2 Replies Latest reply on Feb 4, 2010 11:26 AM by ecklerwr1

    2 Feature Requests - Toolbar / Graphs


      Just some friendly input on some aspects of NPM that could use some Solarwinds love.


      1. Toolbars - The way they are implemented in the NPM CMS is not very evolved. The tremendous amount of information NPM is able to collect is grossly beyond the ability of the toolbar to have any hope of presenting.

      I think the usability of the toolbar would be vastly improved if it had a much more flexible menu structure that allowed administrators to design a toolbar with drop down menus/sub menu's.

      Ok somebody has to be with me on this! :p

      2. Graphics - While i know you use a 3rd party widget to generate the graphics i hope that doesn't rule out any interest in improving on what you already have. The issue I have is space. Screen real estate and presentation control.

      Example 1.

      On the left you have the original from our portal. Highlighted in yellow is the wasted space that we have no ability to control. On the right you have a mocked up version of the same graph without the space. Looks to me like about 25% Wasted space.

      Example 2.

      Additional space is lost by borders defined by the NPM CMS that the user does not have the ability to control.

      All of this has an impact on how much useful information can be presented on a screen without the need for scrolling.

      Example 3.

      This example illustrates both the challenges and leg work required to work around some of these limitations.


      Before i describe this I would to say that not only this view but all the custom views that had to be hand made to present the necessary information for this customer could and should be accessible from a single drop down subcategory. (Ideally what items are on the menu should be managed by what groups the user is associated with in the cms not custom toolbars for every user or view)

      These graphs are not hyper linked to the custom view component because of the sheer amount of hacking involved. So it is not possible for a user to click on a graph and veiw a specific period in more detail. This is an unfortunate limitation we had to accept given the time constraints involved in creating this solution.

      I may point out that this image presented here is actually cropped and there are several more servers depicted in the actual view. Im not sure how many times its necessary to show what version of NPM you are running but again it wastes space and its not possible to remove it and reclaim the space.

      I know a CMS does not evolve over night. The NPM interface has evolved extensively since we started using the suite more than 6 years ago, especially in the last two years. With the prevalence of CMS solutions out there such as Joomla (Which i am fond of) I hope Solarwinds gets some inspiration to enhance the NPM portal presentation, content & user management capabilities. Many of these CMS's have found great ways of addressing many of the limitations the NPM portal has.

      With regard to the Graphs. Well its a third party app you use so im not sure exactly what your options are but since i brought this up about 2 years ago I thought it was time to do it again :D

      I hope this information is useful and I am looking forward to the next NPM release. With some luck the syslog will be getting its much overdue re-working.