Monitoring Templates

Monitoring Templates within SysKit are designed to make it as easy as possible for you to analyze system performance and simplify the performance monitoring of your Windows environments.

From a single console, you can monitor application and hardware performance in real time, customize the data you want to collect with SysKit, define thresholds for computer state and alerts, generate reports, and view performance data history through various SysKit reports.

Performance Counters are the numeric data values that SysKit collects by monitoring computers. They can be included in the operating system or can be part of individual applications. A unique set of Windows performance counters provides statistical information for components such as processor, memory, processes, hard disk, and cache. SysKit can also monitor performance counters for external components such as databases, applications, and printers.

SysKit provides a Template Wizard for customization of performance counters collection. With the Template Wizard, you can discover and load the same performance counters that are accessible through Microsoft Performance Monitor.

The Monitoring Template within SysKit is a collection of performance counters to be monitored, and it includes the associated rules and suggested threshold values to detect out-of-bounds conditions.
SysKit comes with a predefined set of Monitoring Templates for some of the most common server roles—including SQL, IIS, and SharePoint—to quickly get you up and running with performance monitoring.

SysKit can request the current value of performance counters at a specified interval. The default performance counters collection interval is set to 60 seconds.

Every Monitoring Template needs to contain at least one monitoring element of two that are currently available: Performance Counters and Windows Services. You can create separate Monitoring Templates for Windows Services and assign them to designated computers or computer groups.

Once SysKit is up and running on your server, all counters that exist on a representative computer can be discovered and loaded during the Monitoring Template creation process. Afterwards, when a Monitoring Template is assigned to designated computers or computer groups, SysKit will discover and bind all available counters and their instances on the computers you have specified for monitoring.

Monitoring the health of a computer system is incredibly important. That’s why Microsoft built performance monitoring into the very first version of Windows NT. Now you can start monitoring custom performance counters using SysKit’s Template Wizard.

You can create Monitoring Templates to monitor various performance metrics on specific computers or computer groups. Each monitoring template should reflect the specific computer role (SharePoint, SQL, IIS, etc.).

We’ll break down how you can load custom performance counters into SysKit using Template Wizard.

  1. In the General step, simply enter the Monitoring Template name and description. You can also choose whether you want to include Performance Counters or Windows Services, or both, in this Template.
  1. In the Add Counters step, you will need to select the computer from which you wish to load representative Performance Counters. When a representative list of performance counters is loaded from a computer, you must select the performance counters and instances for which you want to collect data. Move the desired performance counters from Available to Selected Performance Counters.
    Please note! The representative performance counters that are loaded from a computer may vary based on the features of the selected computer that are enabled on that system.
  1. In the Configure Counters step, you will need to configure the Threshold, Notification, and Counter settings for the selected performance counter(s) in the previous step.
    • Under Threshold Settings, you can define the warning and critical thresholds and the threshold state change interval.
    • Under Notification Settings, you can select the checkbox in order to receive an email notification when the computer crosses a warning and/or critical threshold. You can also define the length of time before the alert notification is to be repeated for that counter.
    • Under Counter Settings, you can define the Collecting Tolerance, which means that not every collected value will be saved into the product database. Only new counter values that cross the specified tolerance, when compared to the last saved values, will be registered and saved.
  1. In the Add Services step, you can select the services you wish to add to the template. SysKit collects all the Windows Services that are running on your monitored computers in real time, so you can always choose the important services—from the list of all available services—according to your preferences. In this step you can also add Windows Services that are not currently listed, by typing the Service Name of the designated Windows Service into the lower textbox. Asterisk (*) wildcard is used to represent a number of characters or an empty string, e.g. MSSQL*.
    After you select and move the desired services from Available Services to Selected Services, you can proceed with the next step.
  1. In the Configure Services step, you can define actions for the selected services in the previous step. Here you can configure the following options:
    • select the checkbox so that SysKit will try to restart a critical service after it has stopped;
    • select the checkbox to receive an email notification when a selected service is stopped;
    • define the length of time before the alert notification is to be repeated for that service.

In the last step, after your Monitoring Template has been configured successfully, please click the Finish button. You can then use the created template and assign it to the appropriate computers or computer groups.

 

All Monitoring Template(s) that are assigned to the monitored computer(s) can be viewed and explored in the Overview and Detailed Analysis reports.

Tip! In cases where an SQL template has been applied to a server with named SQL Server instances installed, no data will be collected for those instances. You need to create a new template by adding performance counters for each instance you wish to monitor, while following the naming convention.

 

Monitoring Templates Ribbon

Ribbon provides a set of basic functions for managing the created monitoring templates.

  • Add – Add a new monitoring template.
  • Modify – Modify the selected monitoring template.
  • Duplicate – Create a copy of the currently selected monitoring template.
  • Delete – Delete the selected monitoring template.
  • Assign to Computers – Assign the selected monitoring template to computer(s).
  • Assign to Computer Groups – Assign the selected monitoring template to computer group(s).

This dialog provides options for importing and configuring Monitoring Templates in the SYSmt format, as well as exporting functionality. Monitoring Templates are generated in this format when our development team creates them upon our customers’ requests.

When importing previously created Monitoring Templates in the SYSmt format, simply select the monitoring template definitions you want from your local or network drive. Afterward, assign the template(s) to the desired computers or computer groups from the upper ribbon.
When applying the template(s) to collect custom performance counters data for monitored computers, these two options are available:
Assign to Computers and Assign to Computer Groups.

If one or more Monitoring Templates have been assigned to specific computers or computer groups, the associated performance data will be displayed on the Detailed Analysis report.

Tip! When you are importing or exporting a monitoring template definition, all its monitoring elements will be imported / exported.

This dialog enables you to download and import the predefined Monitoring Templates from Acceleratio’s repository. There, you can find three monitoring templates tied to a specific server role, such as SharePoint, Citrix or Hyper-V. It is very important to read the template description on the right side.

If you select a monitoring template from the list, the following template information will be displayed:

  • Name – the name of the monitoring template.
  • Description – the description of the monitoring template. It is very important to read the description, as it may clarify the purpose of the template and the specific server role that the template should be applied on.
  • Version – monitoring templates can be changed and updated with more advanced functionality by our product team.
  • Author – the name of the author.
  • Date Published – the date when the monitoring template was published.

Depending on which tab is selected, the available options change their purpose:

  • Search box – Use this option to search through the available monitoring templates. The template description will also be included if it matches the entered criteria.
  • Online tab – Displays monitoring templates that are ready for installation.
  • Installed tab – Displays a list of monitoring templates that are already installed. If you want to remove installed templates, just select them and click the Remove button. Afterwards, the monitoring template(s) and all related data will be deleted.
  • Updates tab – Displays a list of monitoring templates that have been updated by our product team. If you want to update installed templates, just select them and click the Update button. Afterwards, the template(s) will be replaced with new ones, keeping all the previously defined user settings for applied computers or groups, thresholds, notifications, tolerance and restart options.

When downloading available monitoring templates, simply select the templates and click the Install button. After the monitoring templates have been downloaded, the success dialog will appear, informing you that the templates have been installed and additional configuration is necessary for the data collection to start.