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I am happy to announce General Availability (GA) of SolarWinds Network Configuration Manager (NCM) v7.3. Above all, I would like to draw your attention to the major architectural improvement that we have implemented in this version: NCM and Core/NPM databases have been merged. This improvement:

  • Considerably simplifies installation, upgrade, and maintenance;
  • Represents one further step towards full integration with other Orion modules;
  • Is a prerequisite to the following enhancements:
    • Account limitations applied to NCM jobs.
    • Core node management page is used to add/remove devices from NCM.
    • Node sync is gone. (No more issues with NPM and NCM databases containing contradicting data.)
    • Subviews are fully supported.

 

In addition to the database merge, we have implemented the following improvements:

  • A completely new version of the Configuration Management page
  • EoL/EoS feature enhancements
    • Improved matching reliability for EoL/EoS.
    • EoL/EoS data includes more information.
  • Admins can clear transfers for other users.
  • Better support of Huawei devices.
  • Jobs Summary table can be sorted according to any column.
  • SWISv3 support

 

Let's take a look at the most important benefits of this release in detail.

 

Making Life Easier with a Single Database

  1. Simpler node management -- You don't have to manage your NCM nodes in two different places; all you need is now covered by the NPM/Core node management page.

    Node-Management.png

  2. Easier product configuration -- There is only one (Orion) configuration wizard now. You don't have to enter two different database credentials in two different configuration tools.
  3. Account limitations applied to jobs -- Not only are the limitations respected by NCM jobs; you are no longer required to have full Orion admin permissions to manage NCM scheduled jobs. All you need is NCM Administrator or Engineer roles. The job uses permissions and limitations of the user account that modified it last.

    Jobs-Summary.PNG
  4. Subviews -- Using a single database schema allows NCM to efficiently support subviews. You can easily switch between information about the same device from different Orion modules.

    Node-Details.png

Smoother Config Management Workflows

Do you want to perform a series of actions on the same set of devices? Are you missing the node tree from the Win32 NCM application in the Web Console? Or do you find the current Configuration Management page in the Web Console a bit cumbersome?

If you have answered "Yes" at least once, you are going to love our brand new Configuration Management UI:

 

Config-Management.PNG

 

Compare-Configs.PNG

 

With this new UI you can:

  • Group the nodes according up to three criteria including node properties, custom properties, device status etc.
  • Cover complex scenario with the same set of nodes. The node selection is persistant -- you can switch between groups of nodes, check transfer status, take different actions -- and the selection stays the same.
  • Proceed with your workflow without interruption -- most of the actions are performed in popup windows.
  • Save your scripts and re-use them later.

 

More Efficient End-of-Life Management (now with color coding!)

We have extended the EoL data with product part numbers for Cisco, in this release. Therefore, NCM is able to find the EoL information for your devices much more easily; all you have to do for this procedure to work is update inventory. Then you will see highly reliable data (marked green).

 

EoL-green.PNG

 

As a bonus, you will get Replacement Part Number and End of Software Maintenance information.

Fellow Engineers,

Starting today, you will have a new and shiny Engineer's Toolset (ETS) v11 RC available for a download at your portal. This version brings a lot of changes, so please read carefully following lines on how to install and activate it...

 

First of all, you may wonder: What's new?

Feature-wise, there are 5 new Web tools that you can run either standalone or integrated with an Orion console and the list includes:

  • Real-time Interface Monitor
  • Real-time Memory Monitor
  • Real-time CPU Monitor
  • Response Time Monitor
  • Trace route

 

These real-time monitoring and troubleshooting tools can render data on the chart in 5 sec intervals with the retention of 10000 points, therefore allowing you to gather hours of granular statistics for one interface, or even 12 interfaces in one chart if you need. Also, you can run up to 3 concurrent tools in the same browser. If a maximum of 12 metrics monitored is not enough for you, there is always an option to switch from the chart to a table view, where hundreds of different metrics can be displayed simultaneously for dozens of interfaces/nodes.

