Key Task: Analyze Business Activities

Use the Analyze Business Activities dashboard to find a correlation between the performance of a managed application's activities and any two monitored attributes, and then narrow down the data further. There are several dashboards within this one; select the View to fit the data you need.

The Analyze Business Activities dashboard
Tip

Before using this dashboard, try the Commonalities Analysis dashboard to troubleshoot a single activity to find a single common thread to define the problem. However, if your problem is more complex, perhaps involving more than one activity and viewing several common threads which intersect, use the Analyze dashboards to test your theory.

For example, you can verify a complex hypothesis like checking if SAP's performance is poor only for users with quad-core Dell desktop PCs in London during the morning hours. To view this, you can list all the different manufacturers (Dell, Lenovo, Apple and so on) and list all the CPU configurations for each manufacturer. Then, you can narrow down the data by adding filters for the application (SAP), the device type (desktops only), the location (London only), and the hours in the day (morning hours). Now you can view the dashboard results to verify your theory that quad-cores from Dell give a different response time compared to other configurations.

Example of checking a theory in the Performance Breakdown dashboard
Tip

You can also view and analyze this data using the ALL_ACTIVITIES REST API. Learn more.

Procedure

  1. Step 1 Open a browser and sign in to Aternity.
  2. Step 2 Select Main Menu > Analyze > Activity Performance.
    Accessing the Analyze Business Activities dashboard
  3. Step 3 Choose the data to view for your investigation, by selecting View on the right hand side.

    This dashboard contains several dashboards within it.

    The Analyze Business Activities dashboard
    Field Description
    Performance Breakdown

    Find a correlation between the performance of a managed application's activities and any two attributes.

    Performance Trends

    Step back and view the larger picture of activity performance trends over the timeframe, comparing different values of one attribute over that time.

    For example, you can compare the recent performance of several SharePoint servers over the past week, to see if any of them dipped in their performance over that time. Alternatively, you can compare the performance of different device types during that week. If you find that one measurement is very different from others, you can investigate this line of inquiry further.

    Use the same horizontal axis (time) to view a peak in one graph and a corresponding peak in another graph.

    Viewing the recent performance of the attribute over time
    Usage Trends

    Application Owners can use this to view an application's usage patterns, where it is used, why and by whom. For upgrades or new deployments, you can show its adoption, or compare the productivity between different locations. When you understand the usage patterns and volumes, you can better plan for future releases, by investing in the most popular aspects of the application.

    For example, you can view the success of a rollout or new initiative by validating the adoption rate of your application in each location over time, by choosing Breakdown > Business Locations.

    Alternatively you can plan an enhancement or update to your deployment based on viewing an application's productivity in different locations. Select Breakdown > Status to view the performance of the application, and then selecting alternative locations in the Filters section to compare results.

    As another example, you can validate whether more people are using the application with your virtual application server, by selecting a Breakdown of Device Types and viewing the volumes of people using virtual applications versus regular desktops.

    Example: Viewing recent adoption of virtual applications
    Traffic Analysis

    Find a correlation between the detailed response times for any two monitored attributes.

    The response times of activities are split into client time ( light blue), and the combination or union of the backend time ( dark blue) and the network time ( blue).

    The components of an activity's response time
    Cost Analysis

    Plan future decisions by viewing the cost impact of different monitored attributes.

    For example, you could view the productivity loss while waiting for just several specific activities across several applications.

    To calculate the cost of an activity, you must enter the average hourly cost of an employee in the $ per Hour field at the top of the screen. Aternity already knows the number of end users performing each activity, and the time they spent waiting for the application to respond. So the total cost of an activity is the average response time of an activity (converted from seconds to hours) multiplied by the number of times this activity was performed, multiplied by the cost per hour.

    Calculate cost of an activity to your organization
  4. Step 4 Focus your dashboard using Breakdowns and Filters, to assess whether you are on the right track to understand the cause of the issue.
    1. a Select the two criteria (Breakdowns) that you want to correlate, using the panel on the right hand side.

      When you choose two Breakdowns, Aternity displays them as the two leftmost columns of the dashboard.

    2. b Choose Filters and Filter Values to limit the display to the data where the attribute has that value.
    Choose the two criteria (Breakdowns) to check for correlations and narrow further with filters

    Select any of the following fields to appear as Breakdowns or Filters.

    Tip

    Aternity only offers to narrow data with filter values which are available. It does not offer values which have not been reported. For example, if you select Week Number as your filter, it will only display the weeks for which monitoring data is available.

    Field Description
    Activities (breakdown only)

    Displays the name of the monitored activity within the application as it appears in the dashboards.

    Application Version

    Displays the version number for this application, which the Agent for End User Devices retrieves from the executable's Properties > Details.

