Posts tagged: PowerTrace

Zen and the Art of Usage Tracking

From the revamed slidedeck division. If you are new to this blog, you may have missed a posting that I did almost two years ago, called Zen and the Art of PowerTrace. This article was about how to get the most out of the advanced tracking module (known back then as PowerTrace), built into the Enterprise version of the RES Workspace Manager.

With the help of my good friend Sascha Maier, I was back then able to create a slide-deck using real-world screenshots of a live customer environment with thousands of users, showing you the true power of Usage Tracking unleashed. Not an easy feat to replicate in a lab environment, I’m sure you’ll agree. As RES recently changed product names, logos etc. I thougth this would be a great time to re-introduce the revamped slide-deck with updated terminology and graphics.

If you are new to RES products: This slidedeck will teach you how to get the most out of Usage Tracking, which is an extensive logging apparatus, essentially linking all the user does in a session, what apps are being used for how long, on what devices, online/offline status, resource consumption, and much much more. Usage Tracking will answer the following and many other questions:

  • What’s going on right now?
  • What did a certain user do at a certain time?
  • Who’s been doing things they’re not supposed to do?
  • Who’s been editing a certain [type of] docment in a given department?
  • Web activity of a user or department
  • What’s the Top-10 usage of applications and websites?
  • What’s the daily maximum users on my terminal servers?

If you are a Veteran Workspacer, throw out the old PowerTrace slide deck and click below to download the updated presentation. Note: The screenshots still say PowerTrace here and there. Eventually I’ll get around to grabbing new screenshots when the viewer changes someday.

In either case, be sure to read the speakernotes section of the Powerpoint presentation as it contains the entire talk track and a lot of useful information about the capabilities of this system. In addition to this presentation, be sure to read article RG007 on the sizing of the Usage Tracking Database and RG02D about splitting the Usage tracking log data away from the Workspace Manager 2011 configuration datastore.

 

Click on the slidedeck on the right to download:

 

 

 

Got Skeletons?

skeleton_in_the_closetAnimated, Gears, boxA technote was published in the technote library in late March. This one will help you clean up any embarrasing log entries, which you need to clean out for one reason or another. Suppose you are running PowerTrace with WebTrace enabled in your environment and you or somebody else manage to surf to a webpage which everybody just rather forget about, then you need to find a way to surgically remove the skeletons from the closet, as you may want to retain the remainer of your PowerTrace logs.

In order to do this, you need to have the proper credentials for the PowerFuse datastore.

The article available here, will show you how to deal with this problem. A nifty buildingblock for Wisdom has also been included in the article.

Reducing the size of the PowerFuse database

Animated, Gears, boxA brand new article has been posted to the Technote Library. This time we’re diving into the PowerTrace tables. Being new to PowerFuse, some will be inclined to switch on everything, including PowerTrace turned to the Maxx, resulting in a potentially very unwanted huge heap of logdata and perhaps even a slow performing DBMS too.

This article explains how to both cure that situation if things have gone megabad, but also how to prevent it from happening in the future. 

Click here to read the full article.

Zen and the Art of PowerTrace

animated bookA  nice presentation shared by one of the friendly folks over at RES (Me!). This one is called Business Value of PowerTrace. It essentially shows you all the cool things which you can find out about your organization, using PowerTrace, a component of PowerFuse 2008 Enterprise edition. Please be sure to check the speaker notes on the PowerPoint, as there is a ton of valuable information in there. Some of the things you can discover are:

  • What’s a certain user been doing at a certain time?
  • Who’s been doing things they’re not supposed to do?
  • Who’s been editing a certain [type of] docment in a given department?
  • Web activity of a user or department
  • What’s the Top-10 usage of applications and websites?
  • What’s the daily maximum users on my terminal servers?

These and other questions are answered in the presentation. Enjoy: Icon, RarFile

Please note: This article is outdated as there’s a new presentation/article to replace it. Please go here to read it.

PowerTrace DBsize Estimator

Icon, calculatorThis is kinda cool. This estimation tool will let you take a qualified guess at how big your PowerFuse database will be, approximatly. Now – before you jump in to it, here’s a brief reality check. The calculator only deals with the big tables in the PowerFuse datastore, namely the PowerTrace tables. These are the ones that matter when it comes to size. The rest of the database would rarely exceed 100 Meg anyway. Just to be clear, the following items are not taken into consideration:

  • Custom Resources
  • Uploaded .ADM files
  • Desktop and Screensaver bitmaps
  • Odd-sized icons
  • Other stuff you upload into the database.

The PowerTrace engine in PowerFuse will create database records the moment a user starts an application or launches a website. When the user closes the app or website, the record create earlier is updated with and end-timestamp. Each record created by PowerTrace is 512 bytes in size.

The calculator is an external spreadsheet stored at EditGrid.com, where one can make online excel calculators. Have a look at the calculator by clicking on the preview image below:

Scr, powertrace calc