IMPORTANT UPDATE:  This update only affects ServerView Devices of type HTTP or HTTPS

The ServerView http monitoring agents are being upgraded this week to send more modern header identification.

Previously, most ServerView http/s task headers identified the browser as a version of IE6.  This version has been updated to IE10 for compatibility reasons.

Some websites return different responses based upon browser type and version, so this update may cause unintended errors, or changes in monitoring results, because a web page returns different results than it did when the monitoring task was set up.  If you experience unexpected errors with http/s ServerView monitors after this week, please create a support ticket to resolve the issue.


SQL Server Monitoring: A Case Study

SQL_Server_MonitoringWe recently worked with a client to troubleshoot issues with a SQL Server instance.  The client was running SQL Server 2012 on a Virtual Machine.  The applications running on the SQL Server were running into issues and the client was unsure what the root cause of the issues was.

Initially, we set up web application monitoring with the client to send alerts if the web application began running slower than normal, thus letting us know the next time a problem was encountered.  By setting a timeout threshold for the page load speed, we were able to identify different time periods where the system appeared to have an issue accessing data from the SQL server.  Using the built in alerts, we received emails as soon as an issue was detected. Read more…


Gimp Website is Down

UPDATE:  It appears that the Gimp website registration expired and so the DNS resolution was automatically “parked” by the registrar.  Once they were aware of this, the Gimp site admins re-registered the site for another 5 years, then the site was pointed back to the original content servers, but there was a lag in DNS resolution due to the ttl on different servers around the internet for a few more hours.

Popular open source image editing software GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) is currently experience an outage of their entire domain.  It appears that their registration may have expired without being renewed.  Hopefully this is simply an oversight, and the problem will be corrected soon.gimp_outage

Gimp serves as a free open source alternative to the industry standard image editing software published by Adobe photoshop.  While Gimp may have lagged behind it’s biggest rival Photoshop in certain features, it provides a great platform for those who dabble in image editing but are not willing or able to pay the hefty fees of the alternatives.

If only Gimp.org had signed up for a service like Dotcom-Monitor that monitored websites and sends alert notifications to the site hosts as soon as an outage was detected.

While this may simply be an inconvenience for new users trying to download the free software, such an issue for most for-profit businesses could lead to a loss of thousands or even millions of dollars in business.

Dotcom-Monitor provides a number of useful web and online server monitoring tools to monitor anything that is online, including websites, web applications, e-mail servers, and more.  Check out the free web testing tools to see how your servers perform from over 20 locations around the world, or sign up for a free 30 day trial of web monitoring services to establish a baseline of your website performance.


Monitor Exchange Outlook Web Access

Is Outlook Web Access down right now?monitor-exchange-outlook-web-access

What is the Outlook service status?

Is Exchange down?

You’ve come to the right place.  We can help you determine the answers to these questions before your users have a chance to ask them.  We will show you how to monitor Exchange Outlook Web Access.

Dotcom-Monitor has all the tools you need to perform Web monitoring for Exchange Outlook Web Access, including OWA, ActiveSync, SMTP, POP3 and IMAP4.  While the last three protocols mentioned are fairly common and straight-forward, the first two, Outlook Web Access and ActiveSync are a bit more unique to Dotcom-Monitor.

Read more…


3rd Party Content Monitoring

Most websites that exist today rely on 3rd party elements in one form or another.  For example, there are many services to gather analytics about site traffic such as Google analytics, but in order to work properly they require you to load a small script as a part of each web page like www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js.  This is a small JavaScript file that is called when a page loads.  This JavaScript file enables Google to record user traffic throughout a website.  Most of the time, this file loads very quickly and efficiently, and often times it is already cashed on the local browser because it is such a common file, but if something ever goes wrong with the servers hosting the script, it could end up negatively impacting the page load speeds of your website.

There are a number of reasons that you may use data or files hosted on third party servers, perhaps the files or scripts are updated often and you want to be sure that you have the latest version.  Maybe the scripts help gather data for you like Google analytics does.  Perhaps you are trying to optimize page load speed for all users in diverse geographic locations by using a Content Distribution Network (CDN).

Monitoring CDN Performance3rd-Party-Monitor

Content Distribution Networks are typically very large organizations with servers in many data centers around the world, usually very near or even in the internet backbone facilities.  When an end user requests content hosted by a CDN, the request is routed to the CDN server closest to the user which could cut out thousands of milliseconds of transfer time for each element on the page as the number of hops across the internet are greatly decreased. Read more…