))

Preview release none [±]
Written in PHP, PL/SQL
Operating system Cross-platform
Type Network management software
License(s) GNU General Public License

Cacti is an open-source, web-based graphing tool designed as a front-end application for the open-source, industry-standard data logging tool RRDtool. Cacti allows a user to poll services at predetermined intervals and graph the resulting data. It is generally used to graph time-series data of metrics such as CPU load and network bandwidth utilization.[2] A common usage is to monitor network traffic by polling a network switch or router interface via simple network management protocol (SNMP).

The frontend can handle multiple users, each with their own graph sets[2], so it is sometimes used by web hosting providers[3] (especially dedicated server[4], virtual private server, and collocation providers) to display bandwidth statistics for their customers. It can be used to configure the data collection itself, allowing certain setups to be monitored without any manual configuration of RRDtool.[5] Cacti can be extended to monitor any source via shell scripts and executables.[6]

Cacti can use one of two backends: "cmd.php," a PHP script suitable for smaller installations, or "Spine" (formerly Cactid), a C-based poller which can scale to thousands of hosts.[7][8]

Product history

The Cacti project was first started by Ian Berry on September 2, 2001.[9][10] Berry was inspired to start the project while working for a small ISP while also still in high school, learning PHP and MySQL. His central aim in creating Cacti "was to offer more ease of use than RRDtool and more flexibility than MRTG."[9]

On September 13, 2004, version 0.8.6 was released[11], and with it came more developers and, later on, greater program speed and scalability.[9]

Version 0.8.7 was released for use in October 2007.[12] As of March 2012, a roadmap on the website indicates that version 1.0.0 is scheduled for release in the first quarter of 2012.[13]


Primary features of Cacti include[14]:

  • unlimited graph items
  • auto-padding support for graphs
  • graph data manipulation
  • flexible data sources
  • data gathering on a non-standard timespan
  • custom data-gathering scripts
  • built-in SNMP support
  • graph templates
  • data source templates
  • host templates
  • tree, list, and preview views of graph data
  • user-based management and security

Hardware/software requirements

Installation requirements will vary slightly based upon operating system. See the download page for more information.

Videos, screenshots, and other media

Take a screenshot tour of Cacti on the Cacti website.

Entities using Cacti

Further reading

External links

Cacti can also be found on SourceForge. However, use caution when downloading and installing from there; the install package may contain undesirable add-on software.


  1. "Cacti - Browse / cacti / cacti-0.5". 23 September 2001. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Cacti - What is Cacti?". The Cacti Group, Inc.. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  3. "Cacti Bandwidth Graphing". 3DPixel Ltd.. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  4. Morley, Simon (21 January 2011). "Cacti Server Monitoring". Simon Morley. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  5. "RedHat / CentOS Install and Configure Cacti Network Graphing Tool". Linux Magazine. 12 January 2012. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  6. "Cacti - Features". The Cacti Group, Inc.. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  7. Adams, Larry (31 May 2009). "How to install poller cactid or spine on linux". Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  8. "Cacti - Spine Information". The Cacti Group, Inc.. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Goldman, George (17 January 2007). "The network graphing solution Cacti was designed to provide more ease of use than RRDtool and more flexibility than MRTG". ISP-Planet. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  10. "Cacti". Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  11. "Cacti - Browse / cacti / cacti-0.8.6". 13 September 2004. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  12. "Cacti - Browse / cacti / cacti-0.8.7". 23 October 2007. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  13. "Cacti - Development Road Map". The Cacti Group, Inc.. 11 September 2011. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  14. "Cacti - Features". The Cacti Group, Inc. Retrieved 16 March 2012.