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Orion Platform 2020.2 - Performance & Scalability Improvements

OrionRegistered Platform 2020.2  - Performance & Scalability Improvements

In addition to the multitude of features delivered in The OrionRegistered platform 2020.2 such as centralized upgrades, significant performance improvements have also been gained across the platform and its modules.  When combined with improvements to the install/upgrade experience and Increased scalability for both Network Performance Monitor and Server & Application monitor it offers a platform that is more powerful, more scalable, and more reliable.


A number of key areas for improvement are included when considering the performance improvements included in the Orion platform 2020.2 *

  • Improving the legacy website.
  • Improving poorly performant resources
  • Optimizing expensive queries.
  • New Angular based dashboard system

This strategy to improve website performance covered multiple facets of Orion. Classic dashboards aren’t going away anytime soon, It is important to make them as responsive as possible and so we have invested in optimizing the most frequently used pages and resources. There are limits to how WebForms and other server-side rendering technologies perform.  For that reason, a new UI tech stack was used for modern dashboards

Note: Performance gains will vary. Environment variables such as database performance, Choice of browser, browser add- ons and client machine specs will impact performance. 

Eliminating 'Cold Start'

When improving the performance of the legacy website we started with the 1st page users typically see, the login page.

In testing, eliminating 'Cold Start' delivered a 96% improvement! *

“Cold Start” is similar to starting your car in the morning. It will take some time to warm up after being left idle for an extended period. In some cases for Orion this could be more than 20 seconds! While still faster than warming up your car, it can feel like an eternity when looking at a blank page! For those who want more detail here, we have made some changes under the hood as to how the Orion IIS Application Pool recycling is managed.

Hnet-image (6).gif

2020.2     Vs     2019.4

Summary and Node Details Views

From there we focused on the most used views. Load times of the Summary and Node Details Views along with the All Reports and All Active Alerts pages have been improved

Summary view optimization has resulted in an average 35% improvement in our lab tests.*

2020-05-07 10_29_32-Orion Summary Home.png

2019.4     Vs    2020.2

All Active Alerts & All Reports

Although not as fast as an engine management indication on a car's dashboard, The Active alerts page was on average 67% faster in testing.*

2020-05-06 12_20_52-All Reports.png

2019.4     Vs    2020.2

Modern Dashboards

Modern dashboards have been created with performance in mind. A simple comparison between a modern dashboard and classic summary view using the same data for 3 widgets shows a marked improvement. *

2020-05-07 10_38_27-Thwack Demo.png

2020.2     Vs    2019.4

Additional Improvements

Install & Upgrade

The install and upgrade process is a critical component to the performance improvements that were made as a part of the 2020.2 release. These enhancements specifically aim to reduce the downtime needed to install or upgrade your environment.  As a part of these efforts, a significant investment was given to optimizing the configuration wizard itself. While we don’t want to get to far into the technical details, these adjustments range from revamping the database creation phase to the compilation of the website.  Along with other boosts such as parallelization of the config wizard tasks, the combination of these updates resulted in a drastic reduction in the total run time of the configuration wizard.

In addition to these changes, there was also special attention given to the upgrade process. A new ability to Pre-Stage your environment directly from the web console alleviates administrative overhead and provides A GATEWAY TO YOUR FASTEST UPGRADE EVER!


Other improvements have been delivered which are not visually demonstrable but which are know to contribute to overall page load times. These range from optimizing SWIS queries to more effective caching of query data to changing the render method of selected classic widgets. *

The sum of all these changes should have a noticeable impact on the performance of your Orion platform.*


Network Performance Monitor

Network Performance Monitor (NPM)

With this release, NPM can now monitor up to one million elements per Orion Platform instance! Our customers are likely aware of the previous maximum per-instance capacity of 400k elements as of the 2018.2 release. We couldn't be happier with the additional value this expanded scale will provide specifically to our enterprise customers who were facing difficult decisions around what to monitor as they reached previous capacity limitations. As of the 2020.2 release, we've increased the maximum load that can be placed on a properly resourced NPM instance by 250%! The Orion platform has never been better equipped to comprehensively monitor global-scale environments with device-level precision. 

Server & Application Monitor

Server & Application Monitor (SAM)

In SAM, with our release we now support an upper limit of 550,000 Component Monitors! For those of you who have been longtime SAM customers, you know that our previous limit for a SAM installation was 150,000 Component Monitors, so we are proud of the improvement that the team has delivered. In general, you should see better scale especially, if you choose to use our improved WinRM monitoring support in our application templates. You will see more predictable WMI monitoring query resource consumption, that will help reach ever greater scale. In addition to the increase to 500,000 Components for a single SAM installation, you'll see that for SAM node-licensed customers each included additional polling engine (not the main) will now support up to 40,000 Component Monitors. This will help those larger installations to use less server resources, which we are excited to see the ways it will simplify your deployment. 

*Performance improvements of Orion Platform 2020.2 verified in SolarWinds lab against the previous version. Actual improvements may vary.

  • I had already started making mentions to my team about us upgrading to 2020.2 once it goes GA, this news about performance improvements is always welcome.

  • The webpage coming up faster all by itself is a huge improvement... sometimes it seems like the VM is asleep or something.


  • "you'll see that for SAM node-licensed customers each included additional polling engine (not the main) will now support up to 40,000 Component Monitors",,

    What will be the approach for older licensing model ( ALX + Polling engines), does the licensed APE, will also have the same capability to monitor 40K, Are any restrictions applies here ??

  • "As of the 2020.2 release, we've increased the maximum load that can be placed on a properly resourced NPM instance by 250%"

    However, I do not see any change in POLLING RATE on the Admin> Details> Polling Engines page.

    So does this mean my guitar amplifier now goes past 11 all the way to 25?

  •   I don't see any change to my Polling Rate as well. I was hoping the POLLING RATE percentage would decrease if it an instance is able to handle more nodes. If it doesn't then this seems like a red herring of improvement. 

    @tony.johnson Could you point me to more documentation about this? Maybe I just need my polling engines to be "properly resourced?"

  •   when we say 'NPM can now monitor up to one million elements per Orion Platform instance' is it like number of elements supported per polling engine is increased OR total number of polling engines which can be used in an Orion instance is increased. If its the number of elements per polling engine then what is the maximum supported count. Same way in case of SAM components also.

    Could you please clarify on this. Also will this be effective for upgrade of existing environments also.

  •  The total number of polling engines remains at 100, it is the total number of elements/components per poller which has increased. These numbers are only valid for anyone running the 2020.2 version regardless of it being an upgrade or a new install. here you can find the guidelines for environments sizes small to x-large. I will clarify the expected behavior for the polling rate you are seeing.

  •  Thanks, Can you please tell me what is the current number of elements/components supported per poller in 2020.2. I am not seeing anything like that in the documents, not sure if I missed any.

  •  The number of elements/components per polling engine remains the same which is 12k/~10k respectively. Stacking options are also still valid. It is the ceiling which has been increased. For example, to achieve the previous limit of 400,000 elements would require a minimum of 33 additional polling engines. As part of 2020.2, we have increased the ceiling to 1,000,000 elements which can be achieved using a minimum of 83 additional polling engines.  As has been described above by   the polling rate is not influenced by these limits in any way. The limit of 100 additional polling engines also remains as there are instances where users may not reach the element/component limits but need a large number of polling engines.

  • @tony.johnson

    That makes a lot more sense, Tony. Thanks for clearing that up.