Installing the host agent on UNIX

Supported operating systems and platform architectures

Tile Version Architecture Bitness
AIX [1] 7.x PowerPC 32 bit
AIX [1:1] 7.x PowerPC 64 bit
Solaris 10+ SPARC 32 bit
Solaris 10+ SPARC 64 bit


A Java Development Kit (JDK) needs to be available for the agent. You can see the list of supported JDKs as follows. There are two options:

  1. The easiest is to place or link that JDK into <instana-agent-dir>/jvm (so that <instana-agent-dir>/jvm/bin/java exists).

  2. The customizable way is to export an environment variable called JAVA_HOME to point to that JDK (this environment variable can be also set by running <instana-agent-dir>/bin/setenv).

At the moment, the following JVMs are supported for running the agent:

It is important that the JVM is executable for any user on the system. You are recommended to use the latest available patch release of the Java distribution of your choice. The agent requires a JDK thats supports TLSv1.3 (available in all current JDK 8 and JDK 11 builds). Note that depending on your OS distribution, the packages provided by the OS distributor might not contain strong encryption support due to export control. If you use such a package, you might meet errors like java.lang.RuntimeException: Could not generate DH key pair.

Installing the host agent

  1. Sign in to the Instana UI, and then select an option to display the agent catalog; for example, on the home page, click Deploy Agent.

    If you are starting a new trial instance of Instana, the agent catalog is displayed with a prompt to select a host agent to install.

  2. Click the tile UNIX

  3. Select the packaging option to install a dynamic or static agent.

  4. In the dropdown menu, select your platform architecture.

    The archive file is automatically preconfigured with your Instana account settings so that you only need to extract and start the agent.

  5. Click the download link, and then extract the agent archive.

Starting the host agent

To start the host agent, run the following command:


Checking the status of the host agent

After installing the host agent, you can check the status on the Agents dashboard in the Instana UI. To display the Agents dashboard, click More > Agents from the navigation menu on the Instana UI.

To find a host agent in a list of host agents, you can use the search bar with a simple string like Windows, or the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) of the host, or more complex strings that use a query syntax. For more information, click (?) in the search bar, or see the topic Filter with Dynamic Focus.

To check the status of the host agent on Unix, run the following command:


To stop the host agent, run the following command:


Uninstalling the host agent

To uninstall a host agent, stop the host agent, and then delete the installation folders.

Configuring the host agent

For more information about the host agent configuration, see Host agent configuration.

Troubleshooting agent deployment

If installing the agent is not successful at first, you can check log messages and troubleshooting tips. If this troubleshooting section does not answer the questions you have, contact the IBM Instana support team with information about your experience, so that we can help you and update our documentation accordingly.

For troubleshooting information that is general to all host agents, see Managing host agents / Troubleshooting.

Uncompressing the host agent tarball

There have been several cases reported, especially for Solaris, of customers using pre-POSIX tar utilities that are not capable of handling filenames longer than 100 characters. You should use a GNU tar for uncompressing the host agent tarball.

  1. Monitoring is supported on Virtual I/O Server (VIOS) that runs on AIX. Before you install the agent, you must set up the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) environment. To initiate the OEM setup and installation environment, run oem_setup_env command. ↩︎ ↩︎