 

Thanks to the native Orion integration, new Toolset on the Web will be accessible also from mobile devices (please note that higher-end devices, with at least 1gb of memory are recommended for the seamless experience (e.g. Samsung S3 will work, iPhone 3 won't...)

 

 

In v11 there also completely new installation and activation steps, summed below in order of importance:

The download package contains 2 installers - 1 for the classic ETS and 1 installer for Toolset on the Web (which includes also Orion core and SQL database). 2 Installers exist because you may wish to install on 2 different machines (e.g. your PC and Orion server). Still, you can install both on Orion server/pc only...

 

 

Since there are 2 installers, there are also 2 activation keys (named respectively) in the licensing section of your customer portal. If you wish to install both, Desktop and Orion Toolset, you will need to use both keys. These RC keys are timebombed and after they expire, your ETS will automatically start using proper v11 keys.

 

Once ETS Web is installed, you should log into the Orion console as Admin to allow other users to run new tools. By default, Admin is the only user given the ability to assign seats to other users. Depending on the number of your Toolset licenses, you will be able to assign respective number of available seats to existing Orion users. Since you can share the credentials between multiple users, we've decided to implement cookies-based access limitation, so you won't be able to run Toolset on the Web from 2 browsers using the same username..

 

Apart from the access administration, you may wish to change default SNMP credentials, metrics which can be monitored or optional thresholds.

 

 

Should you have any difficulties to activate or use the new v11, please don't hesitate create a thread in the Engineer's Toolset Release Candidate group on the Thwack , contact our support or even ask me directly for an assisted installation with the Dev team.

Looking forward your feedback!

Peter Ksenzsigh

Product Manager

The time has come for yet another Log & Event Manager (LEM) Release Candidate! The RC is already available on the Customer Portal for all LEM customers under maintenance. Release Candidates can be deployed in production and are fully supported by our awesome support team. Read on to find out what new features you can play with in this RC!

 

File Integrity Monitoring for Windows

 

File Integrity Monitoring, or FIM, tracks events that occur in the file system.  There are many events that occur in the file system, but most likely you're interested in things like file creates, reads, writes, deletes, permissions changes, and so on.  As with all data sources in LEM, FIM is a connector.  To get FIM up and working, click Manage > Nodes, click the gear next to your node, and hit Connectors.  There you'll see the two new FIM connectors:

FIM Connectors.png


We'll come back to the registry connector in a minute.  Adding a new FIM File and Directory connector brings you into the first FIM configuration screen:

FIM File and Directory Monitors.png


From here you can apply one of our bundled templates as you can see on the left, or create your own custom monitors.  Custom monitors allow you to create sets of conditions, with each condition containing granular configuration of exactly what file system events you're interested in monitoring:

FIM File and Directory Conditions.pngFIM File and Directory Add Condition.png


LEM lets you browse the file system of your remote node right from the manager UI making it that much easier to specify directories:

FIM File and Directory Remote Browse.png


FIM makes full use of templates.  You can use ours, add to ours, create your own, share between administrators, and so on.  We've also extended this FIM logic to the Windows registry.  Take a look:

FIM Registry.png


You can find FIM documentation on pages 38 and 268 to 274 of the User Guide.


In LEM, FIM becomes yet another source of data that you can log, analyze, and take action upon.  With correlation rules, the more information sources you have the more accurate and decisive your alerts and other automatic responses can be.

 

And a Few More Things

 

FIM is the main feature in this RC, but we've done a few other things too:

  • Significant performance improvements for specific types of rules.  Rules that contain either the AND and OR subgroups or the various system look up groups (User Defined Groups, Connector Profiles Groups, Directory Service Groups and/or Time Of Day Sets) may run faster with less RAM and CPU usage.
  • New connectors for LOGbinder EX, Cisco®, VMware® and more.
  • Various bug fixes.


