Author: Kelly Cooke

Mastering Modal Dialog Boxes

Modal Dialog boxes are a great way to enhance the user experience and provide more detailed feedback to users than a default browser popup.

Recently, we had a challenging set of requirements from a customer. They needed a bunch of mandatory fields (easy enough with UI Policies) but there was a twist—they needed:

  • Fields that were mandatory ONLY if the person wanted to send the record for approval
  • Four fields but ONLY one of the four is mandatory (ie, put data in any one field and all four are good to go)
  • There had to be at least one record in a related list

Modal dialogs are awesome!

We developed a simple approval dialog box for a UI action to cater to these requirements. It’s a good example of how complex requirements can be distilled into a simple solution.

Have fun and happy coding!

5 Ways uberAgent Measures Your Employee Digital Experience

Measuring employee digital experience is a great way to assess how well your systems are performing. With the move to working from home there is now greater importance in making sure your IT services can support multiple device types and varying network conditions. This scenario is where uberAgent shines.

uberAgent is a user experience monitoring and endpoint security analytics product that integrates with your Splunk environment. uberAgent provides rich details on user experience whether they are on a Mac, PC, Surface, or virtual desktop like Citrix or VMware.

Here are 5 ways uberAgent can help you evaluate your employees’ end-user experience – and troubleshoot any issues.

Logon Monitoring

A logon is your first chance to make a good impression. No one likes to wait, so when users start to complain of slow logon times you need access to everyone’s details to understand what is going on. uberAgent for Splunk captures everything you will need, giving you everyone’s logon time, and where that time is being spent. You can review the details for a group of users, or drill-down to one specific user.

Logon time is broken down by the shell startup, group policy processing, profile loading, and group policy and AD logon scripts. You can compare users with different characteristics to help identify where time is being spent. If your group policy is taking too long for some users, you can drill down to see how much time each policy is taking. 

Logon Monitoring dashboard

Application Usage

Measuring the user experience of applications can benefit both application owners and end users. If users are reporting slow performance, it is important to understand what is happening on the system. Is performance poor due to the user’s memory or CPU? Is storage or bad network connectivity the issue? Could it be slow because of the many tabs open in their web browser? Or is the issue firmly with the application?

uberAgent will give you a clear picture of what is happening on each user’s device. Comparing all users can provide insights into how applications are performing throughout the day. You can view details about crashes, load times, memory/CPU/disk usage, network connectivity problems, and even understand how often the app freezes.

There are many other benefits to getting a full catalog of deployed applications. uberAgent tells you which applications are installed, and which of those are used. You can understand how many licenses will be needed for an application, and plan purchases and upgrades around usage.

Application Performance dashboard

Network Monitoring

A user’s internet connection can play a large role in the perceived performance of applications.  When users are working remotely, they may not always have access to high-speed internet connections. With uberAgent’s network monitoring capability you can easily see how much data is being transferred, to where, and exactly how long that took. Built in dashboards can show you connectivity issues broken down by user or application. You can separate latency issues in Citrix sessions and latency in Citrix hosted applications, helping identify if the user’s connection or an issue at the data centre is the cause.

Network Communications dashboard

Browser Application Experience

With the shift to cloud and web-based UIs, it is important to include web application performance in measuring overall user experience. With plugins for Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Chrome, uberAgent can delve into the browser experience without needing any code changes to the monitored apps.

Details about page load times, render time, network communications, errors, and more are available by application or web page. Measure the performance of web-based apps whether they are hosted internally or available in the cloud.

The light-weight plugin is a trusted solution with over 600,000 downloads in the Chrome store.

Browser App Performance dashboard

Experience Score Dashboard

Individual metrics are useful for troubleshooting individual issues. To get a clear picture of the overall user experience, uberAgent creates a single user experience score. The experience score is a single view that shows the current and past status of all devices, applications, and users monitored by uberAgent. It allows for proactive monitoring of your environment, reducing downtimes and costs.

The trend of this score can let you know how the user experience is going, and allow you to compare scores across different days, users, or applications.

