Refer to http://www.pearlknows.com
Database Administrators & Developers
Using Server Monitoring software to manage the
Enterprise-wide network is a common task for every Database Administrator and
Systems Administrator; in fact this type of monitoring offers extra time to
optimize other aspects in their day-to-day tasks. You might come across web
referring Would you like to reduce network downtime? Know about failure
immediately? If you would like to use such type of monitoring software
without your intervention and avoid time spending chores, then you need
SQLCentric from Pearl Knowledge Solutions Inc. This application monitors
servers such as database servers, processes, memory usage etc. During the year
2004 SQL Server Magazine has awarded this application naming Best Alerting or
Notification software and Best database monitoring software award.
The solution is easy with a simple installation of
SQLCentric application. In order to download the software the user has to fill
up few details on the web http://www.pearlknows.com/id10.html
link, which is used for information purpose and send the application updates
and will not be used for any third-party business purpose. Once you have
downloaded the Evaluation software, when you extract the file you will be
presented with a default welcome screen selection: application:
On the next screen the user will be presented with 3
options, they are Install SQLCentric version 2.0, Upgrade to SQLCentric version
2.0 from previous versions that will be useful for SQLCentric version 1.23 users
and Install client component only that can be used from a Workstation remotely:
After Next button click the
user needs enter License Keys that will be emailed when the user has filled up
the details on the initial evaluation download webpage.
if the details are entered correctly on above screen, they will be able to
advance further to install the SQLCentric application. At this stage if the
user is worried about missing this information, you can drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org in order to get the above details; this
email address can be used for customer feedback purpose as well. I feel this is
a good option to get in touch with Vendor in any case if the user has any such
reservations about the Application.
the above License details information are obtained and entered then the default
End User License Agreement (EULA) will be presented to the user, which in turn
must be agreed for further proceedings.
above 2 screens are self-explanatory information for the user where the
Application-components and web-components destination path must be provided.
The default location of Application components is under \Program files\
directory and for web components it is \Inetpub\WWWRoot\ directory.
the installation comes to the important factor, where the user must select the
Master SQL Server that installs the SQLCentric-master database such as
monitoring tables and objects. These objects will be used as run-time modules
while the monitoring is continuing. I can confirm that the user need not worry
about the size of this application-master database sizes. Please note the Application
Server must have IIS as a pre-requisite that installs server extensions. Occasionally
the user might get Unable
to create a web for the URL because its root directory
'C:\Inetpub\wwwroot\SQLCentricWeb\' falls below the root of another web in the
directory 'C:\Inetpub\wwwroot' error. In order to resolve this error
refer to http://www.pearlknows.com/id18.html#third
link on Vendors website that refers one of the Frequently Asked Questions topics.
the master SQL Server information is provided the user has to select the
Authentication mode used to connect the SQLCentric application to master SQL
Server and the default Authentication mode is Trusted.
is the last user awaiting screen to install the SQLCentric application, and
then the wizard will proceed further to install the application. Once the
application is installed then the user can refer to SQLC_ReadME_AfterINstall text
file that will be presented on end-screen.
user can find 2 user programs that are pertained to SQLCentric application
usage as above.
Usage & Monitoring
the first use of application the user is presented with the following screen
that refers about configuring the SQLCentric application using SQLCentric_ADMIN
Administration tool initial screen is as follows:
the initial lookup at this ADMIN tool I have chosen Get Servers button to
define the SQL Servers that are to be monitored by this application. This Get
Servers option is uses initially the default OSQL L option, that collects the
information about SQL Server broadcasts its existence on the network. It is up
to users discretion either to use this default option or add the detail of
each server to be monitored.
would like to add a snippet about an Update on Monitoring SQL Servers on SAN from
the Vendor as follows:
Knowledge Solutions Update:
SQLCentric can and does monitor and alert on ALL logical drives/volumes. I have
clients with clusters and SAN that have 8 volumes, for example, and it show
status for all of them. See the image below:
have joined both the screens as 1 screen above that provides error if Get
Servers is failed to obtain details about SQL Servers on the network. The
Server Detail screen is self-explanatory where the user can enter the required
information such as Email Alert when any uneven event has occurred on the
server that is enabled for SQLCentric monitoring.
