Dashboard

In Network Operation Centers NOC an overview about issues in the network is important and often described as dashboards. Large networks have people (Operator) with different responsibilities and the dashboard should show only information for a given monitoring context. Network or Server operator have a need to customize or filter information on the dashboard. A dashboard as an At-a-glance overview is also often used to give an entry point for more detailed diagnosis through the information provided by the monitoring system. The Surveillance View allows to reduce the visible information by selecting rows, columns and cells to quickly limit the amount of information to navigate through.

Components

The dashboard is built with five components:

  • Surveillance View: Allows to model a monitoring context for the dashboard.

  • Alarms: Shows unacknowledged alarms which should be escalated by an operator.

  • Notifications: Shows outstanding and unacknowledged notifications sent to engineers.

  • Node Status: Shows all ongoing network outages.

  • Resource Graph Viewer: Shows performance time series reports for performance diagnosis.

The following screenshot shows a configured dashboard and which information are displayed in the components.

01 dashboard overall
Figure 1. Dashboard with configured surveillance view and current outage

The following section describe the information shown in each component. All other components display information based on the Surveillance View.

Surveillance View

The Surveillance View has multiple functions.

  • Allows to model the monitoring context and shows service and node outages in compact matrix view.

  • Allows to limit the number of information in the dashboard by selecting rows, columns and cells.

You can select columns, rows, single cells and of course all entries in a Surveillance View. Please refer to the Surveillance View Section for details on how to configure Surveillance Views.

02 dashboard surveillance view
Figure 2. The Surveillance View forms the basis for the dashboard page.

Alarms

The Alarms component gives an overview about all unacknowledged alarms with a severity higher than Normal(1). Acknowledged alarms will be removed from the responsibility of the operator. The following information are shown in:

03 dashboard alarms
Figure 3. Information displayed in the alarms component
  1. Node: Node label of the node the alarm is associated

  2. Severity: Severity of the alarm

  3. UEI: Shows the UEI of the alarm

  4. Count: Number of alarms deduplicated by the reduction key of the alarm

  5. Last Time: Time for the last occurrence of the alarm

  6. Log Msg: The log message from the event which is the source for this alarm. It is specified in the event configuration file in <logmsg />

The Alarms component shows the most recent alarms and allows the user to scroll through the last 100 alarms.

Notifications

To inform people on a duty schedule notifications are used and force action to fix or reconfigure systems immediately. In Meridian it is possible to acknowledge notifications to see who is working on a specific issue. The dashboard should show outstanding notifications in the NOC to provide an overview and give the possibility for intervention.

04 dashboard notifications
Figure 4. Information displayed in the Notifications component
  1. Node: Label of the monitored node the notification is associated with

  2. Service: Name of the service the notification is associated with

  3. Message: Message of the notification

  4. Sent Time: Time when the notification was sent

  5. Responder: User name who acknowledged the notification

  6. Response Time: Time when the user acknowledged the notification

The Notifications component shows the most recent unacknowledged notifications and allows the user to scroll through the last 100 Notifications.

Node Status

An acknowledged alarm doesn’t mean necessarily the outage is solved. To give an overview information about ongoing Outages in the network, the dashboard shows an outage list in the Node Status component.

05 dashboard outages
Figure 5. Information displayed in the Node Status component
  1. Node: Label of the monitored node with ongoing outages.

  2. Current Outages: Number of services on the node with outages and total number of monitored services, e.g. with the natural meaning of "3 of 3 services are affected".

  3. 24 Hour Availability: Availability of all services provided by the node calculated by the last 24 hours.

Resource Graph Viewer

To give a quick entry point diagnose performance issues a Resource Graph Viewer allows to navigate to time series data reports which are filtered in the context of the Surveillance View.

06 dashboard resource graphs
Figure 6. Show time series based performance with the Resource Graph Viewer

It allows to navigate sequentially through resource graphs provided by nodes filtered by the Surveillance View context and selection and shows one graph report at a time.

Advanced configuration

The Surveillance View component allows to model multiple views for different monitoring contexts. It gives the possibility to create special view as example for network operators or server operators. The dashboard shows only one configured Surveillance View. To give different users the possibility using their Surveillance View fitting there requirements it is possible to map a logged in user to a given Surveillance View used in the dashboard.

The selected nodes from the Surveillance View are also aware of User Restriction Filter. If you have a group of users, which should see just a subset of nodes the Surveillance View will filter nodes which are not related to the assigned user group.

