Link to webinar recording: https://learning.intersystems.com/course/view.php?id=623
Thank you for your interest in this webinar!
Please submit questions about the content of the webinar as comments below this article.
The webinar covers two topics: monitoring message activity and volume and monitoring disk space. I summarize and motivate the topics in the following two sections. The information in this webinar and post applies to the Ensemble, Health Connect, and HealthShare products. For simplicity, I am only going to refer to Ensemble in this post.
1) Monitoring Message Activity and Volume:
Ensemble’s activity volume and monitoring package allows you to monitor message activity for business services, processes, and operations in your productions. If configured to do so, Ensemble will capture message activity statistics for each component every 10 seconds, every hour, and every day and put these values into three corresponding tables. Ensemble also provides a prebuilt dashboard to let you view these statistics. Even more importantly though, we encourage you to use the statistics tables to create your own dashboards and write your own reports. Accordingly, the activity volume statistics empower you to make short- and long-term insights about message traffic that are specific to your organization’s needs and implementation.
Ensemble’s activity volume statistics are valuable for many reasons. Some of the most salient reasons are:
- Activity volume statistics help you understand and monitor system health.
- The statistics illuminate which components are the busiest, which take the longest to process messages, and which have the highest variability in processing time.
- Long-term storage of message statistics allows for easy historic reporting.
- Ensemble stores the information in three different tables, which allows for variable granularity in your reports.
To enable the activity volume statistics, follow the steps in the webinar, or follow the steps in documentation.
- It is important to setup a purge schedule for these statistic tables. The 10-seconds table can grow quickly and it is unlikely that you want to keep that level of granularity for much longer than a few weeks. For further discussion on this point, watch the webinar and read documentation.
- You can capture activity for a particular set of components in a production or for all of the components in a production (for many implementations it makes sense to capture activity for every component).
2) Monitoring Disk Space:
Monitoring free disk space is critical for most successful deployments of Ensemble, Health Connect, or HealthShare. If you fill up your disk(s), your production(s) comes to a halt, which means you stop processing messages, which is probably a serious problem for your organization. Therefore, it is important to proactively monitor your disk space to make sure that you have a healthy amount of space left on your disks. A healthy amount of free disks space allows your message traffic to grow over time and gives you time to plan if you need to make changes to your environment or your purging schedules.
Of course, you can monitor disk space using other monitoring tools that run outside of Ensemble, but you can also monitor your disks inside Ensemble, which often gives you more control and more options. Whichever approach you take, it is important that you proactively monitor your free disk space to ensure the disks are not running out of space.
In the webinar, I use a custom task, originally created by Randy Pallotta, to monitor disks on my machine. As I explain in the webinar, it is important to monitor the disks where the productions are storing messages and also monitor your journal disks. A typical live environment can have a primary, backup, and disaster recovery system and you need to monitor the disks on each of those systems. Of course, different deployments can have different disk monitoring strategies, but in general, the strategy should involve monitoring your main disks and your journal disks. Watch the webinar to learn more about monitoring strategy and the custom monitoring task.
One point not touched on in the webinar is that you need set up message purging right away. This is critical. You do not want to find yourself in situation where you need to purge 30 days of messages. That could fill up your journals, which means filling up a disk, which would create a severe problem. Work with your team and InterSystems to create an effective purging strategy from day one.
To access the custom code referenced in this post and the webinar, click the link at the top of this article.
Thank you for reading and for watching!