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I am happy to introduce our latest free tool, Event Log Forwarder for WindowsIf you own an Orion family product or Kiwi Syslog, you may already be familiar with this tool, as we previously offered this as a free add-on or application you had access to as a customer.  Based on feedback from our customers and how much people love this tool we decided to make it free to all.

 

Many folks have dozens, if not hundreds of Windows Servers.  Trying to monitor the Windows Event Logs for specific errors, warnings, etc. is a pain point to ensure the servers and apps on it are running well.  Many folks may be running a Syslog server (like Orion SAM/NPM or  Kiwi Syslog) for gathering Syslog messages from your network equipment as an example or have a log management solution (like Log & Event Manager) for centralizing and analyzing all of your logs.  Event Log Forwarder for Windows helps these folks and is a lightweight app or agent you install on Windows machines which you care about looking for specific events.

 

A very basic example is failed login attempts to a Windows Server.  Someone mistypes a password and you get one or two here and there, no biggie.  However, if you see a spike and consistent pattern of failed login attempts, you are going to want to dig a bit deeper.

 

Simply define a subscription or what are the key events you care to know about and look for, as shown in the dialog below.

ELF2.png

 

When we find a match, we take that Windows Event and wrap it up as a Syslog message and based on the defined Syslog Facility you define to categorize this event, we send it off to one or more defined Syslog servers.  Depending on your environment we can send it as a standard UDP message or you can set it to use TCP as well for reliable delivery.

ELF1.png

 

That’s it, simple and easy.  Install on one Windows box or a thousand, it’s up to you.  SolarWinds Event Log Forwarder for Windows is another free tool from SolarWinds we hope everyone can use and enjoy and you can download it here.  If you have any questions or comments about this free tool, head on over to our thwack forum for this free tool.

In my last post, I told you about some new features that provide a dashboard style summary view of your database environment when you integrate Database Performance Analyzer (DPA) with Server Application Monitor (SAM).  I also explained a little bit about database wait time. I'll expand upon that in this post as I tell you about ways DPA can help you inspect your database instance for performance bottlenecks.  Please note that we have also just made DPA 9.1 Release Candidate available for download.  As you can see, we've been very busy at Solarwinds with back to back releases running in parallel development!  I hope you like what I'm about to show you and invite you to consider joining The Beta which is open to customers with both DPA and SAM currently on active maintenance.  To try it out, please fill out this short survey. 

 

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In this 3 part series, I'm going to tell you about :

 

NOTICE : This is BETA, so there is no promise that what you see here will be delivered as is.


In the first part of this post I'll describe the integration process.  It's designed to be very automagic but provides flexibility to tweak a configuration to meet the needs of more complex environments.  After you've completed the Integration Wizard, Orion implements your integration as follows :

  • A Databases tab is added to the top row of tabs.
  • A Summary View is populated with SAM health and DPA performance data.
  • Instance Views are set up for database instances monitored by only DPA.
  • Instance Sub-Views are set up for database instances monitored by both DPA and SAM.
  • A special DPA resource is added to application views that monitor database clients.*I'll talk about this more in the next post.

 

FeaturesDisplay

Getting Started: The Integration Wizard is designed to streamline the integration of DPA with Orion. The process of integrating DPA to Orion begins on the DPA Settings screen. *NOTE* that these instructions are assuming you've installed and configured both DPA and SAM to monitor your database instances.  Once that is done, to start the integration :

  1. Click the "Settings" link in the upper right hand of Orion.
  2. Click the "DPA Settings" link in the "Product Specific Settings" section.
  3. Click "Set Up Integration" to begin.

wizard-1.JPG


Turning on Integration : For the most part, to integrate, you tell Orion where DPA is, how to log in, and then your job is mostly confirming the mappings we'll suggest but you will have opportunities to manually tweak these mappings. 


To turn on integration you need the following information :

  • Server name or IP address of your DPA repository
  • Port number of DPA's SSL URL i.e. HTTPS://my.domain.local:8124
  • User name of an administrative account
  • Password


Once done, you can test the connection then submit and start the wizard.  When you submit, DPA and SAM will compare notes and present you with the first mapping screen.


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Mapping Database Instances : In order to attach DPA functionality to all the right nodes in Orion, during the configuration of DPA integration, we ask you to confirm that we have mapped the right nodes in Orion to the database instances registered in DPA.  This enables us to add functionality to database instances you're already monitoring by adding a sub-view.  If you aren't already monitoring that database instance, the wizard will show no relationship for that database instance and upon completion of the wizard, the same DPA information will be presented in a default view for that database instance.  You can see the sub-view and it's benefits below, where I describe The Database Instance View.


  • Take a moment to review the mappings DPA and SAM found.
  • As long as SAM and DPA know your database instances by the same IP address, you can just click next.
    • Possible Exceptions where SAM and DPA know a database instance by different IP Addresses:
      • DPA or SAM knows a database instance by a Cluster VIP and the other knows that instance by individual node IPs.
      • DPA has registered an Availability Group listener and SAM has registered individual nodes.
      • SAM and DPA are using DNS aliases that each have different IP addresses for the same database instance.
      • A database instance is using DHCP and both SAM and DPA have different DNS servers resolving to different IPs.


  • If you wish to exclude one of DPAs monitored instances, un-check it.

  • When a link exists, the status column will show a chain link.ChainLinkIcon.JPG
  • When a link does not exist, the status column will show a slashed circle.SlashedCircleIcon.JPG
  • If you need to add a mapping, click the add link icon in the actions column.AddLinkIcon.JPG
  • If you need to edit a mapping, click the pencil icon in the actions column.PencilIcon.JPG
  • If you need to remove a mapping, click remove link icon in the actions column.RemoveLinkIcon.JPG
  • Click Next when you are happy with the configuration.
wizard1.JPG

Mapping Database Clients : The next step of configuration is to confirm that we have accurately mapped database clients per DPA to the applications you monitor in SAM.  We do this by mapping the IP of the database clients DPA sees to the IP addresses of nodes where your applications reside.  How do we do this?  Well when an application connects to a database, the database obviously knows which host just connected and DPA keeps track of which queries came from that host.  It is this database client mapping that enables the 2 powerful features I'll talk about in my next post!  Wink, wink... It's pretty cool so check back for my third post.  :-)


  • Take a moment to review the mappings DPA and SAM found.
  • This should automagically discover most use cases.  But possible exceptions include:
    • Your applications don't connect directly to the database instance but rather proxies through something else like a middle tier service.  In this case, DPA knows the proxy or middle tier service as the client of the database.
    • Your applications use DHCP and SAM and DPA are resolving names through different DNS servers.