Questions, Issues, Comments - Send 'em Our Way


Feel free to use the Log & Event Manager Release Candidate Thwack forum to report and comment on any issues, questions, or comments you have about this release. Our product management, development, and QA teams are keeping an eye out for any possible issues.


If you have a question about whether a case you've filed was resolved in this release or a certain feature request implemented, feel free to ping back on this post or in the RC forum and let me know - I'll be sure to look into it.


Happy Logging!

It is my sincere privilege to announce General Availability (GA) of Virtualization Manager (VMAN) 6.1. This release of VMAN significantly extends the capabilities of the integration that was delivered with SolarWinds NPM and SAM in VMAN 6.0. One thing that we've consistently heard from customers is that you want to see end-to-end in your environment, from Applications to VM's and through the rest of the virtual infrastructure, in a single pane of glass. 6.1 is one more step in pursuit of that goal. Without further ado, let me introduce you to the new features available in this release (links take you to information covered in the Beta blog posts):

 

  • New Synchronization Wizard to help you get up and running with the integration
    • The team wanted to make sure you could get up and running with the integration as quickly and painlessly as possible. This Wizard is the culmination of all the experience we've gained of how synchronization between these two products can go awry. With the new release, you can stop worrying about troubleshooting the integration and focus on troubleshooting problems in your IT environment.
  • vNodes
    • The features we're delivering in the integration are built around this concept of the "vNode." More than a cute name, it represents a significant departure from how the integration was delivered in VMAN 6.0. In 6.0, in order to see data for VM's you had to manage all of your VM's as Orion Nodes, which basically incurred a "double-licensing tax." Well, no more. With 6.1, you can see the VMAN data in the integration without also managing your VM's as Nodes. These VM's can also be managed as Nodes if you need NPM or SAM specific features, like Asset Inventory or Hardware Health, but it's no longer necessary in order to realize the benefits of the integration. With 6.1, only the top-level datasource (the entity we poll data from), need to be managed as Nodes (e.g. vCenter for VMware or a Hyper-V Host for Hyper-V). vNodes have their own resources and also allow us to deliver features like Hyper-V Clusters, Account View Limitations, and Alerting and Reporting on VMAN entities in Orion.
  • Account View Limitations (Role-based Access Control) on Virtualization Manager data presented in the integration
    • The integration now allows using Orion's Account View Limitations, a feature required in order for Virt Admins to complete the delivery of the private cloud to their internal customers. Limit at the vCenter level, the VM level or anywhere in between to limit views to only what consumers of the private cloud need to see.
  • Baselines (aka Dynamic Thresholds) for VMs, Hosts, Clusters, and Datastores
    • Following in the footsteps of SAM 6.0 and NPM 10.7, VMAN 6.1 has extended the baseline threshold capability to the virtual environment. No more need to play psychic in setting static thresholds across your virtual environment - let VMAN do the hard work for you. 
  • Use Orion's Advanced Alerting Engine and New Web-based Reporting on data presented in the integration
    • Now you can build reports on your applications and Guest OS status information right along side reports on your virtual infrastructure, all from the same interface.
  • Significant improvements to data collection and processing on the VMAN virtual appliance (vApp)
    • The engineering team has done a fantastic job in making the necessary changes to make VMAN truly an Enterprise-class monitoring system. With a properly sized server and a tuned appliance, VMAN is now ready to monitor even the largest VMware and Hyper-V environments.
  • Gen3 Licensing
    • No more applying new keys when you renew your Maintenance!
  • Bug fixes and stability improvements


Get Started with 6.1 Today

 

  1. Download 6.1 - For existing VMAN customers, you can download directly from your Customer Portal.If you're interesting in learning more about VMAN or downloading an evaluation copy of 6.1, I recommend going to the Virtualization Manager product page.
  2. Install the VMAN 6.1 vApp
  3. Run the IVIM 1.10 (included in the vApp download) installer on top of SAM 6.1 or NPM 10.7
  4. In SAM/NPM, go to Settings > Settings section > Virtualization Settings.
  5. Go to Setup Virtualization Manager integration
  6. Enter the required information, press Submit. This will launch the new Synchronization Wizard and off you go!