    Applications (breakdown only) View the list of applications (desktop, web and mobile) running on your monitored devices, and key information about their performance.
    Business Locations

    Displays the name of the current location of the device. This is different from the Office, which is fixed for each user.

    For example, if a user based in the Houston office is working from the Chicago office, the Office is Houston, while the Business Location is Chicago.

    Carriers

    (Mobile devices only) Displays the name of the cellular carrier to which the device is connected.

    Cities

    Displays the city of the current location of the device.

    Client Device Name

    (For virtual deployments only) Displays the hostname of a device which is connecting to a VDI or virtual application server.

    Client Device Type

    (For virtual deployments only) Displays the type of front line terminal which runs the virtual session hosted on a virtual server.

    If the front line terminal has an Agent for End User Devices locally installed, it reports the type of device of the terminal. Otherwise, if it does not have its own Agent, it reports it as a Remote Device.

    Countries

    Displays the country of the current location of the device.

    # CPU Cores

    (Desktops, laptops and mobile devices only) Displays the number of CPU cores of the device.

    CPU Frequency

    (Windows, Macs only) Displays the speed of the CPU processors of the device.

    CPU Generation

    (Windows on Intel only) Displays the generation of the Intel Core micro-architecture. For example 6 represents the 6th generation architecture processor, also known as Skylake.

    CPU Model

    (Windows on Intel only) Displays the model and speed of the Intel processor, as displayed in the System control panel. For example Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-4770 CPU @ 3.40GHz or Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5620 @ 2.40GHz.

    CPU Type

    (Windows on Intel only) Displays the core type of the Intel processor, for example i7, E5, and so on).

    Data Center Locations

    Data Center Locations in Aternity lists the locations of any virtual application servers (like Citrix XenApp) and VDI hypervisors (like in VMWare vSphere) which run the application. If the application is deployed both locally and virtually, one of the locations displays as Local.

    Days from Last Boot (breakdown only)

    Displays the number of days since the last time the device was booted. If you think that people experience slowdowns because they have not booted in some time, you can compare their performance with users who restart their devices frequently.

    Day of Week (filters only)

    Select to filter the displayed data for one or more days in the week.

    Department

    Displays the name of the department to which the user or the device belongs.

    (Windows) Agent sends LDAP queries to the Active Directory (AD) to find information about the connected domain controller, then extracts the user's > Properties > Department.

    (Mobile) Mobile apps can set this manually in the Aternity Mobile SDK.

    Departments

    Check if the drop in performance is centered around a specific department, which can point to a configuration which is unique to that group of users, by viewing the performance in the list of departments. For example, if you find that only the Sales department is suffering poor performance, you can trace it to an upgrade which only happened on their computers, like a new CTI which interferes with your application.

    Device Names

    Displays the hostname of the monitored device. View it in the Windows Control Panel > System > Computer Name, or on Apple Macs in System Preferences > Sharing > Computer Name.

    (Mobile) Displays the Device Name field. You can customize the hostname of iOS or Android devices running your enterprise's app, so device names appear in the dashboards with a consistent naming policy. For example, you can dynamically assign the device name according to the enterprise username of the app.

    Device Types

    Displays the type of device reporting performance to Aternity.

    • Desktops are monitored Windows devices without a fitted battery, or for Macs, any monitored MacBook running macOS or OS X.

    • Laptops are Windows devices with a battery and a built-in keyboard (including all Windows hybrid tablet/laptop models), or for Macs, any monitored laptop running macOS or OS X.

    • Remote Devices have applications accessed remotely via an RDP protocol, for example, with Microsoft's Remote Desktop Connection.

    • Smartphones run monitored mobile apps on a small touch screen within a mobile operating system environment.

    • Tablets have larger touch screens, and no built-in keyboard, running iOS or Android. If it runs Windows, it is defined as a tablet if it is a known model of a Windows pure tablet (like Microsoft Surface models).

    • Virtual App Servers offer multiple users access to a single instance of an application, for example, with Citrix XenApp.

    • Virtual Desktops offer the ability to run an application within a VDI environment, which is a virtual instance of the entire desktop operating system (usually Windows).

    Emails

    (Windows only) Displays the email address associated with the current logged in user.

    Hours of Day (filters only)

    Select to limit the displayed data of the dashboard by specific hourly slots in the day.

    Hypervisors

    (For VDI deployments only) Displays the hypervisor name if your application is running in a virtual desktop environment, like VMWare vSphere. You can check if the drop in performance in some virtual machines (VMs) is concentrated around a specific hypervisor.

    Info1

    Info2

    Info 1 and Info 2 display extra custom contextual data reported by your custom activity.

    Manufacturers

    Displays the name of the vendor which created this device, like Samsung, Apple, Dell, Lenovo, and so on.

    Memory Size

    Displays the size of physical RAM of the device.