  • Since you can have multiple applications on a host, you can have multiple rows for a host.

  • Un-check any applications that you don't want a DPA resource added to.

  • If you need to edit a mapping, click the pencil icon in the actions column.PencilIcon.JPG
  • If you want to add an application view to SAM, click the Add Application Views button. AddApplicationViewsButton.JPG
  • After you click Next, you will see a confirmation screen with a "Finish" button.


wizard2-1.JPG

 


So now you're ready to find needles in the haystacks!  This is where "the magic" happens.

 

FeaturesDisplay

The Database Instance View provides greater detail of what your database is doing and how that's affecting your resources.  If you use AppInsight for SQL also, DPA creates a sub-view so it's easy to use both tools to analyze the database instance.

 

  • Advisors : The Instance View has a version of the Advisors resource similar to the one on the Summary View.  However, this one targets the instance as opposed to aggregating several like the one on the Summary View.  We discussed Advisors in my last post.  This one is similar but provides advisors for this instance only.

  • The Spark Line resources are intuitive.  You may be familiar with them from other products like Server Application Monitor (SAM) or Virtualization Manager.  These spark lines show resource metrics obtained by DPA.  Notice that while many of the metrics appear similar as ones you can get in SAM, they are usually not the same.  For the few are also collected by SAM, DPA polls more frequently, often once a minute as opposed to every 5.  So this data is more granular and helps you find needles in the haystack.  For example, your storage admins may typically only review metrics polled at 5 or 10 minute intervals.  Guess what, they won't see needles in the haystack like DPA does.  This is so important for sysadmins responsible for database performance because a 30 second disruption might be devastating to end users and be washed out in a 5 minute poll.
AppInsightAndDpaInstance.png

Pivoting Wait Time is one of my favorite troubleshooting techniques.  When you click into a Database Instance, you will see a more detailed and powerful analysis of wait time in the Database Response Time resource. 


This resource provides multidimensional performance analysis:

  • By Individual SQL queries
  • SQL Queries Aggregated by Wait Types
  • SQL Queries Aggregated by Applications


This is useful because sometimes the root cause is an individual query and sometimes it's several queries from an application or a resource constraint affecting all.


In the first pivot (1st image) of wait time, I can see that there is no one SQL that is the cause of most of the wait time because the queries with the most wait time are very small relative to all remaining queries. 


In the second pivot (2nd image), I've pivoted by wait type.  I can see that Memory and CPU are the most significant wait type.  That means real work is happening as opposed to waiting on storage or locks.  Now you may not know all the hundreds of wait types you'll see, but DPA does.


When it comes to wait types, click on the (2nd image) and DPA tells you (3rd image)

  • What the wait type means
  • Who typically resolves this wait type
  • Options for reducing waits of this type

 

In the third pivot (4th image), I've pivoted by application and see that "Ignite" is the application with the most significant waits and ".NET SQLClient Data Provider" is a distant second.  Note that ".NET SQLClient Data Provider" is the default name you will see if your .NET developer did not specify an application name in the database connection string. 


Now since I want to find something to tune, I pivot back to SQL and exclude "Remaining queries" by un-checking it (5th image).  Now I know the 5 queries causing me the most wait time and that is something we can work on.  Of course none of these examples show a lot of wait time.  I'm only doing this to demonstrate how I would use this resource. What if you wanted to know more about a query?  Click on it and you will see a nice report analyzing historical performance of this one query (6th image).

 

So with wait time analysis, AKA response time analysis, you can find needles in the haystack:

  • If your most significant wait types are related to storage sub-system performance, don't jump to the conclusion that you need faster storage.  Optimizing queries for storage may resolve performance issues. Or maybe a single database file needs lower latency, but the rest of the files are OK.
  • If a single application is suffering but other applications using the same database instance are not, then maybe your application's database needs special attention, not the whole instance.
  • Maybe a single query is causing grief to everyone but it's application is happy and thus off your radar.  For example, maybe someone has used Excel to query your database instance and allowing it to dominate database resources for an hour.


And just to reiterate, you don't need to know what all of those wait types mean.  When you don't know, click on the icon and DPA will tell you what it means, what can be done about it and who would typically do that.  This is so huge, I had to say it twice.  :-)


And because wait time analysis may be new to you, here's some information on the technique.

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pivot2-1.png

waittypeinfo2.JPG

pivot3-1.png

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Stay tuned!  My favorite features are coming up in the next post.

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The Database Performance Analyzer team has been very hard at work to provide you with some great features that will not only help you with your current monitoring; Database Performance Analyzer is now in the Amazon cloud.  This RC for DPA 9.1 is now available in the Customer Portal to download for customers on active maintenance through March 31, 2015.  The RC can be installed on your production system.  For any questions or comments, we'd love to hear your feedback at Database Performance Analyzer RC

 

What are these New Features, you ask?

  • DPA is in the Amazon Cloud
    • Amazon Machine Image (AMI) for DPA
    • Monitor Amazon RDS instances for Oracle and SQL Server
  • New Features
    • Annotations
    • Updated Oracle Plans
    • Exclude SQL statements
    • 64 bit installation
  • Updated Licensing - everything is instance based


DPA Available in Amazon

Now if you are thinking of moving to the cloud, DPA can move with you.

    • Deploy DPA in less than 2 minutes and you are ready to start monitoring.
    • You can monitor database instances that are both on the cloud and on-premise.
    • Monitor MSSQL Server, Oracle, DB2, SAP ASE (formally Sybase) running on Amazon's EC2 instances as well!!

 

You will have to wait a bit to see and enjoy this feature, it won't be available initially for RC, stayed tuned for dates.

 

Register Amazon RDS instances

You can now register a RDS instance, SQL Server and Oracle, just like on-premise.

register.png

RDS is Amazons version of a DBaaS or database as a service.  Because it is a service, we have had to adjust DPA so we can collect as much as the same as we do with on-premise instances.  There are a few items not available, mostly around metrics and alerts.  You can always explore and add additional metrics through Custom Metrics and additional alerts through Custom Alerts.  See the Administrators guide for more detail.

 

Annotations for Database Events

Have you ever wanted to track performance before and after you added an index or deployed code?  Now you can!  Add comments directly in the timeline within DPA, providing an easy method log changes to  SQL code, database configuration, and server resources for future reference. You can choose to have these annotations included when you select to mail the screen making it easy to share your findings.

annotations.png


Detailed Oracle Plan Display

The new Oracle plan display from the Plan text tab enhances your insights into the inner workings of a plan including Predicates and an updated tree display.  You can see that there are magnifying glass icons on the screen.  When that icon is selected, you will see the associated predicates as well as the type of predicate (access or filter).

