monitoring web applications

Web Applications Monitoring Guide

Gert Svaiko Developer Tips, Tricks & Resources

Companies are juggling multiple servers, applications, transactions, and web services in the modern digital world. This brings out the difficulty of keeping track of it all. Here’s where web applications monitoring steps in and gives an in-depth overview of all applications’ performance.

Let’s take a step back and dig into the basics of web application monitoring.


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What is web applications monitoring?

One of the most common monitoring services you hear about is server monitoring. While it focuses on the website and database performance, it doesn’t cover your running applications. Therefore, cannot accurately pinpoint potential faults. Here’s where web applications monitoring comes in.

The main goal of web applications monitoring is keeping the apps’ performance and well-being under close inspection. It also offers a more efficient way of identifying and diagnosing potential bottlenecks, issues, and abnormalities with the applications. By being on top of any problems your apps might experience, you can react and solve them quickly. In return, this ensures a continuous user experience for site users.

Besides an overview of the entire system, you can use web application monitoring to pinpoint the specific troublesome areas and direct your focus towards fixing them. This offers a high-level view as well as accurate detection of problems.

When to consider using web applications monitoring tools?

While there isn’t a magic number for applications before individual monitoring becomes cumbersome, some indicators suggest using web applications monitoring tools as a potential time-saver. An application performance management tool, like Stackify Retrace, helps developers proactively identify more issues in QA and continuously improve applications in production environments.

Slow App Response Times

Slow response times can kill off a lot of business if they’re extended to long periods. It can affect the daily operations of your business as well as the user’s experience.

If locating the root causes of responsiveness issues becomes a worrisome effort and puts too much strain on your team, it’s a clear sign that web applications monitoring can help you create a more efficient bottleneck detector. 

Web applications monitoring allows developers to efficiently detect problems and get things in working order with less time spent locating the exact issue.

Retrace’s custom dashboards provide optimal performance information as it presents the impact made by its application’s users. Use “slow pages” to monitor factors that affect page load time. This report displays the top five actions with slow loading times. Get quick insights into the slow pages including methods, the number of hits, average time and satisfaction rating to ensure proper troubleshooting.

Unpredictable Server Overloads

Strains on your server can cause massive problems, from slow responsiveness to going offline — it isn’t always easy to determine the exact cause. 

While web traffic peaks are often the primary cause of a server’s overload, they aren’t the only cause. There have been situations in which plugin installation and updates overloaded WordPress servers, leading to them crashing. Going with a managed WordPress host can help in this regard, but the response to the issue may not be fast enough, depending on the provider. For a more immediate solution, you can opt for a web application monitor like Stackify Retrace that will effortlessly help pinpoint issues like the previously mentioned case and let you know the cause of your server overload. 

Use Retrace to track and monitor all key application and server metrics in one place to uncover actionable insights and receive automated alerts and notifications.

Also, if you don’t have specific alerts in place that notify you of the upcoming problem, the reaction can come too late. This is where web applications monitoring can also help by sending signals of depleting resources ahead of time to give you a chance to react quicker by solving a problem or adding more resources.

Slow Identification of Problems

While sometimes a problem is visible, it can also take a lot of time to identify its root causes. With an increasing number of servers, databases, and applications, manually going through all of the possible locations becomes like finding a needle in a haystack.

In today’s fast-paced world, speed is everything. A serious problem can take down your application or site and cause significant disruptions to your business. Web applications monitoring makes it quicker for you to identify the root causes of a problem so you can direct resources into fixing issues rather than identifying them in the first place.

Effectiveness of web applications monitoring

Web applications monitoring can save time, increase efficiency, and lower costs down the line. It’s a straightforward way to automate bug-finding processes and keep your applications’ performance in check.

Overall, the web application monitoring:

  • Increases productivity and efficiency
  • Automatically monitors your applications in real-time
  • Creates a streamlined process between fault identification and solution
  • Mitigates downtime risks
  • Reduces costs

Let’s break those benefits down some more.

Real-time monitoring

Your applications are relatively vulnerable to development errors. Using web application monitoring, your apps are automatically surveilled in real-time by the monitoring software. If any problems occur, software can detect changes immediately and pinpoint the causes leading to the problem.

You can also set up custom escalation processes based on the fault detection specifics to further automate the real-time monitoring effect.

Use Stackify Retrace’s Real User Monitoring [RUM] to monitor front-end and back-end code together. With RUM, accurately locate and resolve bottlenecks faster and decrease page load times for a more intuitive experience.

Customized Overview

While the software monitors your applications and servers proactively, you can keep an eye on the key performance metrics at a high level. Furthermore, you can also create custom metrics based on your business’s needs, enabling you to narrow in on the issues you’re keen to spot.

Creating a customized overview gives your applications another layer of security and decreases the time it takes to solve a performance issue – minimizing downtime.

Notifications

While in-person monitoring is cumbersome on resources, using software enables developers to actually write code instead of troubleshooting. By setting up notifications, you can be sure the right people are notified, making the process much quicker.

Retrace gives you the ability to see all active alerts in a single location under the Alerts screen. Here, you can see all active alerts grouped for easy visibility across the entire install base, and you can respond to the alerts from here as well if you wish. 

Log history

Automated logs make it easier to take a step back and see what caused a problem in the first place. It’s another automated step so your team can focus on solving the issue rather than creating logs or writing a dedicated piece of code to retain event information later.

With Retrace’s centralized logging platform, access all of your application logs from a single place across all applications and servers. Integrated errors and logs allow you to get the full context about errors that show up in your logs. Structured logging makes your logging smarter by logging objects and searchable properties.

Lower Costs

By creating an automated process for identifying and tracking issues, your developers can divert their attention elsewhere. This results in higher efficiency. Therefore, switching to a monitoring software solution brings about clear ROI, considering the direct and indirect expenses of in-house solutions.

Web Applications Monitoring Software Mitigates Risks and Boosts the Fault-Solving Process

Realizing that your applications aren’t functioning correctly, finding the faulty general area, pinpointing the root cause, and solving it takes a lot of time. Web applications monitoring helps you mitigate the risks by doing real-time tracking and creating an overview of the performance. This lets you know if there’s an issue and enables you to access previous fault patterns.

It’s an efficient way to manage risks concerning slow response times and potential server overloads. It leads to quicker identification of root causes.
Retrace’s powerful combination of APM, error tracking, log management, and application metrics creates an unparalleled ability to monitor your applications. Try your free, 14 day Retrace trial!