Sorry, I should have explained better the first time.
My application collects data from industrial PLC's via OPC, it is running on 
quite a number of
clients which I cannot constantly check manually.
I already have functions to detect failure conditions like no connection to the 
PLC or lost
connection to the database and such. If that happens and the program cannot 
recover by itself, I get
an email so that I can take measures.

The linchpin of all this is, that the program itself is up and running, doesn't 
hang and that it can
still response. Otherwise, days can go by and no data is recorded.

So my idea was to have a little watchdog (to be programmed) running on a server 
which regularly
connects to all of the clients to get a response that all is well. The response 
could by for example
the timestamp of the last data received from the PLC or similar.
In case there is no response or the timestamp is too old, the watchdog notifies 
me by email.


>> I would like to implement a new feature into one of my applications 
>> where I can ask for a status
>> through a (VPN)network connection, kind of like Nagios does.
> Status of what? 
>> Or maybe even build functionality into it so that it can be queried
>> by Nagios.
> Query what?  
> Nagios is a Linux network monitoring tool, one of dozens, which I believe
> variously uses SNMP, HTTP.  

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