 

or Check out the Live Demo!

The Release Candidate for Serv-U 15.1.0 is now ready! The new Serv-U version is packed with great new features and many improvements. RC is the last step before general availability, and it is a chance for existing customers to get the newest functionality before it is available to everyone else. You can download it from the LATEST DOWNLOADS FOR YOUR PRODUCTS section of the customer portal. Change filter to "Release Candidate" and click on download button next to Serv-U RC version.

 

The following are some of the highlights of the new version.

 

Redesigned Management Console

The new UI is probably the first thing you will notice in this release – and it's a huge change. We started with the redesign of the Web Client and the File Sharing UI in the previous version, and now we've updated the Management Console too. The new look is not only modern and simpler, but also faster. When you sign in as an administrator, you may also notice the new dashboard with heaps of useful statistics, notifications about new updates, and a What's New area featuring a few highlights of the latest release of Serv-U.

 

Serv-U - Home (20140506).png

 

Automated File Management

Often you may want to move or delete files after a certain period of time to back up your data or to purge unnecessary files from your storage. In the Directories section of the global server settings or domain settings, you will find a new tab: File Management. As the following screenshot illustrates, you can simply define the file path, the action and the number of days after which you want to execute the given action.

Screen Shot 2014-05-07 at 12.49.05.png

 

Support for Multiple SSH/SFTP keys per user

Up until now you could only use a single key per user. Now you can use multiple keys per account if you want to rotate them or if you want to provide shared access to an account. You can find a new button, Manage Keys, in the user properties page.

manage_Keys.png

 

After clicking Manage Keys..., you will see the UI to add, edit, delete or generate new keys.

 

Screen Shot 2014-05-07 at 12.52.40.png

 

Ability to Share Files That are Already on the Server

With the first version of file sharing you could only share files from your computer. However, users typically already have a Serv-U account, and also some files in their home folder. Now it is possible to share these files, and even combine them with files from your computer. You can simply create a new share, and when you're uploading files, you can browse to local files on your desktop (Files on my Computer option) or remote files in your Serv-U home folder (Files on Serv-U option). This will create a combined file share.

share files from serv-u.png

 

If you choose a file stored on Serv-U, the file will not be copied – the share will reference the file instead of duplicating it. This means that if you move or delete the file, it won't be available in the file share anymore. If you update the file via the Web Client or via FTP, the very same version will be available in the file share, and you won't need to update the share manually.

 

Domain Setup Wizard for File Sharing

The new wizard will make it much easier to configure a file sharing domain or a file transfer domain. It is intended to speed up the initial configuration and help to correctly set up a domain, especially if you are new to Serv-U. Click the '+' button below the Serv-U logo to start the new domain wizard.

 

new domain button.png

 

After specifying the domain name and description, you can choose the type of domain you want to configure. You can always refine your decisions later, and further modify the configuration of the new domain.

Screen Shot 2014-05-07 at 13.16.49.png

 

File Sharing Administration Options

The new version of Serv-U provides you with the flexibility to define who can use file sharing and how. So far file sharing could be enabled for everyone or for no one, however, now you can configure its availability per domain, per group, and even per user with many detailed options available at all levels:

 

  • Require a password for guest access
  • Insert a password  within invitation emails
  • Specify the maximum file size guests can upload (per file)
  • Specify the time period before the guest link expires
  • Duration before guest link expires
  • Notify a user after a file is downloaded
  • Notify a user after a file is uploaded
  • Send the guest access link to the recipients
  • Send the guest access link to the sender
  • Allow user-defined contact information
  • Specify the maximum number of files for "Sent" shares
  • Specify the maximum number of files for "Requested" shares

 

The following screenshot provides an example setting for a password policy for shares.

