How to monitor web application transactions

Mamapedia: screen gridsMost organizations these days rely on web applications to assist in their business operations. photo credit: juhansonin

The various web applications deployed within an organization usually helps automate business processes which are related to customer support, human resource management, accounting, business intelligence, unified communications and more.

IT support personnels in charged of developing and managing these web based systems are usually given the responsibility to ensure that the above mentioned critical business applications are:

  • Error free
  • Fast loading
  • Safe and secure
  • Up and running 24 x 7
  • Working according to the defined business rule

These web applications usually resides on top of an IT infrastructure which consists of:

  • Network
  • File servers
  • Email servers
  • Database servers
  • Application servers
  • Internet connectivity

In order to ensure that the business applications are up at all times, the IT team usually deploy monitoring solutions to monitor the health and status of each component.

Network monitoring solutions are usually deployed to maintain network visibility and be alerted at the first sign of potential trouble.

Although these network / application service monitoring tools are effective in notifying the IT team in case of any abnormal service behavior, it doesn’t really ensure that the functionalities of application can work seamlessly from beginning to the end.

Let’s take a scenario where a sales manager logs into the CRM system to view reports on pipeline data or new customers data but encounters a problem when trying to retrieve these information due to an application bug.

Network monitoring tools won’t be able to alert an IT support team of such problems since it only monitors the uptime and health of the services.

What’s really needed to ensure that business web applications can work without any errors is an application transaction monitoring service which automates running a set of critical transactions / workflow to ensure that it works.

So now you must be wondering what are transaction monitoring services for and how does it work.

Transaction monitoring continually monitors your web application transactions and notifies you when any of the various steps in a transaction don’t work correctly.

If we go back to our scenario where the sales manager couldn’t retrieve a report, with a transaction monitoring tool, we can instruct the tool to check the following steps first thing in the morning before people come in to work:

  1. Login (ensures that users can login to the CRM system)
  2. Reports (ensures that the report page can be loaded)
  3. Generate pipeline reports for the month (ensures that the report produces an output)

When the transaction monitoring tool runs through the steps above every morning and encounter any problems, an IT support engineer in charged of maintaining the system will be notified so that he / she can take immediate actions to fix the problem.

For a case study on how a package delivery company uses transaction monitoring to ensure continuous availability of billing and reporting modules every 5 minutes, 24 hours a day, read Multi-step Application (Transactions) Monitoring Case Study.

If you’re interested to try out transaction monitoring services to monitor your web applications, one tool that I can recommend is Monitis.

Monitis helps IT teams provide a continuous IT service delivery through their cloud based all-in-one monitoring system.

Besides providing transaction monitoring services, these are some other key services provided by Monitis:

  • Server monitoring
  • Network monitoring
  • Cloud monitoring
  • Web traffic monitoring
  • Event monitoring
  • and more

For a quick overview on how Monitis transaction monitoring works, view this video:

A key strength about Monitis monitoring has to be its 100% cloud based monitoring services where the IT team doesn’t need to worry about maintaining and installing the monitoring server itself.

Once you sign up for an account, you can begin to monitor your network, applications and transactions immediately without having to set up on your premise.

monitis wizard

For more details and information on how to use Monitis to monitor your IT services, check out Monitis today!

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