Interpret and Manage Alarms

An important role of Analytics is to alert you when key resources within your GIS infrastructure stop functioning. For key servers or services, you can configure alarm notifications to be sent directly to phones via SMS or email so that you can act quickly to restore systems that are down.

Alarm notifications are optional and configurable but all alarms always appear in the Reports application.

The Summary tab of the Reports application is arranged specifically so that you see the most urgent alarms when you first open the application. Most of the data in the Status tab is also arranged by resource and level of urgency to help you troubleshoot and get to the root cause of any problems within your system.

Similarly, the navigation, links and interactivity of each part of the Reports application is designed to make it easy to drill down deeper into your GIS system to quickly get to detailed information about an alarm and it's source.

Alarms and Errors in Analytics

An alarm and an error in Analytics are not equivalent, but have a very specific meaning based on how the information is collected.

Investigate an Alarm

When you are troubleshooting an alarm, you are likely to respond with a sequence of actions similar to those outlined below. The example is not an exact procedure but gives some sense of the steps you can take to find the source of a problem.

If you are set up to receive alarm notifications on your phone or email, you are likely to begin the process after you receive either a text message (SMS) or an email notifying you of the alarm.

An example of how to investigate an alarm:

  1. Open the Reports application and examine the Summary tab.

    Notice that it shows an alarm for ArcGIS Server. Something is obviously wrong.


  2. Click the orange Alarm block.

    The Status tab opens showing the Content Panel where the ArcGIS Server Alarms and the Services Alarms are listed in table Content Panels.

    First check the ArcGIS Service Alarms to see if there is an issue with the ArcGIS Server itself. In this case, there are no alarms on the Server itself.

    Next, check the Services Alarms. In this case, there is an alarm on a service.

    The source of the alarms could be one of several possibilities.

  3. To go to the corresponding ArcGIS Service, click the link listed in the table for that alarm entry. The icon beside the link indicates that the link goes to an external web page.

    If the content page in ArcGIS Service opens in a new browser tab, it indicates that the Service is working and it is likely the source is slow or the service is not configured to collect data correctly.

    If the content page does not open, it is likely that the service is not available.

    Even if the ArcGIS map service page loads successfully, it may load in an invalid state, for example, the exported map image is broken. A broken map indicates that something is wrong with the service on ArcGIS Server, and you need to investigate the service itself.

Clear, Silence, and Enable Alarms

In Geocortex Analytics you can do any of the following with Alarms:

When you clear or silence an alarm in the System Active Alarms table, it disappears from the table rather than shows as a silenced alarm. If the alarm persists, then the alarm appears in the Active Alarms table once more once Analytics fires the alarm again.
If you silence an alarm in an alarm state and you then enable it, it returns to a non-alarm state

until another alarm is triggered. So when the silence period expires, the alarm does not return to the Active Alarms table until another alarm is fired.

To clear an alarm:

  1. To clear an alarm once, click the down arrow beside the alarm icon, and then click Clear Alarm.

    The alarm disappears from the Active Alarms list.

To silence or enable an alarm:

  1. To silence an alarm for a specific time period, click the down arrow beside the alarm icon, and then select a time period that you want the alarm silenced.

  2. Click OK.

    The alarm icon changes to show that the alarm is silenced.

  3. To enable a silenced alarm, click the down arrow beside the silenced alarm icon.

    The pop-up shows you how much time remains of the silenced state.

  4. Click Enable Alarm.

    The alarm returns to the no-alarm state:

    If the alarm conditions persists when Analytics fires again, the alarm returns to the alarm state:

  5. To extend the silenced state, select a longer time period, and then click Ok.

Disabled Alarms

Analytics does not, and should not, fire service alarms that have been deliberately disabled. Analytics alarms do distinguish if a service is intentionally disabled not unintentionally down. The alarm is checking for the services that are unintentionally down and will only fire alarms on services that are supposed to be up but are not.

Referenced services alarms and content alarms are not enabled by default and so no information about them is collected unless the service is manually enabled and the alarms configured on the Services Settings tab in Configuration. If the service has not been enabled, the disabled icon is shown in the first column of the table in the alarms panel.

Even if a service alarm is disabled, general information about the service and their alarms, remains in the panels, for example, the service name, the alarm name and alarm type, but none of the information collected or updated.

Alarms for the following Status panels must be manually configured if you want alarms to be fired on their services or content:

To manually enable an alarm in the Service Settings:

  1. Open Analytics and click Configuration.
  2. Expand the resource sidebar to navigate to the applicable resource.
  3. Select the Service Settings tab.
  4. In the table, click the square in the Enabled column beside service you want to enable.
  5. To optionally override the default collection interval click the Override Global Interval and then type in the Collection Interval you want to apply.
  6. To optionally enable an alarm on the service, if the global alarm is enabled, select the square in the Override Global Alarms column.
  7. Click the square in the Failed Response Alarm column and the Response Time Alarm column.
  8. In the Response Time column, type in the number of seconds that you feel is long enough to wait for a response from this service before firing an alarm.
  9. If you want to receive Email or SMS notifications, click those squares and enter the information required.

To manually disable an alarm in the Service Settings table:

  1. Open Analytics and click Configuration.
  2. Expand the resource sidebar to navigate to the applicable resource.
  3. Select the Service Settings tab.
  4. If the global alarms are set and you want to disable an alarm on the service, select the square in the Override Global Alarms column but do NOT select any of the other alarm checkboxes.
  5. To disable collection of information on the service as a whole, clear the square in the Enabled column.


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Documentation Version 1.4