 

oracleplan.png

 

Exclude SQL Display from Trend Charts

We are happy to bring our number one customer requested enhancement to a feature in DPA! With the Exclude SQL feature, you can mask SQL statements from the month and day trend views, letting you focus on less significant statements in the vertical bar graphs, that were previously dwarfed by one or more statements that take significantly more time.

Now that runaway SQL won't dominate your trend screen all you have to do is select a SQL from the legend on the right of the graph

exclude.png

Click the check box 'Exclude this SQL from Performance-side Trend charts' and the graph is refreshed without that pesky SQL.

sqlpropertiesexclude.png

Once one SQL is excluded you will know by looking at the bottom of the trend graph and seeing 'There are SQL Statements that may have been excluded from this chart. View Excluded SQL'


viewexcludedsqlstatement.png


 

Default Install is 64 Bit Software

I am very happy to announce that DPA now defaults to a 64 bit installation.  Never fear, if you still need a 32 bit installer, you just need to contact our support team!

 

Updated Licensing

Many of you have had to go through new processes that in some cases were a bit odd and confusing before DPA 9.1. We have addressed all this confusion by fully going to instance based licensing in DPA 9.1.  You will need to go to your portal to download new keys for the RC and later for GA.  However, all these keys are now in the portal which means no more calls to support to help find the key(s).

 

So the obvious next question is 'How I can download the RC'?

 

To download the DPA 9.1 RC, just log into the Portal to get your DPA RC 9.1 bits and your RC license keys here.

 

Again, if you have any questions or just want to chat about how great this RC is, head over to Database Performance Analyzer RC area.

 

Thank you very much for your participation.  We are looking forward to hearing from you!!

 

What's next for DPA?  You can review our What We Are Working on post AND this Beta blog post on DPA with Orion integration work.

If you missed the 11.5 beta, you may not have noticed a subtle, but important new feature in the Quality of Experience dashboard: Application Discovery.

Application Discovery allows QoE sensor to automatically detect ~1400 known applications as well as perform URL parsing for HTTP applications:

2-2-2015 1-36-30 PM.png

 

So why is this a big deal? Previously you had to define which applications to sniff for. Now besides simplifying the sensor process, in combination with the new alerting engine in 11.5, you can now detect and alert on malware or unwanted cloud applications:

 

2-2-2015 1-40-23 PM.png

 

 

Perhaps a little bit of cloud-storage provider activity is permissible in your environment, but if a couple gigs leave it could trigger data ex-filtration concerns? Done:

2-2-2015 1-45-42 PM.png

 

URL parsing also has interesting security implications. Perhaps there is new botnet C&C we want to validate our servers aren't checking in with. A quick report can give us piece of mind:

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To deploy QoE agents, simply define the endpoints you want to monitor as managed nodes. For DHCP client ranges, you would likely want to setup scheduled discoveries, and would need to add clients on a recurring basis. 

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Once managed, you could either deploy sensors to the endpoint, or monitor via SPAN/Tap. Would the constraint of clients having to be managed prevent you from deploying? Please let us know in the comments below. If you're not familiar with QoE agent deployment, check out the deployment guide here.

If you're not yet on 11.5 RC, and are on active maintenance- log into your Customer Portal to download.

Storage Manager (STM) and Storage Resource Monitor (SRM) v6.0 Release Candidates are now available in the SolarWinds Customer Portal for customers on Active Maintenance through April 1st, 2015. Release Candidates can be installed on your production systems and are fully supported. The Product Team is eagerly awaiting your feedback in the Storage RC Forum. The Product Team would also love your feedback about your storage environment on our short survey so we know how to plan our future releases. Before I go on, I want to take this space to thank all of our early UX feedback participants and all of our Beta participants for helping us to build the product you wanted! We couldn't have done it without you!

 

On to the meat!

 

 

What is Storage Resource Monitor?

 

In short, Storage Resource Monitor (or SRM for short) is SolarWinds storage monitoring product.

 

 

The details that matter for you probably depend on whether or not you are an existing Storage Manager (STM)/Storage Profiler (PL) customer or looking at a storage monitoring tool from SolarWinds for the first time.


For Folks Looking at a Storage Monitoring Tool from SolarWinds for the First Time


When you purchase SRM, you will get two modules - the SRM Orion Module and the SRM Profiler Module (formerly Storage Profiler). This will allow you to get the full breadth of monitoring of SAN and NAS devices that SolarWinds supports in one product offering. As we improve our offerings, you won't have to worry that you "chose the wrong platform" as you get them both! SolarWinds - keeping it simple. For the astute Product Blog reader, you may notice that this is very similar to how we are delivering Virtualization Manager as described in this post: VIRTUALIZATION MANAGER (VMAN) 6.2 RC IS NOW AVAILABLE!


For Existing Storage Manager and Storage Profiler Customers


As I hinted at in my original Beta blog post, if you are an existing Storage Manager (STM) and Storage Profiler (PL) customer, you are coming along for the ride. If you are on Active Maintenance through GA you will get the new SRM Orion Module as part of their Active Maintenace on STM and PL. The one change you will notice is that the STM/PL bits have been lightly rebranded as the Storage Resource Monitor Profiler Module. When you install the SRM Profiler Module v6 (or upgrade your existing STM or PL system) and apply your new v6 key, this will work the same as your previous STM/PL install albeit some improvements we made for v6.0. Note that nothing is being taken away from you with this release, you can keep running your STM/PL server as you do today and you will retain that functionality on upgrade to v6.0.

 

SRM Orion Module vs. SRM Profiler Module - What's the difference?

 

There are extensive differences in the core platforms of each module, which I'm not going to enumerate here. For the most part, they both contain features you would expect out of a monitoring tool - alerting, reporting, device collection - most done in different ways. However, I will call out two of the key differences worth noting:

 

Device Support

 

The SRM Profiler Module has about a 10+ year head start on the Orion Module in device support although the team is planning on closing that gap quickly (keep your eyes on the Storage Manager - What We Are Working On post for updates coming soon!). Right now, the SRM Orion Module supports the following devices:

  • EMC VNX / CLARiiON family
  • EMC VNX NAS Stand-alone Gateway / Celerra
  • Dell EqualLogic PS Series
  • NetApp E-Series (LSI)
  • IBM DS 3xxx / 4xxx / 5xxx
  • Dell MD3xxx
  • NetApp Filers running Data OnTAP 8 in:
    • 7-mode
    • Cluster-mode (aka Clustered Data OnTAP)

 

The SRM Profiler module device support is approximately 25 device families at last count and can be seen on SolarWinds website for more detail.