The experience score dashboard calculates and visualises experience scores for the entire userbase, breaking the data down by category and component, highlighting components where potential issues are originating from. The dashboard also provides quick access to important KPIs like logon duration, application responsiveness, and application errors.

Experience Score dashboard

These five benefits are just the start – uberAgent has many more features built in. With the flexibility of the Splunk platform you can even extend the dashboards, alerts, and reports to suit your own requirements.

JDS has extensive experience successfully configuring uberAgent for our customers. JDS is a gold partner of uberAgent, so we can install, configure, and provide you with licenses. If you would like to take advantage of the impressive user experience monitoring capability of uberAgent, get in touch with JDS today.

JDS Appoints John Banks as National Sales Director

JDS Australia has appointed former IBM and Micro Focus executive, John Banks as the National Sales Director.  John will be responsible for all aspects of growth and customer success for JDS, reporting to Managing Director, John Bearsley.

“We have undergone a major realignment of JDS towards a practice model,” Bearsley said.  “In this new role, John will add a new edge to the team, bringing new names to the organisation, whilst expanding or engaging with our loyal customers.  He brings a wealth of industry and business growth experience to the JDS team.”

John Banks has over 35 years of ICT industry and management experience across 40 countries.  As Vice President for GBM Software in Dubai, he managed teams throughout the Middle East.  He has held IBM executive positions over 16 years in outsourcing and software divisions across Asia Pacific, and most recently served as Sales Director for Micro Focus here in Australia.

“In the current climate of ‘onshoring’, Australian companies need partners that they can rely on for delivery, but they also need trust,” said Banks. “Being an Australian-owned company staffed entirely by Aussies, JDS is now perfectly positioned to build upon the history they have developed with their customers over the last 17 years.  I am very excited to have the opportunity to be a part of this next phase of JDS’s story.”

Implementing Salesforce monitoring in Splunk

The problem

A JDS customer embarked on a project to implement Salesforce to provide their users a single user interface to fulfil their customer needs.  Their aim, to make the interface easy to use and reduce the time to process customer requests.  At the same time, the business had to ensure that their customer data stored in Salesforce was secure and to be able to detect any malicious use.

The Solution

Implementing Splunk with the Splunk Add-on for Salesforce enabled the collection of logs and objects from Salesforce using REST APIs.  This in turn, enabled proactive alerting and the creation of informative dashboards and reports to satisfy the business’ security requirements.

Scenarios detected:

  • Failed or unusual login attempts (same user tries to login from multiple IP addresses)
  • Large amounts of data extracted from Salesforce
  • Unauthorised changes in Salesforce configuration such as Connected Apps settings or Authentication Provider settings
  • Integration user account activity occurring outside of scheduled job runs
  • Privileged user activity
  • Apex code execution

All of this was achieved by setting up the required data inputs via the Splunk Add-on.  Creating lookups to enhance the alert content with meaningful information and macros for re-usability and ease of administration, then adding alerts to ensure the required conditions were notified to the operational support teams.

Splunk dashboards and reports built on Salesforce data allowed the business to easily view login patterns and analyse EventLog events and Setup Audit Trail changes.  Additionally, Salesforce data ingestion and alert summary dashboards were added to assist the support team to identify issues or delays in data ingestion as well as review the number of alerts being generated over time.

When developing any application that provides access to secure information, it’s important to not only monitor in terms of user experience, but also look at security aspects. Our customer was able to satisfy the security monitoring requirements of the business with the Splunk Add-on for Salesforce and achieved their go-live target date. The configured alerts will keep them informed of any potential security issues, giving them confidence that the platform is secure. The accompanying dashboards provide an intuitive summary of user actions, all backed by an extended data retention policy in Splunk to satisfy regulatory compliance. With SalesForce data now available in Splunk, they are planning additional use cases to not only monitor security, but get insights into how the platform is used by employees.

Why choose JDS?

JDS has experience and expertise in bringing SalesForce application data into Splunk . If your focus is on security, performance, or custom monitoring, speak to JDS today about how we can convert your SalesForce data into useful insights.