    Models

    Displays the name and the model number of the device, like iPhone 6s, GalaxyTab8, MacBook Pro 12.1, Dell Latitude D620.

    MS Office Versions

    Displays the high level version of Microsoft Office, like MS Office 2016 or MS Office 2013.

    Network Types

    (Devices with Agent 9.x or later) Displays the type of network connection of the device: Mobile or WiFi, and also LAN (for non-mobile devices only).

    On Site

    (Windows only) Displays true when the device can identify and connect to the Microsoft Active Directory site (either directly or via VPN).

    On VPN

    (For all devices except mobile and Macs) Displays true when the device is connected to the corporate network through VPN.

    The Agent queries Windows for a virtual network adapter with an active connection and a common name in its description: AGN, Checkpoint, Cisco AnyConnect, Citrix VPN products, F5 Networks adapters, Juniper Networks, OpenVPN TAP, Palo Alto GlobalProtect, Pulse Secure, PureVPN, SonicWall, and VyprVPN.

    OS Architectures

    Displays whether the operating system of the monitored device is 32-bit or 64-bit.

    OS Disk Types

    (Windows only, Agent 9.0.3 or later) Displays the type of hard disk containing the operating system. Possible values are:

    • HDD for a traditional spinning hard disk drive

    • SSD for a solid state drive

    • Virtual if this is not a physical device.

    OS Family

    Displays the broad category of the operating system. Use this to differentiate between different major operating system groups. For example, it displays all releases of Microsoft Windows as MS Windows, all releases of Windows Server as MS Windows Server or all releases of iOS as iOS.

    OS Name or Operating Systems

    Displays the generic name and version of the operating system (like MS Windows 10, MS Windows Server 2008 R2, MacOS 10.3, iOS 10 or Android 6). Use this to differentiate between different versions of an operating system.

    For example, it displays Windows 10 Pro and Windows 10 Enterprise all as MS Windows 10, or iOS 10.2 and iOS 10.3 as iOS 10.

    To view this information and the service pack version, see OS Version.

    OS Version

    Displays the full name, the exact version number, and the service pack version of the operating system. In Windows 10, it includes the release ID (like Microsoft Windows 10 Enterprise 1507). Use this to differentiate between details of the same operating system. For example, it lists MS Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise SP 1.0 separately from MS Windows Server 2008 R2 Enterprise SP 2.0.

    Page Titles

    (For web applications only) Displays the reported title of the web page which an end user loads. The Agent only sends this information if the page is part of a managed web application (WPM).

    Pilot Groups

    Displays the pilot group to which the device belongs.

    A pilot group is a custom set of users or devices which undergo a change, like migrating to Windows 10, or updating the type of hard disk to SSD. You must assign a user or device to only one pilot group at a time, to ensure that you do not perform multiple changes at the same time.

    Regions

    You can optionally define a region in Aternity to group together several locations under a single label, like the geographical region of EMEA, North America or even Southern Europe, South-Western US any other grouping you choose.

    Role

    Displays the job title of the current user logged in to this device. In Windows, this is the same as the AD Title.Agent sends LDAP queries to the Active Directory (AD) to find information about the connected domain controller, then extracts the user's > Properties > > Organization > Title (Title).

    Server Hostname

    Displays the actual hostname of the server (NOT its DNS alias), when an application on the device contacts a server. For example, on a device using Outlook 365, the hostname might be outlook-emeacenter.office365.com while its DNS name is shortened to outlook.office365.com. This is a clearer definition to replace Target Server.

    If you contact more than one server during an activity, it reports the server whose total backend time was longest during that activity.

    Server IP

    Displays the IP address of the server, when an application on the device contacts a server. For example, on a device using Outlook, it displays the IP address of the Exchange server. This is a clearer definition to replace Target Server.

    If you contact more than one server during an activity, it reports the server whose total backend time was longest during that activity.

    Server Name

    Displays the DNS alias of the hostname of the server (not the computer's actual hostname), when an application on the device contacts a server. For example, on a device using Outlook 365, the DNS name might be outlook.office365.com while its full hostname might be outlook-emeacenter.office365.com. This is a clearer definition to replace Target Server.

    If you contact more than one server during an activity, it reports the server whose total backend time was longest during that activity.

    States

    Displays the geographical state of the current location of the devices (or area, if state is not applicable).

    Status

    The status of an activity is based on one response time compared to the recent expected (baselined) response time. The statuses are measured in severity: Normal , Minor , Major or Critical .

    Activity response measured time with a status
    Subnets

    Displays the device's subnet configuration used to connect to Aternity (including IP v6 if the device runs Agent 10 or later).

    Target Server

    Displays the name or IP address of the server which the device contacted as part of performing the activity. For example, if the activity is in SAP, this field would display the FQDN of the SAP server.