 

SolarWinds AppStack Integration

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It's hard to say more than has already been said in aLTeReGo great AppStack post All New AppStack Environment View and an Opportunity to Earn $100.00 Plus 2000 Thwack Points. With the AppStack Environment View, you can now see infrastructure performance and availability at every level in relation to the application and other supporting infrastructure. If our early feedback on this is any indication, this should greatly help reduce mean time to resolution for any IT Pro. Note that in order to use the SRM Orion Module with other AppStack enabled products, you will need the latest versions of those modules, notably SAM 6.2, VMAN 6.2, and WPM 2.2. As I mentioned in the Beta blog post, we really believe in a vision of Application-centric IT infrastructure management and the AppStack Environment view is the most tangible outcome of that vision. In the picture to the right, you can see SAN and NAS device information in the AppStack - brought to you by the SRM Orion Module.

 

Upgrade and Licensing Scenarios


So if you are a STM/PL customer today, you have a few options for upgrading

  • If:
    • You have device support or functional needs that span both modules
    • You have processes, reports, etc that depend on the old system and want to use that until you get used to the new platform.
  • Then:
    • Upgrade your STM/PL bits to v6.0, Deploy the SRM Orion Module standalone or on top your other Orion modules (e.g. NPM, SAM), integrate the two together
      • In this case, upgrade of STM/PL 6.0 and integration is required in order to share the one license key.
  • If:
    • You are a heavy "Orion shop" and all of your arrays are now supported by the new Orion module.
  • Then:
    • Deactivate your license key on your STM/PL Server. Decomission your STM/PL server. Deploy the SRM Orion Module standalone or on top your other Orion modules (e.g. NPM, SAM). Apply your v6 STM/SRM key on SRM Orion.
  • If:
    • You want to adopt the cumulative features we've added to the product (for example in 5.7 or HotFixes) or adopt the refactored virtualization support
  • Then:
    • Upgrade your STM/PL bits to v6.0. Ignore the SRM Orion Module. Apply your v6 STM/SRM key on SRM Profiler.


If you are installing the SRM Orion Module with the following Orion Modules, you will need to also upgrade those modules:

 

What About the Previous Storage Manager-Orion Integration Module?

 

One note for existing customers that had Storage Manager's previous lightweight integration module installed on Orion, the new SRM Orion Module consumes all of the previous functionality of that lightweight module and effectively replaces that module. It is recommended that you uninstall that module before proceeding with install of the SRM Orion Module.

 

Licensing

 

The shared SRM licensing is important and deserves some clarification. We strove to make the licensing flexible for existing and new customers. The first thing to understand is that both modules collect data independently. That said, if you are monitoring the same device from both modules, and you've enabled integration between them, the device will only be counted once against your license. An example should help:

 

2-3-2015 8-57-04 PM.pngIn the picture to the right, we have both the SRM Orion Module and the SRM Profiler Module deployed. Together they are monitoring 3 arrays: a Hitachi Data Systems device, a Dell MD3xxx device, and a NetApp Cluster-Mode device. In this case, the Dell MD3xxx is being monitored independently as far as data collection by both systems, but the integration and exchange of licensing information ensures that you are only charged for the MD3xxx's 100 disks one time. Therefore, for this system the license count math is:

  • HDS - 150 disks
  • MD3xxx - 100 disks
  • NetApp - 300 disks
  • Total - 550 disks

 

Finally, in this integration scenario, the single key needs to reside on the Profiler Module. For existing customers, it should be no muss, no fuss, as your key is already there an if you're online, your new version 6 key should update automatically at the next license sync. Alternatively, if you wanted to run either module stand-alone, you would activate the key directly on that module's server - both modules are not required to run if you only want to use one or the other.

 

There's obviously a bunch here that I haven't talked about, but that should address most of the frequently asked questions I've received so far. The team is eagerly awaiting your feedback in the RC Forum!


For about a year now, The Database Performance Analyzer (DPA) team has been planning how we'll integrate DPA into the Orion suite.  One of the first questions was, “where will DPA content be presented in Orion?”  And we felt that since Server Application Monitor (SAM) provides the Applications tab, DPA should add a Databases tab.  But since SAM also monitors databases, we decided the Databases tab should be a home for all things database whether they come from SAM or DPA.  In this post I’ll show you the Databases Summary view.  I hope you like what you see and invite you to consider joining The Beta which is open to customers with both DPA and Orion products, like SAM, in active maintenance. 


To try it out, please fill out this short survey.

 

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In this 3 part series, I'm going to tell you about :

 

NOTICE : This is BETA, so there is no promise that what you see here will be delivered as is.

 

FeaturesDisplay

DATABASES TAB IN ORION!  Based on conversations I've had with Solarwinds customers showing interest in DPA, those 4 words may be all they wanted to hear. Integrating DPA with Orion will add a "Databases" tab.  And it's not just for DPA!  We're making this a home for all of your database monitoring.  So if you also use SAM to monitor some databases, clicking the Databases tab will take you to the Databases Summary View which provides a dashboard style glance at database performance across your organization.  And if you also use AppInsight for SQL to monitor your databases, you can get to it from here too!

DatabasesSummaryView.png

Database Instances : This is one of the most prominent resources on the Databases Summary screen.  The red and yellow boxes summarize the number of critical issues and warnings detected.  They are also buttons that allow you to filter your list of database instances to reveal the instances with critical and/or warning status in either SAM or DPA.  DPA reveals KPIs on the right which indicate potential problems i.e. wait time, query advice, cpu, memory, disk and sessions.  SAM reveals it's status on the icon at the left of each row, and of course you get to see the node status like you are accustomed to in Orion.  So if you monitor a database instance with SAM and DPA, you get a health perspective and a performance perspective.  Clicking on one of the instances takes you to the Database Instance View.  We'll cover that view in my next postClicking on the KPIs from DPA on the right takes you to DPA's Database Instance View, which will be a sub-view if you are also monitoring with AppInsight for SQL.

DatabaseInstancesResource.JPG

Advisors : One of the most popular features for people that are new to DPA are the Advisors. Every instance monitored by DPA receives hourly analysis that provides information about queries that DPA thinks you should look at.  So this is a place you can find ideas for improving performance that you might not have noticed.  Advisors are either critical, warning or informational. When you click on an advisor message, it will open a detailed analysis in a new window.