Application can be configured as a run-time with additional options; on the
above screen you can see Configuration Parameters such as Max number of job
alerts, Auto-enable new servers etc. The DBA can set a privilege to
configure the application by entering the under Master SC Admin & SC Admin
Password text boxes. By default the Cluster Support on is enabled by the
Application that helps to monitor the Clustered SQL Servers automatically
without defining the active node in such cases. I would like to suggest enabling
Historic Reporting On option that provides the reporting information for back
dates, where the DBA can assess the changes happened on a particular server
that is affected with spurious errors and performance issues lately.
in this review I would like to display the Main Monitoring Page for the
SQLCentric Application Admin that gives a traffic-lights situation of servers
as a whole.
above web-page on the SQLCentric master-server can be used as an overview screen
for status-monitor purpose. If the user clicks on the Server Name option the
page features overview screen about version of SQL Server used & server configuration
information. Obviously the Green light indicates the individual service status
of that server. For instance to check whether application is monitoring or not,
on the above screen I have stopped SQLAgent service of ProjectDBA SQL Server
deliberately and near-instantly this Red light is displayed on the master
monitoring page. This gives the user to react to the problem without any delay.
Also if one of the scheduled jobs has failed the SQL Agent status will be
displayed as Red, and only clicking on further the web page allows to drill
further down to check whether it is a service or job failure. This sometimes
may force instant reaction of the Admin to check the status and Vendor has
explained this feature as that jobs
disabled do not show up as a failure on the main status page,nor is the user
alerted. This did not seem to be something that many testers wanted. If a job
is disabled, its status is usually not checked. I
feel this explanation justifies the feature and such deliberate alert will give
wide option to investigate the issue further.
procedure is enabled on SQLCentric application is provided only SMTP server is
available and this can be installed along with IIS application. The alerts are
emailed each time the application is run and a failed status is encountered at
that point of time. IN order to enable the monitoring functionality by
SQLCentric the user can use the Schedule option from ADMIN tool to provide
historic information during busy and easy times on SQL Servers within their
SQLCentric and what does it have to offer?
An intuitive administration module allows the user to
manage servers, groups, & email operators, configure run-time parameters
and alert thresholds.
Max Job Alerts will allow the user to set the number of
times to be alerted for a particular failed job; it will then reset the alert
for the following run time of the job.
cluster aware, and its built-in cluster failover support will monitor and alert
you when a cluster fails over from one node to another.
Scheduler Manager will let the user manage the run-time schedule of SQLCentric
right from the Administration Module.
With the ability to authenticate monitored servers via SQL
Authentication, Windows, or Mixed, users will be able to monitor SQL Servers in
Non-Trusted Domains, DMZ/firewalls, and literally SQL Servers all around the
There are many
more and you can find about them from http://www.pearlknows.com/id1.html
The good news
is the SQLCentric version 2.0 applications now supports SQL Server 2005
installations, which is add-on concept for latest happening in SQL Server
I found the
support during the Evaluation period and post sales as useful and instant with
no frills attached, I would like to appreciate Robert Pearl patience in this
situation. I have realized why the Vendor has provided initial Customer entry
details to download Evaluation SQLCentric application, there is always a
follow-up email about how I was getting on with the Product and to address any
specific need I have at that point of time. More information about Customer
Feedback and after sales support can be obtained from http://www.pearlknows.com/index.html
conclusion I feel, Servers & Networks are becoming critical components of
business success and Customer satisfaction, irrespective of small or big terms.
When a component on network or server fails and application fails to
communicate information the Monitoring software tools reduce such outages
instantly and allow business to operate as usual to prevent the loss. I categorize
SQLCentric as one of this featured tool that can help an Organisation to
monitor the SQL Server estate without worrying about huge budgets or look for
cost cutting measures. I felt the SQLCentric application is useful network
monitoring software that reduces the time and money spent on network/server
management and administration, a commercial product that is available for a
30-day free evaluation which is good enough to understand what it says on the
tin. SQLCentric offers a range of monitoring application in the areas of SQL
Server monitoring, application status, servers hardware & network status
monitoring at affordable price point. The tool is catered to serve smaller
networks to bigger networks that can start with these tools from Pearl
Knowledge Solutions Inc. and can be migrated to the fully licensed SQLCentric
version. With its simple architecture and easy configuration of collaborating
point product, Pearl Knowledge Solution offers many Organizations and its
Customers to deploy an integrated Monitoring software solution at highly
Shyam K Jayanty, SQL Server MVP