(re)Introducing Windows Server Monitoring

Monitoring server health has been on the minds of system administrators and network operations engineers since the early days of mainframes. Whether you’re detecting hardware failures, offering insight into pending bottlenecks, or detecting resource competition, monitoring hardware is a crucial job for people working in network operation centers.

With the advent of server farms, commodity hardware, hardware virtualization, and infrastructure as a service (IaaS), the size and complexity of the task has only increased. Tools were created to help reign in the complexity of managing a growing number of servers and heterogenous platforms in an attempt to lower the correlated time burden that managing such environments entails. Often these tools are very expensive, and their complexity only added more work for the already overloaded staff in these centers.

We understand how important server monitoring is for you, and how necessary it is to have reliable and robust tools you can count on. To this end, we’d like to announce that we have just launched a brand new version of the Windows Server Monitor with important improvements in those areas.

The Good Ol’ Days

On the Windows platform we’ve had built-in tools like Task Manager, Performance Monitoring, and Windows Management Instrumentation for years. These tools are good, and I’m sure many of you can attest to a time when you’ve used one or more to diagnose an issue. However, even the most advanced ones don’t offer a great story when it comes to central management, alerting, and operations dashboards. These features are now required for any viable monitoring product.

New Relic

New Relic’s Windows Server Monitoring pairs best-of-class operations dashboards and alerting with the accuracy and reliability of performance metrics you’ve come to trust. We provide performance data for cores, memory, disk I/O, disk usage, and network I/O. We also provide data on the top 20 processes for their memory or CPU usage to help you identify problem apps.

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Even better, with our solution you can monitor all of your servers from one web site and get alerted to potential issues. By using our new server alert policies feature you can configure a policy to have New Relic alert you when a server exceeds a threshold for a given amount of time.

Alert Policy

For instance, if any of your servers are experiencing high CPU usage, you will be alerted.

CPU Graph

Here we can see on the dashboard that CPU usage exceeded 80%.

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You can also be notified if there are network connectivity issues. Here we see an alert that New Relic has not received reports from a server in the last 5 minutes.

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Alerts can be delivered in a number of ways, including e-mail, messaging, Campfire, Hipchat, PagerDuty, or Webhook.

And we’re listening!

With this new version of Windows Server Monitoring, we’re also taking a different approach that will allow us to keep improving the product and getting new features to you more quickly.

We’ve heard from our customers that there are even more metrics that we can report that will help them gain insight into their applications and hardware and we will be adding these in the near future as we continually improve the product. As the principal engineer of the Windows Server Monitor I look forward to presenting new features that delight our customers and I hope that you look forward to the many more releases coming in the following months. Stay tuned!


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