The dashboard is designed to focus, and therefore also restrict, a user’s view to devices of their interest. To do this, a new role was added that can be assigned to a user that restricts them to viewing only the dashboard if that is intended.

Using the Dashboard role

The following example illustrates how this dashboard role can be used. For instance the user drv4doe is assigned the dashboard role. So, when logging in as drv4doe, the user is taking directly to the dashboard page and is presented with a custom dashboard based on the drv4doe Surveillance View definition.

Step 1: Create an user

The following example assigns a dashboard to the user "drv4doe" (a router and switch jockey) and restricts the user for navigation to any other link in the Meridian WebUI.

07 dashboard add user
Figure 7. Creating the user drv4doe using the Meridian WebUI

Step 2: Change Security Roles

Now, add the ROLE_PROVISION role to the user through the WebUI or by manually editing the users.xml file in the /opt/opennms/etc directory for the user drv4doe.

08 dashboard user roles
Figure 8. Adding dashboard role to the user drv4doe using the Meridian WebUI
<user>
    <user-id>drv4doe</user-id>
    <full-name>dashboard User</full-name>
    <password salt="true">6FOip6hgZsUwDhdzdPUVV5UhkSxdbZTlq8M5LXWG5586eDPa7BFizirjXEfV/srK</password>
    <role>ROLE_DASHBOARD</role>
</user>

Step 3: Define Surveillance View

Edit the ${OPENNMS_HOME}/etc/surveilliance-view.xml file to add a definition for the user drv4doe, which you created in step 1.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<surveillance-view-configuration
  xmlns:this="http://www.opennms.org/xsd/config/surveillance-views"
  xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance"
  xsi:schemaLocation="http://www.opennms.org/xsd/config/surveillance-views http://www.opennms.org/xsd/config/surveillance-views.xsd"
  default-view="default" >
  <views >
    <view name="drv4doe" refresh-seconds="300" >
      <rows>
        <row-def label="Servers" >
          <category name="Servers"/>
        </row-def>
      </rows>
      <columns>
        <column-def label="PROD" >
          <category name="Production" />
        </column-def>
        <column-def label="TEST" >
          <category name="Test" />
        </column-def>
      </columns>
    </view>
   <!-- default view here -->
    <view name="default" refresh-seconds="300" >
      <rows>
        <row-def label="Routers" >
          <category name="Routers"/>
        </row-def>
        <row-def label="Switches" >
          <category name="Switches" />
        </row-def>
        <row-def label="Servers" >
          <category name="Servers" />
        </row-def>
      </rows>
      <columns>
        <column-def label="PROD" >
          <category name="Production" />
        </column-def>
        <column-def label="TEST" >
          <category name="Test" />
        </column-def>
        <column-def label="DEV" >
          <category name="Development" />
        </column-def>
      </columns>
    </view>
  </views>
</surveillance-view-configuration>

This configuration and proper assignment of node categories will produce a default dashboard for all users, other than drv4doe.

You can hide the upper navigation on any page by specifying ?quiet=true; adding it to the end of the Meridian URL. This is very handy when using the dashboard on a large monitor or tv screen for office wide viewing.

However, when logging in as drv4doe, the user is taking directly to the dashboard page and is presented with a dashboard based on the custom Surveillance View definition.

The drv4doe user is not allowed to navigate to URLs other than the dashboard.jsp URL. Doing so will result in an Access Denied error.

Anonymous dashboards

You can modify the configuration files for the security framework to give you access to one or more dashboards without logging in. At the end you’ll be able to point a browser at a special URL like `http://…​/opennms/dashboard1` or `http://…​/opennms/dashboard2` and see a dashboard without any authentication. First, configure surveillance views and create dashboard users as above. For example, make two dashboards and two users called dashboard1 and dashboard2. Test that you can log in as each of the new users and see the correct dashboard. Now create some aliases you can use to distinguish between dashboards. In /opt/opennms/jetty-webapps/opennms/WEB-INF, edit web.xml. Just before the first <servlet-mapping> tag, add the following servlet entries:

  <servlet>
       <servlet-name>dashboard1</servlet-name>
       <jsp-file>/dashboard.jsp</jsp-file>
  </servlet>

  <servlet>
       <servlet-name>dashboard2</servlet-name>
       <jsp-file>/dashboard.jsp</jsp-file>
  </servlet>

Just before the first <error-page> tag, add the following servlet-mapping entries:

