Product Documentation

Application Analytics and Management

Apr 23, 2017

Note

This feature is currently available in Beta.

Application Analytics and Management feature of NetScaler MAS strengthens the application-centric approach to help you address various application delivery challenges. This approach gives you visibility into health score of applications, helps you determine the security risks, and helps you detect anomalies in the application traffic flows and take corrective actions.

The following illustration provides an overview of the various tasks you can perform for Application Management and Analytics: 

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Applications can be either discovered applications or custom applications.

Discovered Applications

Applications that are created automatically for every managed virtual server. Discovered applications will always have one virtual server, and these applications can not be edited or deleted directly.

Custom Applications

Applications created by users from discovered applications. NetScaler MAS allows you to add, edit, and delete these applications. Custom applications are created by one or more virtual servers. When you create a custom application, all the discovered applications added to the custom application are removed from the app dashboard. 

Points to note:

  • You cannnot add a discovered application accross multiple custom applications.
  • You cannot create a custom application if all the discovered applications are already assigned to other custom application. You need to delete an existing custom application to free up the discovered applications for further composition of new custom applications.

Creating a Custom Application

You can create custom applications by adding one or more discovered applications while defining an application.

To create a custom application

1. Navigate to Applications > Dashboard, and click Define Custom App.

2. On the Define Application Screen, set the following parameters:

Name

Name of the custom application

Category

Name of the category for which all the applications related to that category will be grouped together on the application dashboard.

Select Existing Applications

Option to add virtual servers if the definition criteria are based on the licensed virtual servers monitored by NetScaler MAS.

Define Selection Criteria

Option to define application by virtual server range, or by origin server/service IP address range.

Servers Virtual Servers
You specify the server or service IP address, server name, or the port of the backend server on which the applications are running. You can enter one IP address, a range of IP addresses, or a combination of both separated by commas. For example, you can enter 10.102.29.20, 10.102.43.10-60, 10.216.43.45. You can specify either one of the following: the virtual server IP address, virtual server name, or the port of the backend server on which the applications are running. You can enter one IP address or a range of IP addresses or a combination of both separated by commas. For example, you can enter 10.102.29.20, 10.102.43.10-60, 10.216.43.45. 


3. Click OK.

Note

Currently, Application Dashboard supports only load balancing and content switching virtual servers only.

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Grouping your Applications

Grouping your applications enables you to manage and monitor them with ease. You can group your applications by selecting or creating a category when defining an application. To create or select the category, while defining the application, click on the > button next to the Category field.

Applications that are not added to any category are displayed under Others category.

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Application Dashboard

The Application Dashboard provides a holistic view of all the applications monitored by NetScaler MAS and provides key information related to all the applications. For example, the dashboard displays performance and security metrics, counters, and the health status of the applications. To display information about a particular application, select the application. And in the Summary panel, bar graphs show metrics such as app score and threat indexes, for all monitored applications.

On the Application Dashboard, you can

View your Applications

The application dashboard displays applications as nodes on a treemap, which are sized according to the data volume of the application. The color of a tile indicates the application's app score, with red denoting minimal health and blue denoting good health.

You can switch your application dashboard view to treemap or tiles by selecting one of the option form the application dashboard screen, where in you can see the applications’ details in the form of cards. By default, 250 applications are displayed on the application dashboard, to view more applications, click the next page option.

Applications are grouped by the categories that were selected when the applications were defined. Applications can be sorted or made visible by selecting application metrics from the application summary panel. For example, if you want to show the applications that have a app score in the range 20-40, select the appropriate bar graph from the App Score section of the App Summary Panel. Similarly, you can select other metrics in the App Summary Panel. 

App Summary Panel

The App Summary Panel displays all the metrics of the applications that are visible on the application dashboard. This panel enables you to sort and view the applications on the dashboard by selecting or deselecting application metrics. The App Summary Panel displays the following metrics:

Metrics

Descriptions

App Score

A scoring system that defines how an application is performing.

Threat Index

A single-digit rating system that indicates the criticality of attacks on the application, regardless of whether or not the application is protected by a NetScaler appliance.

Transactions

The range of transactions performed by the applications.

Client Connections

The number of client connections established by the applications.

Server Connections

The number of server connections established by the applications.

Request Bytes

The number of bytes requested by the applications.

Response Bytes

The number of bytes received as responses by the applications.

Packets Sent

Number of packets sent by the applications.

Packets Received

Number of packets received by the applications.

Safety Index

A single-digit rating system that indicates how securely you have configured the NetScaler instances to protect applications from external threats and vulnerabilities.

Total Attacks

Total number of attacks against the applications.

App Info Panel

The App Info panel is at the first level when you drill down on an application. It displays the key metrics and components of the application, along with its state. For example, for any selected application, the App Info panel shows the total number of virtual servers, total number of services, app score, and other information. To show the app info panel, click any application tile on the application dashboard. The App Info panel then replaces the App Summary panel.

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App Activity Investigator

The App Activity Investigator is one of the second level when you drill down from an application. You can reach the App Activity Investigator by selecting the search icon on the App Info panel, or by double-clicking the application tile on the Application Dashboard.

The App Activity Investigator displays key information such as App Score components, Errors, Events, and Anomalies.

Each of the legends are aggregated at one minute interval if the selected duration is one hour, and at one hour interval if the selected duration is one day.

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These deviations are displayed as rectangular legends on the graph. These legends are aggregated, and are color coded according to the number of events that have occurred. Blue denotes the lowest number of events and red the maximum. You can hover your mouse pointer on a legend to show details such as error type, time, and the number of events aggregated for the selected legend. You can customize the time period of the graph by selecting the time from time-period drop down.