For the purpose of experience monitoring, you define your application in terms of three essential elements which together describe how the world sees your app. They are: a url; a series of actions to perform at the url; and a location from which users access the url and perform those actions. Select one or more of each of those elements for any given app. AppNeta Performance Manager (APM) will then generate all of the unique combinations of those elements and set up monitoring for each. For example, two locations, three urls, and one script, yields six combinations. Each one of them is a web path.

The end result is that your experience monitoring coverage will extend across all of your service instances and your geographically distributed user base. APM collects data at the web path level, and then the data for all the web paths in your app is aggregated to give you an app-level view of performance. Remember that each web path represents a specific geographic perspective. It’s important to keep an eye on this level to make sure that end user experience is positive for that contingent of your user base, even if your app-level metrics are within tolerance.

Some APM terminology:

web app group
An application definition comprised of one or more locations, target urls, and workflows, plus the the result of combining them into web paths.
web path
A unique combination of location, target url, and workflow for which monitoring is performed.
web test
A single execution of a script.
workflow
A container for a script, its variables, and alert and Apdex settings.

Prerequisites

  1. You need either a Global Monitoring Point or an Enterprise Monitoring Point.
  2. Set your Global Monitoring Point and Enterprise Monitoring Point locations.
  3. Turn on email notifications for experience monitoring events.
  4. Make sure you’re using supported proxy and app authentication methods.

Web app group

The first thing you need to do is create a web app group, a container for the app definition and corresponding web paths.

  1. Navigate to > Web App Groups.
  2. Click ‘+ web app group’.
  3. Choose ‘custom’ from the drop-down. All other options in the drop-down are deprecated.
  4. Choose a name.
  5. Click ‘save’.

Monitor from…

Choose the geographic locations you want to monitor the app from. You’ll be able to choose from Global Monitoring Points or Enterprise Monitoring Points with a WAN app count greater than 0. You may also choose a source interface if multiple interfaces are configured.

  1. Find your new web app group.
  2. Click ‘configure’.
  3. Click ‘monitor from…’.
  4. Choose one or more monitoring points.
  5. Set web proxy details if necessary.
  6. Click ‘ok’.

Monitor to…

For the second part of your application definition, specify the url of your web app. You can enter more than one url if you want to monitor multiple instances serving the same app.

  1. Click ‘monitor to…’.
  2. Enter one or more urls.
  3. Skip the variable definition for now.
  4. Click ‘ok’.

Workflows…

The final part of your application definition is describing a set of actions a typical user would perform—log in, click, search, etc.—in one of two scripting languages. For the purpose of this deployment, we want you to create a workflow but leave the default script, which is a single line that opens the home page of the target url.

  1. Click ‘workflows…’.
  2. Choose a name for the workflow.
  3. Choose a script type: AppNeta Synthetic or Selenium (recommended).
  4. Click ‘ok’.

Limited support: Not all locations support Selenium. APM prevents you from creating unsupported combinations of location + language by either limiting your location choices or preventing you from selecting Selenium.

Next steps

Make sure results are rolling in without error.

Web paths
See the user experience charts for a unique combination of monitoring point, target url, and workflow.
Web tests
Drill down into the complete results for a single workflow execution.

After letting APM run for a while, consider these additional features:

Milestones
The default workflow only opens the home page. Create a complete workflow in either the AppNeta Synthetic or Selenium (recommended).
Apdex
Apdex is an industry-standard grading system for web app performance. You can customize the grading scale.
Alerts
Set up alerts so that you can passively monitor your apps, during non-business hours for example.
Dashboards
Elevate the apps you care about most and watch them in real time.
Wireless
The wireless interface on your monitoring point is not enabled by default. If you end up monitoring over wired and wireless, it also helps to know the IP of the default interface.