They will tell you things like:

  • The most significant wait type.
  • Performance throughout the day.
  • When a query used a significant share of CPU or memory resources.
  • When a query has accounted for greater execution time in one hour vs another.
  • When an index may help.
  • When a query is being serviced by multiple execution plans. 
    This can cause significant performance issues as seen in the 2nd and 3rd image of this set.
SummaryAdvisors.JPGAdvisor.png AdvisorMultiplePlans.png

Instances With Highest Wait Time : Something that may be new you, is the concept of database wait time analysis AKA response time analysis.  Expert DBAs have used this technique for over a decade to accurately identify why queries are slow and what can be done about it. This isn't a dissertation on wait time so I've provided links to more detail below.  For now, let's just say you can ask a database instance why queries are slow, and it will tell you! DPA continuously polls database instances, recording all of those answers so it can produce this histogram that tells you which of your database instances are causing the most end user wait time over the past 2 weeks.


Information about "Response Time Analysis" AKA "Wait Time Analysis"


InstancesWithHighestWaitTime.JPG

 

In my next post, I'll show you some cool ways you can identify performance bottlenecks at the instance level.  And keeping with tradition, I'm saving the best for the last post!  Stay tuned.

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The Log & Event Manager team is pleased to announce the official release of LEM 6.1. Features included in this release:

  • NEW: Getting Started experience - configure LEM basic settings and easily walk through all the steps to get LEM up and running from one place
  • NEW: Rules Configuration Wizard - quickly enable LEM rules important to you with only a few clicks
  • Fixes and Improvements:
    • Improved IIS logging support - now more flexible and reliable on first configuration
    • Support for Windows 8.1 with workstation edition - no longer consuming Universal licenses
    • Support for SQL 2014 with SQL Auditor - audit SQL 2014 databases along with your 2012, 2008, and even 2005/2000 databases
  • New and updated connectors, as always!

 

Here's a handy video about adding rules with the new Rules configuration wizard:

 

For even more details, be sure to check out the LEM Release Candidate blog post: Check Out Quicker & Easier Config with the Log & Event Manager v6.1 Release Candidate - Now Available!

 

And, as always, the Release Notes with all the juicy details can be found here.

 

Download Information for LEM v6.1

 

Customers on active maintenance can download LEM v6.1 from their Customer Portal.

 

New to LEM and want to see what it's all about? Check out our product page and download a free (fully functional) trial right here on solarwinds.com.

The Virtualization Manager 6.2 Release Candidate (RC) is now available in the Customer Portal for customers on active maintenance through 04/01/2015.  Release Candidates can be installed on the production system you have running today and you can contact support with any Release Candidate issues you may encounter. The Product Management team would love to hear your feedback on the RC at the Virtualization Manager RC Forum on Thwack. We also ask that you fill out the following survey to provide us some information regarding your virtual environment.

The latest release of Virtualization Manager (VMAN) is full of new features, some of which were covered in the following post:

VIRTUALIZATION MANAGER 6.2 BETA 1

  • AppStack
  • Management Actions
  • Co-stop % Counter
  • Web based Reports
  • Web Based Alerts
  • Appliance password Improvements

 

 

Stand-Alone Virtualization Manager on Orion

With all the talk of integration with Orion, those customers that only own Virtualization Manager are probably asking "what about me?!!"  The answer is a stand-alone Orion Virtualization Manager Module that integrates with the VMAN virtual appliance.  This stand-alone module does not require NPM or SAM to be installed and provides access to all the goodness we have baked into VMAN for Orion such as baseline thresholds, web based reporting, advanced alerting, and role-based access control to name a few.


standalone_IVIM_with_VMan_integration_02.jpg




The goal of integration with Orion is not to simply have virtualization tabs in Orion but to improve on ease of use and reduce the time to resolution by providing tools available in Orion today.  Your feedback has made it clear that ease of use is paramount and we are addressing this by implementing features in the Orion platform which improve usability. Whether you are an administrator wearing many hats (network admin, sys admin, desktop support) and managing small virtual environment or a virtual administrator trying to get your arms around performance issues of thousands of VMs across multiple data centers, VMAN provides a simple and easy to use interface that will help you diagnose current issues and provide you with useful data to get ahead of future performance problems.


Hotfix Install Improvements

A new hotfix implementation method has been added to the Virtualization Manager appliance.   First Step - Navigate to https://ipaddress:5480/ where IPaddress is the address of the virtual appliance server management page. Once logged in select the SolarWinds Mgmt tab and choose HotFix install.  The hotfix install will let you browse to the install package and install the hotfix automatically.  It is that simple; no more logging into the appliance console and manually typing in command parameters to install a hotfix.

HF_install_progress.jpg


Fixed Issues

IssueCase Number
Virtual hosts are not linked properly to Orion nodes.666113, 735396, 706484, 676201
Host to vCenter mapping does not work correctly.712659
ESX host is displayed as down even when it is running.333590, 395330
Dashboard reports are created with incorrect time frames.566645
Labels cannot be removed from Virtualization Manager.694726
No latency information is collected for Hyper-V CSV datastores.-
Issues with local datastores.630786, 677971
The alert history of a configuration items gets cleared incorrectly.642124
Incorrect information is displayed in Virtualization Manager about connected media devices.576193
Issue with data segments not being displayed on Virtualization Manager charts.585989
Incorrect values are displayed as VM Tools status.610075
When multiple trends are added to a widget, a flat line is displayed for some trends.621536
Sorting on the Trend widget does not work properly.621811
Issues with filtering results by VMware Tools status in Virtualization Manager.625185, 625346
The fitment widget report does not work with custom Resource Containers.619730



Don't forget to leave your RC Feedback at Virtualization Manager RC Forum on Thwack.

The Web Performance Monitor (WPM) 2.2 Release Candidate 1 (RC1) is now available! To participate in the RC, simply fill out the survey in the link below to get started.

 

 

 

 

Improvements in WPM 2.2 include all the new features we mentioned in our beta blog post, as well as:

 

 

Support of SolarWinds AppStack Resource:

Our beta post mentioned how excited we are about WPM 2.2's integration with the new SolarWinds AppStack. This integration will power an additional new feature in WPM - the AppStack Resource. With this resource, you'll have the same easily digestible view of your environment right in your transaction details page, but with the focus only on those resources associated with that transaction. This view, powered with our new step dependencies, means that you'll have transaction diagnostics as well as statistics on resource dependencies all in in the same place. With all this information together on one page, you'll be able to diagnose issues in transactions more easily than ever. Check out the screenshot below and make sure to download WPM RC1 to get started with it.

MiniStack2.PNG

 

Various bug fixes:

  • Internet Explorer cache growth issues
  • HTTP500 errors on Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Top 10 Transactions/Steps by Duration resource errors
  • Event summary time displayed errors
  • WPM service unexpected crashes

 

Release candidates are fully supported and are made available to existing customers prior to formal release in order to generate feedback on new features. Take the survey through the button below to make sure you qualify. If you have any problems with the RC1, you can file a ticket with Support just as you would for any GA version of the product.

