Azure Website 101: Endpoint Monitoring

To make any successful B2C business, the organization must have to be in touch with its customer and one of the best way to be in touch is to build a website. Thats why every B2C organization wants to make sure that their site is accessible from all around the world 24×7. Now, how will you make sure that your client’s website is up and available not just from one location but from different country of different geolocaiton as well?

If you have said “Ping” then you are absolutely right. You have to ping the site from different places to check if your website is returning “200” as its status code. You have a series of option from free to paid service. System Center Global Service Monitor in System Center 2012 Operations Manager is another good option to monitor availability, performance and reliability of your website.

But If you are using azure then you are lucky to have everything right at home. All the features that you might need are probably already in Azure. Website endpoint monitoring is one of them. Endpoint monitoring lets you monitor the availability of HTTP or HTTPS endpoints from geo-distributed locations.

Heads Up :

The only caveat that it has is that Endpoint monitoring is only available with Reserved Mode instances !

To get started, visit the old portal first and choose the website of your particular interest then go the configuration tab and scroll down to the monitoring section.

The monitoring section allows you to add up to two URLs for monitoring. Add a friendly name for each URL and select the locations around the world from where you wish to monitor your sites availability.  Each of the provided URL can be ping from up to 3 test locations. After you have saved the configuration, the Web Site’s URL will be tested periodically (in every 5 minutes) from each of the configured locations.

To see the results of the tests select your website from the new portal and you will see a nice visualization on the dashboard.

Azure_Website_101_Endpoint_Monitoring_02

Availability is monitored using HTTP response codes, and response time. A monitoring test fails if the HTTP response code is greater than or equal to 400 or if the response takes more than 30 seconds. An endpoint is considered available if its monitoring tests succeed from all the specified locations.

Note :

You can see the last five tests from each location but can’t currently see any history past that.

If you want you can also configure and set your desired metric to be shown in chart from various endpoints.

Azure_Website_101_Endpoint_Monitoring_03

 The dashboard will periodically update the status of monitoring result that you can drill into for further investigation. This is indeed good to have some live status of your ping result but this is not feasible to monitor this dashboard 24×7. One thing that you are probably saying is “What good it could be if it can’t notify in extreme failure?

Well, in the  world of azure you are blessed with enormous feature. You can certainly create a rule to send you notification if certain threshold meets the bar. For example you can add rule to send you mail if the uptime is greater than a value % you expected, or when your visitor getting a certain HTTP status code as response.

To do so, click the Add alert option from the Metric blade.

Azure_Website_101_Endpoint_Monitoring_04

Clicking the Add alert option will open up a new blade from where you can set the limits (with condition) and the email address where you expecting to get alert notification.

Azure_Website_101_Endpoint_Monitoring_05

Summary:

End point monitoring is one of the cool feature that you should implement in order to make sure you site is accessible from around the world and even if its get down for any particular reason, you get the alert notification on your email asap so that you can take steps to fix it for the production site.

Good Read:

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