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uberAgent 3.7: SMB Performance, Splunk 6.5, Windows Server 2016

We are happy to announce the newest version of our user experience and application performance monitoring product. uberAgent 3.7 adds full support for brand new Splunk 6.5 and Windows Server 2016. Of course it works happily on Windows 10 version 1607 (anniversary update), too, as well as any relevant older version of Windows.

uberAgent 3.7 monitors SMB performance, tracks application crashes and displays boot activity per process (more information below). We also added the ability to send the collected data directly to Splunk’s HTTP Event Collector without involving Splunk’s Universal Forwarder (which can optionally still be used).

For a full list of all improvements and bugfixes please consult the change log. As always, upgrading is highly recommended.

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SMB IOPS and Latency per Network File Share

In enterprise end-user computing SMB is one of the most important protocols. Whenever you map a drive or access a UNC path, SMB is being used to connect to a file share. Home and group directories are accessed over SMB. Folder redirection, a popular technology for reducing the size of the user profile, relies on SMB.

Not surprisingly, SMB performance is critical for user experience. As Aaron Parker, Shawn Bass and Helge Klein have shown in a series of conference talks and blog posts bad SMB performance severely impacts end user experience and breaks applications.

Have you ever seen “inexplicable” hangs where an application’s UI became unresponsive for seconds or even minutes on end? The root cause could very well have been an overloaded file server experiencing the occasional CPU spike. But how to prove that?

uberAgent 3.7 has just what you need. For every SMB connection it measures how long it takes for reads and writes to complete (latency), how many read and write request are issued per second (IOPS) and how much data is transferred. Armed with that knowledge it is easy to determine when and where folder redirection caused application hangs. Even hours and days after the fact.

Application Crashes and Hangs

Whenever applications crash or hang, end users lose time and the business loses money. Not every single crash can be analyzed, so IT needs to be able to find out if specific machines are affected more than others. Or is it happening in certain branch offices only? What about application versions – maybe that new patch has side effects? And finally, the user: it is not at all unheard of that some users are plagued with crashes while others are not.

uberAgent’s high-definition metrics help you answer all of the above questions. And the advanced statistical capabilities of the underlying Splunk platform make analyzing correlations a breeze.

Process Activity During Machine Boot

The duration of a PC’s full system boot depends mainly on two factors: the number of processes started during the boot phase and the disk IO generated per process. Reducing the boot duration requires in-depth knowledge of what is running and how expensive it is in terms of performance. uberAgent helps with that.

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uberAgent now displays all processes that were active during a Windows boot along with their respective lifetime, command line and disk IO count and volume, to name just a few. One glance at the Single Boot dashboard tells you exactly how much each application or service impacts boot performance.

About uberAgent

uberAgent is a Windows user experience analytics and application performance monitoring product. Its highlights include detailed information about boot and logon duration (showing why and when boots/logons are slow), network latency per target and process, process startup duration, application usage metering, browser performance per website and remoting protocol insights.

About vast limits

vast limits develops enterprise-grade tools for administrators. These include uberAgent (user experience and application performance monitoring), Delprof2 (user profile deletion), SetACL and SetACL Studio (permissions management). Our tools have been downloaded more than half a million times and are used by enterprises worldwide.

Our founder, Helge Klein, is an experienced consultant and developer. As a consultant he has worked in Windows and Citrix projects for large corporations. As a developer he architected the user profile management product whose successor is now available as Citrix Profile Management. In 2009 Helge received the Citrix Technology Professional (CTP) award, in 2011 he was nominated a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP), in 2014 he was a Splunk Revolution Award Winner, in 2015 he became a VMware vExpert. Helge frequently presents at conferences and user group events like Citrix Synergy, Splunk .conf, BriForum or E2EVC.

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