 

And don't forget to leave any feedback you have in the RC Forum!

 

 

- the WPM product team

Update: NCM 7.4 Beta2 has been made available.

 

We have completed another bulk of the development effort and are now focused on testing the latest enhancements of Network Configuration Manager (NCM); NCM v7.4 Beta is available. This is your chance to install the latest version and provide feedback on the new features and fixes. Providing feedback during the beta is the best way to ensure that your feedback will be incorporated in to the release. To participate, simply fill out this survey and you will be sent the download links for the Beta. Remember, Betas are open to customers with valid maintenance contract, cannot be installed in production, and you cannot upgrade the Beta to any other future versions.

 

signup.png

 

New features in Beta2 (topics in alphabetical order):

  • Auditing Improvements
    • Track username of user who made a config change (for real-time change detection)
  • Compiance Reports and Remediation
    • Automatic remediation of policy violations (optional).
    • Execute remediation script for all blocks in violation (e.g. interfaces).
    • Use Config Change Templates for remediation.
  • Config Change Approval
    • Two-step approval (optional).
  • Device Lifecycle Management
    • New report listing End-of-Life devices
    • Automatically assign End-of-Life information based on part number.
  • Device Template Assistant integrated in Web UI
  • Miscellaneous Web UI and Usability Improvements
    • Update or cancel only selected inventory transfers.
    • A number of small usability improvements

 

Content of Beta1:

  • Web-based reporting
  • Web-based alerting
    • Enhancement: Execute the NCM action on a different node.
  • Miscellaneous Web UI and Usability Improvements
    • Be able to quickly add/remove a lot of nodes to/from NCM at the same time.
    • Add SWQL filtering for drill-down charts on NCM summary page.
    • Make grids match browser window size.
    • Export config file from Web UI.
    • Ability to re-execute items on transfer status page.
    • Keep history for the transfer status page.
    • Notify requestor when his/her request has been approved.
    • Option to exclude devices with no config changes from the config change report email notification
    • Improved EoL/EoS summary resource
  • Improvements of Compliance Reports
    • Better navigation when inspecting violations.
    • Config block not found does not mean policy violation.
    • Update only selected policy reports.
    • Disable a policy report.
    • Copy/duplicate a policy or rule.
    • Delete all policies and rules associated with a report at once.
    • Policy violations summary resource is customizable.
    • Export violation details with the compliance report.
  • Security Improvements
    • Report vulnerabilities for Cisco IOS
    • The default NCM Role is None for a new Orion account.
  • New config change templates out of the box
  • Store device templates in the database

 

Inventory reports use Orion web reporting UI

The reporting system of Orion Platform brings a lot of improvements to NCM inventory reports.

  • Modern UI shared with other Orion products
  • Wide range of cusomization possibilities; both information and formatting.
  • No need to RDP to the NCM server

 

Web-Reports-01.png

 

Web-Reports-02.PNG

 

Web UI improvements

Now you can add nodes to NCM without leaving the main node management page:

 

Add-to-NCM.png

 

The pie charts on NCM summary page can be filtered now; this is useful e.g. for Juniper devices that don't follow Cisco's model of startup and running configuration.

 

Chart-Filtering.png

 

You can re-execute transfers easily on the Transfer Status page. The records do not get overwritten in case you are interested in the history.

 

Transfer-Reexecute.png

 

The EoL/EoS summary resource presents the data in a better structured way. When you click on a part number, the EoL/EoS detailed grid filtered for that particular part number is opened.

 

EOS-Resource.PNG

 

Compliance reports are easier to use

A few simple but useful improvements:

 

  1. Update only selected report(s)
    Compliance-Update-Selected.png
  2. Enable/disable a report
    Compliance-Enable-Disable.png
  3. Policy violations resource is customizable
    Compliance-Resource-Customizable.PNG
  4. When a rule searches in a block rather than in the full config, you have the option not to trigger violation if the whole config block is not present.
    Compliance-Block-Not-Found.png

 

NCM reports vulnerabilities for Cisco IOS

See what vulnerabilities exist for your Cisco IOS nodes. Be alerted when there is a new vulnerability. Acknowledge, remediate, or ignore.

 

Vulnerabilities-Report.PNG

 

Vulnerabilities-Resource.png

 

Vulnerabilities-Manage.png

 

Device templates are managed on the web

No need to distribute the device templates across all your pollers and keep them in sync.

 

Device-Templates.PNG

 

signup.png

To receive updates on the DameWare roadmap, JOIN thwack and BOOKMARK this page.

We launched a new version of DameWare in December which provided a tight integration with Web Help Desk and we are in a new year and the team is already hard at work on the next release.  Below highlights the next thing we are focused and working on.

 

  • Active Directory and Single Sign On (SSO) Integration with Central Server
    • Currently you can export a list of users from Active Directory and import them into DameWare Central Server, but you still have to maintain user changes and credentials
    • The upcoming formal integration will allow you to:
      • Define one or more AD Servers, specify the AD Groups that your AD account must belong to in order to have access to authenticate with Central Server
      • Single sign on so when you are logged into your machine, which is authenticated against the domain and your account belongs to an AD Group which has rights to use DameWare, when you launch Mini Remote Control or Remote Support it will automatically authenticate you against Central Server and log you in.


PLEASE NOTE:  We are working on these items based on this priority order, but this is NOT a commitment that all of these enhancements will make the next release.  We are working on a number of other smaller features in parallel.   If you have comments or questions on any of these items (e.g. how would it work?) or would like to be included in a preview demo, please let us know!

chrispaap

Patch Manager 2.1 Beta 1

Posted by chrispaap Jan 21, 2015

Patch Manager 2.1 is now Generally Available and available for download in the customer portal for all customers on active maintenance!!!!! All features described in the Beta post along with multiple bug fixes were addressed in this release.

 

 

The team at SolarWinds has been hard at work at producing the next release of Patch Manager with some great new features. It is my pleasure to announce Patch Manager 2.1 Beta which is packed full of features and is open to Patch Manager customers currently on active maintenance. To try it out please fill out this short survey and provide us your feedback in the Patch Manager Beta forum.