  <servlet-mapping>
       <servlet-name>dashboard1</servlet-name>
       <url-pattern>/dashboard1</url-pattern>
  </servlet-mapping>

  <servlet-mapping>
       <servlet-name>dashboard2</servlet-name>
       <url-pattern>/dashboard2</url-pattern>
  </servlet-mapping>

After the last <filter-mapping> tag, add the following filter-mapping entries:

  <filter-mapping>
    <filter-name>AddRefreshHeader-120</filter-name>
    <url-pattern>/dashboard.jsp</url-pattern>
  </filter-mapping>
  <filter-mapping>
    <filter-name>AddRefreshHeader-120</filter-name>
    <url-pattern>/dashboard1</url-pattern>
  </filter-mapping>
  <filter-mapping>
    <filter-name>AddRefreshHeader-120</filter-name>
    <url-pattern>/dashboard2</url-pattern>
  </filter-mapping>

Next edit applicationContext-acegi-security.xml to enable anonymous authentication for the /dashboard1 and /dashboard2 aliases. Near the top of the file, find <bean id="filterChainProxy" …​>. Below the entry for /rss.jsp*, add an entry for each of the dashboard aliases:

  <bean id="filterChainProxy" class="org.acegisecurity.util.FilterChainProxy">
    <property name="filterInvocationDefinitionSource">
      <value>
        CONVERT_URL_TO_LOWERCASE_BEFORE_COMPARISON
        PATTERN_TYPE_APACHE_ANT
        /rss.jsp*=httpSessionContextIntegrationFilter,logoutFilter,authenticationProcessingFilter,basicProcessingFilter,securityContextHolderAwareRequestFilter,anonymousProcessingFilter,basicExceptionTranslationFilter,filterInvocationInterceptor
        /dashboard1*=httpSessionContextIntegrationFilter,logoutFilter,securityContextHolderAwareRequestFilter,dash1AnonymousProcessingFilter,filterInvocationInterceptor
        /dashboard2*=httpSessionContextIntegrationFilter,logoutFilter,securityContextHolderAwareRequestFilter,dash2AnonymousProcessingFilter,filterInvocationInterceptor
        /**=httpSessionContextIntegrationFilter,logoutFilter,authenticationProcessingFilter,basicProcessingFilter,securityContextHolderAwareRequestFilter,anonymousProcessingFilter,exceptionTranslationFilter,filterInvocationInterceptor

...

About halfway through the file, look for <bean id="filterInvocationInterceptor" …​>. Below the entry for /dashboard.jsp, add an entry for each of the aliases:

  <bean id="filterInvocationInterceptor" class="org.acegisecurity.intercept.web.FilterSecurityInterceptor">

...

        /frontpage.htm=ROLE_USER,ROLE_DASHBOARD
        /dashboard.jsp=ROLE_USER,ROLE_DASHBOARD
        /dashboard1=ROLE_USER,ROLE_DASHBOARD
        /dashboard2=ROLE_USER,ROLE_DASHBOARD
        /gwt.js=ROLE_USER,ROLE_DASHBOARD

...

Finally, near the bottom of the page, add a new instance of AnonymousProcessingFilter for each alias.

  <!-- Set the anonymous username to dashboard1 so the dashboard page
       can match it to a surveillance view of the same name. -->
  <bean id="dash1AnonymousProcessingFilter" class="org.acegisecurity.providers.anonymous.AnonymousProcessingFilter">
    <property name="key"><value>foobar</value></property>
    <property name="userAttribute"><value>dashboard1,ROLE_DASHBOARD</value></property>
  </bean>

  <bean id="dash2AnonymousProcessingFilter" class="org.acegisecurity.providers.anonymous.AnonymousProcessingFilter">
    <property name="key"><value>foobar</value></property>
    <property name="userAttribute"><value>dashboard2,ROLE_DASHBOARD</value></property>
  </bean>

Restart Meridian and you should bring up a dashboard at `http://…​/opennms/dashboard1` without logging in.

There’s no way to switch dashboards without closing the browser (or deleting the JSESSIONID session cookie).
If you accidentally click a link that requires full user privileges (e.g. Node List), you’ll be given a login form. Once you get to the login form, there’s no going back to the dashboard without restarting the browser. If this problem bothers you, you can set ROLE_USER in addition to ROLE_DASHBOARD in your userAttribute property. However this will give full user access to anonymous browsers.