Screen Shot 2014-05-06 at 13.49.37.png

 

Ability to Make Anonymous Shares

An anonymous share is simply a share where no recipients are defined and no emails are sent. You can share the link to the file share on forums, social networks, or instant messaging clients, or you can click Generate an email on the last screen of the file share wizard, and use your default email client to benefit from your address book and other features you are used to.

 

generate_email.png

 

Ability to Search in File Shares

If you use file sharing extensively, you probably have dozens, maybe even hundreds of shares. They will eventually expire, but if you want to find a share you created week ago, now you can do it using the free text search. Simply type the name of the file, the email address or a key word from the email message. You can also limit the search to "Send Files" shares, "Requested Files" shares, or both.

 

search in shares.png

Custom Branding for Guest UI of File Sharing

The new version makes it possible to use custom branding not only for the login page or the Web Client, but also for the file sharing guest UI. If you want to try it, you can find branding samples in C:\Program Files\Rhinosoft\Serv-U\Customer HTML Samples, and use them to change the style in Limits & Settings > Custom HTML. The following screenshot shows one of the available branding samples.

 

Screen Shot 2014-05-07 at 13.26.50.png

 

Other Improvements

This version also features several other improvements such as enhanced Active Directory and LDAP support for authentication, improved Web Client performance, especially when using it over Serv-U Gateway, links to file shares in the notification emails, and many bug fixes.

 

RC builds are made available to existing customers prior to the formal release. These are used to get customer feedback in production environments, and are fully supported.

 

You can download the RC from the LATEST DOWNLOADS FOR YOUR PRODUCTS section of the customer portal. Change filter to "Release Candidate" and click on download button next to Serv-U RC version.

Network Topology Mapper 2.1 Release Candidate will be generally available soon. This RC bits will be made available in SolarWinds customer portal, to all our customers who are on active maintenance.


RC builds are made available prior to the formal release, to existing customers under active maintenance. These are used to get your feedback in production environments and are fully supported. SolarWinds Support are prepared to take on any support cases referencing RC built and our engineering team are on standby to handle any escalated issues reported.


Now to the notable features packed in 2.1

  • SNMP V3 AES 192 & 256 Encryption Support
    • Use-Case: Users who have their devices configured for AES encryption 192 or 256 keys, can take advantage of the product discovering those nodes and mapping out the network.
    • Work Flow:
      • Create a New Network Scan
      • In SNMP Credentials page, click on Add Credential
      • Give a unique credential name, which will help you identify this entered credential from the rest of the entered or going to be entered credentials
      • Choose the radio button called SNMPv3
      • Enter the User Name, select between MD5 & SHA1 authentication methods
      • Choose the encryption method, which has been configured on your devices, select from DES56, AES128, AES192, AES256
      • Test your entered credential with any one of node IP Address configured for SNMP V3 AES192 or AES256 encryption.

 

 

  • Enhanced Node Properties PageRight Tab.png
    • Use-Case:
      • Right Pane - Grid and tab display: Obtain detail node information along with visibility of your discovered map
      • Node information for multiple nodes on the map, by single-click a given node one at a time.
      • Visualize fields with lengthy text without ever being truncated.
      • Share basic node information content to colleagues, using the new copy to clipboard function.
    • Work Flow:
      • Select any node on the map, right-click and choose node properties
      • This action will trigger the opening of the right pane, and auto populate the data for the selected node
      • The Right Pane be default will display three tabs, namely Node Details, Interface Data & VLAN Data
      • Node Details tab - Gives useful information about the identified node like the Node name, Node role, IP Address, Vendor etc. Fields like Node Name, Primary Node Role, polling IP Address and Custom Properties can be edited/changed/added depending on the user's need. The basic information section, also holds an option to copy to clipboard the displayed data for sharing purposes.
      • Interface Data tab - Displays the STP data for the given switch and ARP cache identified from the node.
      • VLAN tab - Is a new tab we introduced in the application, which maps interface names to the VLAN ID/Name for the selected node.


