I received an email from a colleague of mine about new functionality available in Azure which they discussed at: http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/archive/2013/03/04/windows-azure-updates-android-support-sql-reporting-services-active-directory-more.aspx. There was a reference in this to “Endpoint Monitoring” in Azure which I found interesting as I’ve spent some time blogging on the topic of monitoring Azure websites with Global Service Monitoring (GSM) in Operations Manager 2012. The blog post on that topic is available at: http://blogs.catapultsystems.com/cfuller/archive/2012/11/13/kicking-the-tires-monitoring-an-azure-application-with-gsm-azure-scom-sysctr.aspx
For background, I use my MSDN subscription to get my Azure benefits (Information available at http://blogs.catapultsystems.com/cfuller/archive/2012/10/01/creating-my-first-server-running-in-azure-using-my-msdn-subscription-windowsserver-azure.aspx?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed and http://blogs.catapultsystems.com/cfuller/archive/2013/02/28/windows-azure-%E2%80%93-get-more-benefits-from-the-msdn-subscription-windowsserver-azure.aspx).
Activating Web Endpoint Monitoring:
I used the Azure portal (https://manage.windowsazure.com) to create a new website and see if I could enable web endpoint monitoring.
Once I had a website configured in Azure there was a new option available to add “web endpoint status” as shown below.
However, this functionality (configured on the Configure screen) can only be added in reserved mode.
To enable reserved mode, I changed the website to be reserved as shown below with at least two instances configured.
Once this configuration was in place, I could now add the endpoints which are shown below. I configured two sets of tests (Test01a and Test01b) which were accessing the web site from various locations around the world.
On the dashboard page after a little bit of time the health of the web endpoint status appears:
And the details for each test can be expanded by clicking on the name of the endpoint (Test01a and Test01b in the example above).
And history can be shown for these transactions as the one below shows the last two transactions from Hong Kong, Amsterdam and Dublin.
Using the dashboard screen you can show different metrics (up to 6 at a time) on the chart and these metrics can include response times from the various endpoints which were defined:
- Overall this is pretty cool new functionality to add to Azure! Endpoint monitoring seems to do a lot of what Global Service Monitoring does in Operations Manager but it provides this natively to the Azure interface.
- From an Operations Manager perspective, this does a lot of what we can in OpsMgr but I do miss my map view (See here for an example of this view). Operations Manager also has some additional counters which we get through Operations Manager for GSM including: Time to first byte, Time to last byte and DNS Resolution Time (See here for an example of this view).