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Visualize System Monitor Data for IBM i

Learn how to view your monitor data in Navigator for i with Dawn May

My blog Getting Started with IBM i Navigator System Monitors, Revisited explained how to set up system monitors in Navigator for i.

Once you have system monitors up and running, you will want to look at the monitor data on a regular basis. There are three options:  Visualize Monitor Data, Visualize Monitor Data (new tab) and Investigate Monitor Data. This post reviews the first two, which present the same information; you simply have the option to open the Visualize Monitor Data task in the current tab or in a new tab.

The Visualize Monitor Data task displays a chart for each metric defined in your system monitor. If you have included several metrics, each will be displayed on this page. Any thresholds that are defined are also displayed. These charts update in real time, but you can toggle this option at the top of the page. The Visualize Monitor Data page looks similar to the following screen capture; you can see there is a separate chart for each metric.

Visualize monitor data graphsFigure 1. Visualize monitor data graphs

The default refresh interval is two minutes, but you can override this interval by going to the properties page for your IBM i system, as shown in the following figure. My preference is a refresh interval of one minute.

Figure 2. Properties page

The Context box can be expanded by clicking the + symbol on the right side of the box; once expanded, it looks like the image below. The main control in the Context box is the option to control the layout of the charts. By default, there are two charts per row. As I tend to define monitors with several metrics, my personal preference is three or four, so I can see more charts without scrolling.

Figure 3. Context box

An example graph is in the following figure; this screenshot shows temporary storage utilization and two thresholds have been defined.

Temporary storage utilization
Figure 4. Temporary storage utilization

You will find several controls for each individual metric. At the very top of the box is the View SQL icon; clicking on this will display the SQL statement that retrieves the metric data. 

Immediately below the metric name you will find the graph legend that shows the color for the metric itself, as well as any thresholds you defined for that metric. You can toggle the lines off and on in the graph by clicking on either the box or the text in the legend. Finally, at the bottom of the graph, you will find a slider icon and arrows on either end that allow you to scroll around the graph data. You will be able to scroll back to the beginning of the day in these graphs, since system monitor data is typically stored in a 24-hour daily collection. You can customize colors of the metrics and thresholds by clicking the Chart Properties icon that is at the very right of the Actions box at the top of the page.

At this point, there are no additional actions you can take from an individual metric; interestingly enough, if you click the Actions drop down box, it says, “Actions coming soon,” which I assume indicates that additional features will be available for system monitors in the future, perhaps similar to those that could be found in Heritage Navigator.

The next i Can post will delve into Investigate Monitor Data.

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