• How SysKit Monitor helps admins do their job better and in less time (Advertiser Post)

    June 10, 2019

    Vendor Articles

    Server Performance Monitoring- How and why?

    Nowadays, with ever-growing server environments, there is no need to preach the value of server performance monitoring. Windows servers, with or without Citrix installed on top of them, must be kept in check to ensure optimal performance and maximum user satisfaction. Besides server performance, there are a lot of other important tasks for any system admin such as monitoring user activity, application usage, license management, server inventory, auditing, and the list keeps on going and going.

    This is where SysKit came in and set out to create a tool with a feature set so wide that it can help in all those areas, and much more. One advanced tool with a simple interface that saves hours in an admin’s day and makes exhausting tasks simple, but remains intuitive and user-friendly. This is the story of how SysKit Monitor was born. SysKit is the provider of tools for management, monitoring, auditing, and administration for Windows Server, Citrix, SharePoint, & Office 365. SysKit has much experience with admin’s troubles and knows exactly how to approach this problem.

    Why is server performance monitoring important?

    Poor server performance can have a major impact on a business. A server’s bad performance is a root cause of sudden session disconnections, slow logins, slow application startups, screen freezes, and general usage lag. Those problems will not only irritate and slow down users, but it also decreases their productivity, costing the company much money from time lost. The “why” is obvious to all admins but “how” is by far a harder question.

    How to monitor server performance?

    For large environments, the only viable way to keep track of performance is to use a third-party tool, and this is the part where SysKit Monitor comes in. SysKit Monitor is an agentless tool that allows you to monitor servers by using Windows API so there is no need to install third-party software on your Citrix servers (in case you use Citrix) and potentially influence the performance even more. SysKit monitors all your servers from a single console, and you can easily separate many servers into logical server groups if you have, e.g., UAT, DEV, or production farms or divide servers by a different type.

    How SysKit Monitor helps admins do their job better and in less time

    Performance counters and services overview

    SysKit Monitor constantly monitors every existing performance counter, and if CPU, memory, or any other performance counter reaches warning or critical levels, SysKit instantly notifies the admin via email. This enables admins to fix the problem before it affects the end users quickly. To make performance monitoring even easier, SysKit provides you with monitoring templates such as a Citrix monitoring template, Hyper-V template, and so on, helping you track your Citrix server’s health even if you’re not sure what to monitor. SysKit Monitor shows real-time, as well as historical performance values, so it’s easy to spot trends and overall performance or troubleshoot a specific timestamp causing downtime or poor performance.

    Intelligent Alerts
    Intelligent Alerts

    Application usage can affect server performance

    If an admin doesn’t know how their users use applications in their environment, they can’t say that they have a complete grasp on their farm’s performance. SysKit uses application usage stats from two perspectives:

    1. How application usage affects the server resources?
    2. Which applications are being used by the employees and for how long?

    App Usage data is crucial for admins so they can optimize resources and ensure smooth sailing for all users. This data isn’t only important for admins; it’s also used by management to overview managers and how they spend their time.

    SysKit Monitor tracks application performance on your Citrix Virtual Apps Server, Remote Desktop Session Host, or VMWare Horizon Server and shows you CPU usage for each application and user, memory usage for each app, IO Reads and IO writes, and so on. With this info, you can identify which application causes poor performance easily.

    App Usage Summary
    App Usage Summary

    Another invaluable feature of SysKit Monitor is the ability to generate application usage information for each user. With SysKit, you know the exact time a particular user connected to a server and when the user started the specific app, see which application users use the most, and track the number of concurrent applications during user sessions.

    Let’s not forget about the impact of user activity

    Many admins don’t like to play cops and monitor their users, but it’s extremely important to know who is doing what in your environment. You must pay attention to both individual users and have an overview of all user connections.

    Admins have to be able to know exactly when a user accessed your environment, wherever they are connecting from, and in which activity state did they spend their time (active, idle, or disconnected), how much traffic they made, and so on. SysKit Monitor does exactly this and more. There is even a billing report with actual working hours, which shows the return on your investment for each user.

    When monitoring all user connections, an admin can come to the valuable conclusion such as what times are busiest, which helps you to spread users across different servers and grant additional resources.

    Do you know who, at what time, and from which IP users use your Remote Desktop Gateway to access your corporate network from the outside? Well, you should, and SysKit Monitor creates a report that measures, tracks, and monitors Remote Desktop Gateway sessions. To top it off, you can track these connections historically, as well as in real time.

    Key Takeaways

    Administering any Citrix environment, and much larger environments is a painful and complex task. Ensuring the optimal performance, user satisfaction, and smooth sailing is challenging work for any admin, and that’s why the next logical step is to get a tool that does the heavy lifting for you. SysKit Monitor is a reasonably priced tool that even offers a free trial so you can see what a huge help it can be with performance monitoring, user activity, application usage, auditing and pretty much everything else an admin needs. Download a free trial and see for yourself.

    About Carl Webster

    Webster is a Sr. Solutions Architect for Choice Solutions, LLC and specializes in Citrix, Active Directory and Technical Documentation. Webster has been working with Citrix products for many years starting with Multi-User OS/2 in 1990.

    View all posts by Carl Webster

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