 

PaM_Beta_button.jpeg

 

Automated 3rd Party Patching and Publishing

Patch Manager currently offers 3rd party patch/updates through our 3PUP catalog so that administrators can simply update their products using Patch Manager as they would for Windows Patches.  In Patch Manager 2.1 we have introduced Automated Third Party Patching and Publishing which will save administrators time by automating the publishing of 3rd party updates to WSUS in the same way Microsoft updates distribution points.  This reduces the number of touches and time required to publish the 3rd party updates by allowing the local Microsoft WSUS server to automatically download 3rd party patch content on a scheduled basis and automatically publish.  An additional option can be set which automatically approves certain patches based on criteria (typically severity) and provide a scope for automatic approval. For a complete list of supported 3rd party updates check out Table of third party patches - updated 1/21/2015Follow the steps below for enabling and configuring Auto-Publish of 3rd Party Updates to WSUS.

 

Opening the Auto-Publish of 3rd Party Update Wizard

In the Patch Manager Console select Administration and Reporting - Software Publishing - Right click and choose Auto-Publish of 3rd Party Updates to WSUS.  Alternatively you can select Auto-Publish of 3rd Party Updates to WSUS in the actions panel after highlighting Software Publishing.

 

3rd party3.JPG

Selecting Products and Specify WSUS

Select the WSUS server that will be publishing the 3rd party update and select the software to have published.

3rd party.JPG

Schedule

The schedule screen allows you to select your Auto-Publishing schedule. You may choose to have a set period of time to publish as a schedule task or auto-publish after every synchronization. In addition email notifications can be configured on this screen as well.

 

schedule.jpg

Summary

 

Summary.jpg

Scheduled Tasks

Once done, you can review and edit you auto-publish task by selecting Scheduled Tasks under Software Publishing

scheduled tasks.jpg


 

 

 

Report Enhancements

Patch Manager contains volumes of data and environment metrics that can be reported. An important aspect of Patch Management is the ability to perform essential reporting of your environment for compliance and remediation purposes.  We have improved the out-of-the-box reporting by replacing dated reports with relevant and more intuitive reporting options. In addition the following reports have been added or modified based on demand from the Thwack user community.

 

ReportLocationInformation

Custom hardware report

Configuration Management Reports - Computer (System Information) - Custom hardware report

You no longer have to build a hardware report from scratch. The Custom hardware report can be configured using any of the existing 19 available data sources with each source having multiple fields.

HW Report.JPG

HW Report 2.JPG

Installed programs and feature basic

Configuration Management Reports - Installed Programs and Feature Basic (MS Products Omitted)

The default Installed Programs and Feature Basic (MS Products Omitted) report can easily be modified to omit MS products specific to your environment.

MS Office Omited.JPG

Approved updates status counts by WSUS server and update source

WSUS Reports - Windows Server Update Services Analytics Approved updates status counts by WSUS server and update source

Provides the WSUS server name, update source and total sum of approved updates in the following categorizations:

  • Approved not installed
  • Approved unknown
  • Approved downloaded
  • Approved failed
  • Approved installed
  • Approved pending reboot
  • Approved total

Computer update status - locally published updates

WSUS Reports - Windows Server Update Services Analytics - Computer update status - locally published updatesThis Out-of-the-box report identifies all updates that do not have Microsoft Update as a source

Computer update status with aggregate counts of install state for approved updates

WSUS Reports - Windows Server Update Services Analytics - Computer update status with aggregate counts of install state for approved updatesThis report provides an aggregate count all approved updates that are applicable to a particular computer/server and in which phase of install.

Computer Update status counts by classification for approved - not installed

WSUS Reports - Windows Server Update Services Analytics - Computer Update status counts by classification for approved - not installedProvides a list of all approved updates that have not been installed on a computer.

Computer Update status - Approved updates with ID and Revision

WSUS Reports - Windows Server Update Services Analytics - Computer Update status - Approved updates with ID and RevisionProvides a comprehensive report of all approved updates and their status as it pertains to each computer/server.


It is important to note that all Out-Of-The-Box reports are configurable with hundreds of data sources and fields. Customization of reporting has been greatly enhanced in Patch Manager 2.1 with the addition of Cross-Datasource Reporting. This provides users with the ability to write reports without worrying about the specific data sources hampering real creativity within the reporting engine. 


Logging Enhancements

We have enhanced the log collection functionality in Patch Manager by centralizing and bundling of logs which will assist in the troubleshooting of Patch Manager.  By extending the existing Orion diagnostic tool an administrator can now collect the relevant logs and review for diagnostic evaluation or submit to support.  This eliminates having to browse to individual directories to gather separate logs.

Diagnostics.JPG


 

Windows 2012 R2 and Windows 8.1 Support

Windows 2012 R2 and Windows 8.1 are now OS options when selecting computer properties.

new OS.JPG


Notification Bar Enhancements

A banner notification has been added to the web console to notify the administrator that new patches are available.

 

Additional Computer Group Scoping Options

You know have 3 three additional grouping options to allow management and task targeting at subnet, AD organizational unit and/or site levels.This provides granular device grouping options depending on the task at hand when creating computer groupings.


Scoping optionsHeader 2
IP Subnet - You now have the option to target a subset of machines based on a specific subnet.

 

1.png

Active Directory Organizational Unit (OU) -  Patch Manager administrators are able to target all computers within an Active Directory Organizational Unit.options.JPG
Active Directory Site -  You can now group computers by Active Directory Sites as a possible element in routing requests to automation servers. Larger environments with multiple Patch Manager servers require automation routing rules to assign tasks to specific Patch Manager servers based on the IP of the machine in question.

 

OU2.JPG

 

That's it for now.  Don't forget to sign up for the Beta and provide your feedback in the Patch Manager Beta forum


The Log & Event Manager (LEM) team has been hard at work on a release intended to make your lives easier. We know you're swamped and decided to take a little time to make it faster to get LEM up and running and configure rules related to problems you're interested in solving without looking through a big list and clicking, clicking, clicking.

 

Getting Started with LEM: New & Improved!

GSWidgetOpsCenter.PNG

 

We had a handy dandy getting started widget in LEM before, but we've taken it one step further and glued together those steps into one location rather than sending you on a bit of a wild goose chase. Now, from the Ops Center Getting Started widget you can:

  • Quickly configure Basic Settings needed for LEM to be up and running - email server settings and directory service server (for groups and/or authentication) configuration
    • As you click "Next" to move through the wizard, each step will be tested and verified. If you see a pause, that's what's going on. If there's a problem, LEM will let you know.

BasicSettingsWizard.PNGBasicSettingsFailureSummary.PNG

  • Quickly access the Add Node Wizard including links to the agent installers and the full syslog scan to configure connectors automatically

GSNodeWidget.PNG

  • Use the NEW Add Rules Wizard to add rules for different areas of interest (more on that later)
  • And, view all of the quick training videos from within the LEM console!

