Monitoring your existing Applications

Monitoring your existing Applications

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Sometimes you want to monitor a web application that’s already installed and running – without updating the code or redeploying it. Maybe it has some kind of performance issues or is throwing exceptions and you need to apply instrumentation ASAP.

Now you can do that with Application Insights Status Monitor. Just by installing it on your server, you get performance telemetry right away, and you can add web tests too. If, later, you want to insert trace code or usage analytics, you can go back to the standard method of adding Application Insights to your app project.

[BTW - this applies to Application Insights in the Microsoft Azure Preview Portal, not the older version in Visual Studio Online – see this earlier blog for background]

To start, log in to Microsoft Azure. Click + to create an Application Insights resource.

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Choose Quick start.

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Scroll down past the first part of the Quick start blade, which is about the standard method of adding Application Insights to your app project in Visual Studio

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Now you come to the new alternative approach, which starts on your IIS server machine (whether it’s a VM or an actual box):

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Click the download link to get the Application Insights Status Monitor (the ‘agent’). Run it on the first server where your application is installed.  The first window you’ll see is the Web Platform Installer: 

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Click through all the usual stuff:

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Steps to enable a local IIS application for Application Insights:

1. Choose the local IIS application from the list on the left

2. Ensure the Application Insights resource that was created from the Azure Portal Preview is selected in the list. 

3. Click Add Application Insights

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At this point, make sure that someone is using your app. If you don’t have a mass of raving fans, just log in to it yourself and use it a bit to generate some data.

Click Open in Microsoft Azure Portal. This should get you directly back to your Application Insights blade.

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Application Insights blade shows your application’s response time, number of requests, slowest requests and failed number of requests.  Drill into these parts to see individual request metrics.

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Next steps:

· Set up web tests to monitor your application’s availability from different locations around the world

· Collect and search trace logs to help diagnose issues

· Add client side JavaScript to enable Usage Analytics

 

Useful tips

  • Re-open the Status Monitor from the system tray

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    You can also see update notifications there.

  • If you are a System Center 2012 R2 customer or using Application Insights from a Visual Studio Online account and have the Microsoft Monitoring Agent monitoring your application the Status Monitor can be used at enable the same application for Application Insights in Preview Portal.  Note: when Status Monitor includes the APM profiler this will no longer be the case and you will need to choose one. 
  • To change or create a new Application Insights resource for an application already sending telemetry data to Application Insights or for a new application choose Configure Settings

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  • Look for different Notifications in the Notifications list.  For example if an application was deployed to the server and was already enabled for Application Insights using Visual Studio Update 3 this notifications will be displayed

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  • Hello!

    Do you have information about performance degradation?

    I have high loaded Web farm, but I'm afraid connect to appinsight.

  • Vlad, early we can add setting to CSCFG if the same deployment is used in multiple environments

    <Setting name="Microsoft.AppInsights.InstrumentationKey" value="instrumentationkey” />

    Does it work in new version of Application Insights in the Microsoft Azure Preview Portal?

    Thank you for your posts. There are very interesting and useful  for us!

  • @Alexey - Application Insights does have some perf impact on your app but it is designed to be minimal.  I would recommend enabling it on your application in dev/test before production though.

    @Alexander - Application Insights within the Azure portal doesn't allow such an override as the Microsoft Monitoring Agent allowed.  it is something we will enable.

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