  • Polling and displaying VLAN data for Juniper, HP/3Com and other vendor devices which provide VLAN data using Q-Bridge MIB
    • Use-Case:
      • Create an dynamic design map for a given VLAN(s), for network analysis

      • Analysis & Understand which nodes participate for a given VLAN

      • Option of displaying VLAN(s) on connection links for easier & faster referencing

      • Generate static Visio, PDF & PNG format VLAN designed map for sharing, referencing or archiving.

      • Export VLAN design map(s) to the Orion console, for visual referencing and monitoring.

      • Understand and Analysis, the VLAN parameters for a given switch.

        • VLANs configured on a particular switch
        • VLANs to interface mapping.
      • Identify configured VLAN IP Address for referencing, configuring and designing using VLAN Reports

    • Work Flow:
      • Analysis & Understand which nodes participate for a given VLAN
        • On the left pane, section Network Tree View - Group by. Choose VLAN
        • Un-check all the filters and select the ones you want to map (We are now displaying the VLAN Name to the ID, for better understanding and referencing)
      • Option of displaying VLAN(s) on connection links
        • On the left pane, section Connection Display Options
        • Under Layer 2 (Switches) filter, one can find a new filter call VLAN
        • Once the filter is on, this map can be export to generate static Visio, PDF & PNG format.
        • The displayed map, can be export to Orion Network Atlas and brought up on the Orion console.
      • Analysis, the VLAN parameters for a given switch
        • Right-Click a node and choose Node properties
        • Under VLAN data, obtain and understand interfaces configured to which VLANs
      • Identify configured VLAN IP Address
        • Choose Reports from the Menu bar
        • Select VLAN Reports
        • VLAN Reports have 3 new columns namely Interface Name, VLAN Status and VLAN IP Address

VLAN Data.png vlan report.png


  • NTM Help Menu - Discovery Log & SNMPWALK Utility                                                                                                          help menu.png
    • Use-Case:
      • Troubleshoot issues like nodes not identified correctly and links/connections misses
      • In Product SNMPWALK utility, run and launch the snmpwalk utility from the application
      • Check for any latest Software Update for the application and download
      • Direct access to NTM Thwack Forum to gather information about the product and to create feature requests.
      • Tech Diagnostics Utility now offers our users to package walks from devices or other files (like visio output, pictures etc) with the diagnostics package for SolarWinds Engineering investigation.

        log.png

  • Other Enhancements
    • Search bar into Reports
    • Interface display name is now configurable and the default display character count has been increased to 20.
    • Export of Interface display names, Speed and VLAN display to Visio (We recommend not to enable many display filters, the result could have your maps looking noisy)
    • Informative Discovery Scan Messaging
    • Incorporated better merging algorithm after completion of every discovery scan.

 

WE WANT YOUR COMMENTS !

Once we announce the RC availability, be sure to check out the Network Topology Mapper RC Group here on thwack. If there are any known issues reported we will be putting it up there and will be happy to answer questions about the RC and features in the RC.

If you decide to install the RC binaries, you will be one of the first recipients of 2.1. Because you’ll be one of the first, Product management and Engineering will be actively monitoring your posts and engage with you about any feedback you have. You can also raise a ticket to support about 2.1 RC and its fully supportable. Your feedback is important to us and we want to make sure your upgrade experience a smooth one.

 

Tip: If you install the Release Candidate in your production environment and post to the Release Candidate forum about your upgrade experience we would reward you with 2,000 thwack points + a badge award for participation

The recorder is a central part of Web Performance Monitor, helping you to easily record your transactions instead of doing tedious scripting. We are working on the next release and wanted to share our progress with you!