GSAdvancedTools.PNG

 

New Feature: Add Rules Quickly by Category

 

Our next big addition is the new Add Rules wizard. From Build > Rules or from the Ops Center Getting Started widget/wizard flow, you can launch the fancy new wizard. This wizard will configure for you ALL rules that match a given category that can be configured easily - no active responses, just email and "infer alert" or "create incident" actions (we'll look at improving to add more active response choices in the future). This should be MUCH MUCH faster than all that cloning you had to do before. As a part of this, we've also created a new "General Best Practices" subcategory in each parent category - if you're not sure where to get started, these categories will get you a wide swath of the most common rules enabled.

AddRulesWizard.PNG

          Select each category of interest

AddRulesWizardSubcategory.PNG

          View and select subcategories, including the new General Best Practice subcategory

AddRulesWizardEmail.PNG

          Specify email server settings (if not already configured), and email recipients (even add contacts from within the wizard if they don't exist)

AddRulesWizardFinish.PNG

          Clicking "Finish" will clone, select the right users, and enable the selected rules all in one step!

 

We've also revamped our quick rules training video to include how to use the new wizard and a fast example of building a rule by hand:

 

 

 

Fixes, Fixes, Fixes

 

As always, we've fixed a bunch of customer issues and included notable minor improvements. Included:

  • Improvements to our IIS coverage - if you've struggled with which fields to configure, or IIS not working right after you configure it, this is for you!
  • Support for Windows 8.1 with Workstation Edition - if your 8.1 workstations are coming up as servers and pulling Universal instead of Workstation nodes, this will help
  • Lots of new connectors! As always you can download connectors out of band to releases, but you'll get them automatically with the upgrade, too.

 

Sounds Great - Where do I Download? Where do I Ask Questions?

 

Easy: from the Customer Portal!

 

If you've got any questions, head on over to the Log & Event Manager Release Candidate thwack forum and let us know.

 

As always, feel free to post here and/or contact me directly with any feedback.

Here at SolarWinds we've been working overtime on another update to Web Performance Monitor (WPM), only a few short months after our release of WPM 2.1. I am pleased to announce that the result of our efforts, WPM 2.2, has reached beta status. Now is your chance to install the latest version and provide us your feedback on the newest features. We remain committed to constantly improving WPM and your beta participation and feedback guarantees that we are making improvements that are beneficial to our users.

 

To participate in the beta, simply fill out this survey and we will send you the download links as soon as they’re ready.

 

 

Below is an overview of the newest features you’ll see in WPM 2.2.

 

1. New AppStack Integration

The AppStack environment is a new feature that we’re very excited about here at SolarWinds. It provides users an overview of their entire environment in a single, easily digestible view – from storage arrays all the way up to the applications consuming the data they house. As a part of the AppStack formula, transactions managed by WPM as well as their dependencies can easily be viewed and any issues diagnosed.

 

To give an example of where the magic of AppStack + WPM would shine, let's say you get an alert that your WPM transaction has failed and users are beginning to call with complaints. From the AppStack view below, you can quickly glance to determine if the issue lies in your storage, server, web application, virtualization, or elsewhere. Knowing this allows you to focus your remediation efforts right away, decreasing the time to resolution.

 

Check out a recent blog post for more information about our new AppStack and the screenshot below of what you can expect to see.

AppStackView.png

2. New Web-Based Alerting

By popular demand, web-based alerting is now ready to go with WPM. To be clear, for us that doesn’t mean simply moving alerts to the web. With WPM 2.2, you’ll see a whole new alerting engine built from the ground up. The update won’t affect the alerting functionality you’re used to; instead, it will give you increased functionality and control when creating transaction alerts. All said, that means you’ll be able get more out of your existing WPM transactions by making the data it generates more actionable. Lots of functionality with this so you'll have to dig in to see more, but a sneak peek of the UI is below and check out a recent blog post that gives an overview of the new features.

WebBasedAlerts.PNG

3. Step Dependencies

WPM 2.1 brought you dependencies at the transaction level. That meant that you were able to set resource dependencies to transactions as a whole. However, we started to see that users had different dependencies on the various, individual steps of a transaction. With WPM 2.2, we’re letting you take that one step farther (pun intended) - you’ll now be able to drill down even deeper by setting dependencies on the transaction step level.

 

A quick example. Let's say you have a web transaction that includes various dependencies across the different steps of the transaction - e.g. you're an e-commerce site with a dependency in the first step on checking inventory from an inventory system, a dependency in the second step on routing shipping through a shipping system, and a dependency in the final step on posting a sale to a sales system. Before step dependencies, all three of these systems would have been dependent at the transaction level. That meant if any single step of the transaction were to fail, you would get a warning that any one of those systems might be a potential cause for the transaction failure - you wouldn't know where to start. Now, with step dependencies, WPM 2.2 can tell you based on which step of the transaction failed the exact dependency that is the root cause. The result is more focused alerting, thus a more focused response and a quicker time to resolution.

 

This granularity of control is why we're excited to provide step dependencies and why we think they'll be valuable to our users. Check out a screenshot below where you can see individual transaction steps on the left and a VM node step dependency for the first step.

StepDependencies2.PNG

So there you have it – WPM 2.2. Be sure to fill out the beta survey to be included and if you have any feedback, leave it here. We’re working hard on making WPM better and your beta participation and feedback goes a long way in our being able to do that.

 

 

- the WPM product team

To receive updates on the WHD roadmap, JOIN thwack and BOOKMARK this page

 

We are currently in the planning phases for the next release, based on user feedback we are investigating following areas. As we move forward we will update this post to reflect what we are working on short-term.  If there is anything missing or arguments to move things up, vote on product ideas or post a comment.

 

After release of Web Help Desk v12.2, we are now busily working on some new features and enhancements to the product. Here is a preview of some the features:

 

  • Parent-Child relationship
  • Change Management, for example
    • "Change request" ticket type to better distinguish between service requests and changes
    • Ability to report on changes
    • Automation of change requests
    • Note: We are still in planning phase and you can influence priorities and change management feature in WHD now! Please vote for more change management features here in this survey and comment in this forum
  • Log export for easier troubleshooting
  • Asset Reporting
    • Purchase Order reporting
    • Parts reporting
  • NPM integration improvements
  • Ability to export reports to Excel
  • Ticket Approvals from Tech interface
  • iOS Application improvements

 

PLEASE NOTE:  This is NOT a commitment that all of these enhancements will make the next release.  We are working on a number of other smaller features in parallel.   If you have comments or questions on any of these items (e.g. how would it work?) or would like to be included in a preview demo, please let us know!

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