Create Custom Activities

You can create your own custom activities for any business app by monitoring any user action, like a mouse click or a key press, and measuring the time until the app's GUI responds. In Aternity, you can compare response times in any app across the enterprise, and troubleshoot performance by seeing when they perform slower.

Create multiple action-response pairs, known as activities, in web apps which run inside browsers, desktop apps which run locally on your computer, or mobile apps on Android or iOS.

A custom activity measures the time between any user action and the app's response

For example, define a custom activity to measure a search for a customer in your CRM, from selecting Search until displaying the results. Or you can monitor the time check an item in your inventory, or save an invoice in your financial system.

Tip

If your enterprise uses SteelCentral Essentials License, you can add managed applications, and you use predefined activities, but you cannot create your own new custom activities. To add custom activities, ask your administrator about upgrading to SteelCentral Enterprise License. Learn more.

Before You Begin

  • Add the application to be managed in Aternity by selecting the Gear Icon > Managed Applications.

  • Before you create a custom activity, you must first define the key actions (business transactions) in your application which you want to monitor:

    • Find the business transaction in your application where you want to monitor response times. For example, find the common user actions which must be fast, or where slow responses would impact on sales or service.

    • Interview typical users, power users or new users about how they perform each of those actions in your app. Each may use their own keyboard shortcuts or mouse clicks.

      Different types of users may receive different results. For example, the application may respond differently to a sales manager versus a branch manager.

    • Pin down the exact moment when this business transaction starts and ends. Typically it starts with a user action like a mouse click or a key press, and ends when something appears or disappears on the screen. The end of the transaction can be as tiny as a change in the status bar, or as big as a new window displayed on the screen.

    • Ideally, the response time of an activity should only be the time a user spends waiting for the application to respond. Aternity also supports special custom activities for multi-step workflows, which include waiting for a human to respond, known as an application event.

Procedure

Create a custom activity in the Aternity Activity Designer or the Aternity Web Activity Creator (early access) to measure the application's response time. Then you can export the custom activity as a signature file to upload it to Aternity.

Create custom activities and view their performance in Aternity
To... Do This...

Create activities for web page load times in a managed web app (learn more)

Select the Gear Icon > Managed Applications > app_name > Page Load Activities at the top to create an activity for the page load time (WPM).

Learn more.

Add activity for page load times

Create custom activities for web applications (learn more)

Use the new Aternity Web Activity Creator (early access) to design and test your custom activity directly in your web application.

The Aternity Web Activity Creator (WAC) (early access) enables you to quickly and intuitively create custom activities for web applications directly from the web page. The WAC is an interactive Google Chrome extension that opens as a floating sidebar next to your web page. It offers a simple workflow to create your custom activities all on one PC.

Learn more.

Use WAC to create custom activities for Web Applications

Create a custom activity for a desktop application (learn more)

For desktop applications, you must first record the business transaction on a monitored device (learn more), then create the activity in Designer (learn more), upload it to Aternity, distribute it to a test group (learn more), then test it (learn more).

Tip

While you can use the Designer also for web applications, we recommend using the Aternity Web Activity Creator (learn more) for a more interactive experience.

Learn more about creating desktop custom activities.

Workflow for creating a custom activity in a desktop application

Create a custom activity for a mobile app (learn more.)

An Administrator of Aternity remotely starts recording the events of a monitored mobile app, then the end user performs the activity. A user must give express permission to start each recording. After the activity, the administrator remotely extracts the event log of the recording, and then a signature developer uses Aternity Activity Designer to locate the start and end events of the activity. Finally exports the signature file to upload it to Aternity.

Learn more.

Workflow for creating custom activities for monitored mobile apps