BizTalk Monitoring – You may be thinking this is a crucial task to spot the issues in your BizTalk environment. Yes, indeed! BizTalk Server does not come with any inbuilt Monitoring capabilities. In this blog post, we are covering 10 best practices that will make you better at BizTalk Monitoring using BizTalk360. Let us see them one by one.
Choosing the correct Monitoring Solution
To have the monitoring in place for your BizTalk environment, you need to rely on other out-of-the-box monitoring tools or write your custom solution. In either way, you need to have a clear thought process to proceed with. The first step would be choosing the right monitoring solution for your BizTalk environment.
My question here for you is, have you ever heard BizTalk360?
If your answer is No, I recommend continuing to read this article and am sure you are investing your valuable time at the right place to know more about it. Yes, BizTalk360 provides Sophisticated and Robust Monitoring solutions with enriched feature capabilities. In this blog post, we have written 10 Best practices that will make you better at BizTalk Monitoring.
Strategies and Set Up Alerts That Will Work for you!
Every business is unique in nature though their business requirements are different. And specifically, when it comes to monitoring their environment, it is of utmost importance to strategize their requirements. Even though you have a powerful monitoring tool in place and have not utilized it effectively, still you can see the gap in your business and struggle if any problem pops up.
BizTalk360 provides 3 types of Monitoring capability as mentioned below to bridge the gap in your business.
- Threshold Monitoring
- Health Check Monitoring
- Data Monitoring
After putting up a detailed plan, you need to set up the alarms for receiving the alerts.
Alert Threshold 1: You may want to monitor Suspended Service instances in a particular application.
Alert Threshold 2: You may want to monitor your system health to forecast shortfall/Excesses of resources that are being utilized unnecessarily (Eg: System Resources, Memory, CPU, Jobs, etc.,)
Alert Health Check: You may want to perform a daily health check of your BizTalk environment irrespective of status.
Alert Data Monitoring: You may want to understand how the messages (Flow, Service instances) are performing in your environment.
Set Priorities! Classify your requirements based on Importance.
Not all systems are as critical as others. Categorizing the most important requirements and be sure their alerting is set as a high priority than the others. To do this I suggest making a list of all your requirements, then placing it into a corresponding logical category. Here are some example categories, that you should adopt in the tool.
Category 1: Monitor your BizTalk Artifacts (Receive Locations, Orchestrations, Send Ports and Send Port Groups)
Category 2: Monitor your BizTalk Environments. (Database, SQL Jobs, BHM, Host Throttling State, Endpoints)
Category 3: Monitor your BizTalk Server Platform (CPU/Memory, Disk Space, Host Instances, Event Logs, NT services)
Never allow a single point of Failure
This is an important phase while monitoring your BizTalk environment. Basically, the first two steps would have given you clarity on how to set up alarms and differentiate under one bucket based on the requirement.
To ensure an error-free environment BizTalk360 should run round the clock. The tool provides a high availability setup where this configuration will make sure the monitoring service and other components are always running. This way you can make sure the tool won’t miss any failure that happens in your environment.
Understand your Audience
This is an important aspect of the monitoring where you need to have a clear idea about the audience of the alerts. Sending notifications to various stakeholders, depending on the nature of the monitored components is essential.
BizTalk360 has a different feature to share the emails/notifications to different stakeholders.
- System Administrators
- SQL DBA’s
- Integration Architects
- Business users
Never create an Email Filter for your Alerts
Never set up email filters or rules for your alerts/Notifications. If you have done this, then your system is not set up correctly. Automatic rules that process alerts to folders will result in an effect called “out of sight, out of mind”. This a quick way to ignore alerts and increase downtime. Hence this must be avoided.
If All is Calm and Quiet, there is something wrong
Usually, very few systems have 100% Uptime. Downtime is sometimes inevitable. This applies to BizTalk topology as well. Though all the high availability and clustering has been set up, there is a chance for unexpected downtime/Failures.
If you have not received an alert in a while, be sure that everything is still configured correctly by just checking your monitoring configuration. The reasons could be as below.
- Someone might have misconfigured the alarm configurations.
- Turned off the alarms.
- An alarm could reach its threshold condition.
Establish a Process for How alerts are Resolved
Creating a process on how to handle Alerts will allow for the quickest resolution and hold all parties accountable. If suppose, there is a threshold alarm and 5 people in a group configured for receiving the alerts. When they receive the alerts for any violation, some streamlined process should be there to take the appropriate action otherwise it causes confusion and more work.
Ask For support
You are not alone when setting up the BizTalk360 monitoring. We have support and technical staff to assist you with any issues. You can take advantage of their knowledge of the product and their experiences with other customers as well.
Be direct and simply ask them to review your setup before it fails, and you find out it was set up incorrectly. You can reach out to the team in the email firstname.lastname@example.org
It is crucial to document exactly how you have set up your business requirements and assist your fellow team members in the future. BizTalk360 has a clear and structured documentation portal where you can easily search for any information you.
Hope this article is very helpful to establish a seamless monitoring configuration using BizTalk360. You are someone new to BizTalk360 and interested to try the product. If your answer is Yes, I would like you to give it a try, either using the 30 days free-trial.