    This is used for backward compatibility, but is now more clearly defined In the Server Hostname, Server IP and Server Name fields.

    If you contact more than one server during an activity, it reports the server whose total backend time was longest during that activity.

    User Domains

    Displays the LDAP domain name for the user who is logged in to the device.

    User Full Name

    (Windows only) Displays the full name of the person accessing the device as defined in the corporate LDAP (not the username).

    Username

    Displays the username signed in to the device's operating system.

    Week Number (filters only)

    Select this to display only data related to a particular week number in the year.

    Wifi BSSID

    (From Agent 9.2 or Agent for Mac 2.3) Displays the ID (MAC address) of the wireless access point, which the device currently uses to connect to a WiFi network.

    Wifi SSID

    (From Agent 9.2, or Agent for Mac 2.0 and mobile) Displays the name of the WiFi network where the device currently connects.

  5. Step 5 View the performance of each combination of breakdowns at the center of your troubleshooting hypothesis, to find any changes in performance.
    Look for a correlation between performance and the criteria you chose as breakdowns

    You can sort by any column's results by selecting its title at the bottom of the column.

    Use the score to measure short term (acute) recent or sudden changes from regular baselined performance. For example, if a mail usually opens in 1.5s, (the baseline response time), it creates a minor baseline (small departure from the baseline) and a major baseline (significant departure). If performance is suddenly (acutely) much slower, like 5s, it would be beyond the major baseline, and therefore have a red status with a low score.

    Use the actual response times (not scores) to check the performance of chronic (long term) problems. You cannot rely on measurements based on the recent baselines, as those responses would be chronically slow for some time, thereby skewing baselines to make those times look normal. In this example, if the activity for opening mails has been 5s for several weeks, Aternity adjusts its baselines to 5s, so this now looks normal, and therefore has a green status with a good score, which is misleading.

    Field Description
    First / Second Breakdowns

    Displays the values of the two criteria which you chose in the Breakdowns section in the right hand pane, so you can compare between them to find a correlation with end user performance.

    Score

    Displays the performance as the score for the statuses of all the activities by condensing all the activity statuses into a single value. It displays this score for each of the values you chose to display. Use this for recent problems, not long term problems.

    Activity Response

    Displays the performance as activity response times for each of the values you chose to display. The response times of activities are split into client time ( light blue), and the combination or union of the backend time ( dark blue) and the network time ( blue).

    Activity response time splits into network, server and client time

    Use the actual response times (not scores) to check the performance of chronic (long term) problems. You cannot rely on measurements based on the recent baselines, as those responses would be chronically slow for some time, thereby skewing baselines to make those times look normal.

    Incoming Traffic

    (Traffic Analysis only) Incoming traffic is the average amount of data downloaded from the network to the device during the performance of an activity (between its start and end). Aternity reports the total volume of network traffic in KB in both directions while an application performs an activity.

    Outgoing Traffic

    (Traffic Analysis only) Outgoing traffic is the average amount of data uploaded from the device to the network during the performance of an activity (between its start and end). Aternity reports the total volume of network traffic in KB in both directions while an application performs an activity.

    RTT

    (Traffic Analysis only) Round trip time (RTT) is the time between sending a message to the server and the return of its echo acknowledgment back to the client. Each request from the client generates an acknowledgment from the server that it received the request. RTT measures the time of a single request and its acknowledgment. It does NOT include the response of the request, which would require the server to process the request.

    Round trip time is the time until the echo acknowledgment returns from the server
    Unique Users

    DIsplays the number of people with this combination of breakdown values, and therefore the number of people affected by this performance measurement.

    Volume

    (For managed applications only) Displays the number times that people with this combination of attributes performed activities, hence adding weight to the impact of this measurement. If the same user performs the same activity twice, it counts as two.

  6. Step 6 In the Cost Analysis view only, you can enter the average cost per hour for the company as people wait for an application to respond in $ per Hour at the top of the screen.
    Tip

    To calculate the total costs more accurately, if the average costs vary significantly across your organization, you can select a single department or location (in the Filters section) and enter its average cost.

    Set the rates underlying the cost results in the top corner
    Field Description
    $ per Hour

    Enter the average cost of employees per hour. Aternity uses this rate to convert the total response times to financial cost.

    Ignore Less

    Enter the minimum cost of an activity to be displayed in this dashboard. Any activity whose Lost Productivity (horizontal bar) amounts to less than this value is not displayed in the dashboard.

  7. Step 7 You can change the start time of the data displayed in this dashboard in the Timeframe menu in the top right corner of the dashboard.

    You can change the start time of the data displayed in this dashboard in the Timeframe menu in the top right corner of the dashboard.

    You can access data in this dashboard (retention) going back up to 90 days.

    This dashboard displays raw data in real time, refreshing every time you access it or whenever you manually refresh the browser page.