 

Multi-selection of steps

It is a good habit to optimize your transaction before deploying to production. Ideally transactions should contain only the steps required for monitoring. The recorder occasionally captures and records unnecessary actions like mousing over some elements, which can be usually be removed safely without affecting the transaction. In the past you had to delete these steps one by one. To avoid this hassle, the recorder will now allow selecting multiple steps at once with the shift key to select a continuous block of steps or the control key to select steps one by one.

multi-select in timeline.png

 

Once all steps are selected you can perform several actions: delete them, make all steps optional, make all steps required, or make them conditional. If a step is optional, it will not fail the whole transaction in case the step itself fails. You can revert this by making it required again. We will talk about conditional steps later.

 

multi-select with menu.png

 

Multi-Variant Text Inputs

There are times when you need to enter text into the page to fill-in the login forms, test a search or answer security questions. The last one is especially tricky, as one day you are asked about your pet's name and the next day your hometown. The Multi-Variant Text Inputs feature allows you to look for a string on the page and based on the that enter different text into forms.

 

To use Multi-Variant Text Input first enter some text into the field and record the text input action.

simply text input in timelines.png

 

When the action is recorded, double-click on the text input action and you will notice a new option which allows you to change simple text input into Multi-Variant Text Input. After changing the type of action, you can add more options and even define default text. Default text is used if no text match is successful.

multi-variant text input UI.png

After you've added a few more options for Multi-Variant Text Input action the title will change in the timeline to reflect this change.

multi-variant text input in timeline.png

Positive and Negative Matches

There are two types of matches for verification, text match and image match. Another improvement we are working on is that both matches can have positive and negative variants. So you can be looking for a text or image which is or is not on the page.

Image_Match_UI marked.png

These two possible states are also indicated in the timeline.

Image_Match_in_Timeline marked.png

This is not only useful for conditionals (which are described later), but also can be used in any kind of generic verification (especially textual) of transaction health.

Simple Conditionals

The most complex feature we are working on in the recorder are simple conditionals. There are many examples of webpages where this could be handy. Already mentioned are random security questions, requests to participate in surveys, advertisements, campaigns, planned maintenance notifications and many others. With Simple conditionals, you can make some of the steps of normally sequential transitions conditional and handle the variation in certain web application behaviors.

 

Anatomy of Conditional

There are two types of conditions, text match and image match. Both can be used to trigger a conditional block of steps. Imagine you have a random advertisement displayed on web page. You can simply detect an image such as logo on the webpage and if the image match is successful, the next conditional step is clicking on the icon to close that advertisement.

 

Each conditional block must be preceded by a condition. Both conditions can have positive and negative matches. You can be looking for a text or image which is or is not on the page and thus have either positive or negative branches for a condition.

 

A condition is followed by a conditional block with at least one step. The conditional block has always only one branch and is performed based on condition results.

 

To visually differentiate conditional blocks and also differentiate positive and negative conditions we use a different background for steps in the timeline: yellow for positive match and blue for negative match.

 

positive_and_negative_conditional_blocks marked.png

Recording a conditional block

You can start recording a conditional block by enabling Conditional Mode. To enable this mode click the new button from the menu.

 

Conditional Mode button marked.png

Since a conditional block requires a control action - condition - you will be prompted to choose from:

 

  1. New Text match action
  2. New Image match action
  3. Using already recorder preceding action if there is any

Control_Action_UI.png

After you choose the control action you simply continue to record actions. Actions are all conditional until you click the button again and disable conditional mode.

 

Another way to make a conditional block is to select multiple steps which are already recorded, then right-click and choose "Make actions conditional" item from the contextual menu. You will be again asked if you want to enter a new control action or use existing and the steps will be highlighted as conditional.

 

This was a quick overview of what kind of some of the improvements we are working on in the Recorder. Is there more? You bet!  We will give you more of a sneak peek in a future post (you can look forward to better correlating information from SAM and NPM to monitored Transactions or more on custom properties and some more mentioned in What We're Working On - Web Performance Monitor).

 

Stay tuned!

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