Observer Platform was released March 30, 2018.
How to upgrade Observer Platform
The process for upgrading each product is available by following the information at these links.
New Features
The new features listed here were added with this release.
Apex adds sites. Sites are any geographic location and the user-specified IP addresses assigned to that location. They appear on a map giving you at-a-glance information about how well your networks are performing. Is a problem isolated or widespread? With sites you can immediately tell. A site can be an entire office or data center or as specific as individual subnets within a location. If you have a large number of sites you monitor, you can export and import site definitions in bulk using a CSV file. A sample file is provided.
A new site widget allows you to add a map of your sites to your own dashboards. Site locations change colors to alert you to problems. The site map widget shows local as well as site-to-site and site-to-internet traffic. Like other dashboard widgets, you can drill down from a site into more specific details.
Figure 3: Site Performance
Because knowing how your sites are operating is as important to you as knowing how well your networks or applications are performing or your VoIP calls sound, there’s a new Site Performance button on the main Apex screen. Right from the home screen you can get right into the details of your sites.
Figure 4: Site Performance button
Apex has added a new User Experience Score. Without needing to dig into packets anyone can instantly tell how well their network infrastructure is performing. Included with the score is whether the network, client, server, or application is responsible for any marginal or poor user experience. Because the User Experience score is a number on a scale of 1-10, and a color code is given to each conversation, you immediately know whether this specific conversation is a poor (0-5), marginal (5-8), or good (8-10) user experience. This means that trouble tickets can be assigned more quickly to the proper team.
Connection Dynamics has been redesigned to use a simple, "chat"-style interface. It’s now clear who is talking to whom and who is doing the talking.
Figure 5: Connection Dynamics Redesigned
You can now select multiple threshold color bars in a table and refresh the dashboard to have the data focused on your selections.
A GigaStor Trace Extraction can now use pattern filters. A pattern may be ASCII, binary, or hexadecimal. Regular expressions are supported. Using a pattern allows you to be very specific about which packets you include in your trace extraction.
Apex has added breadcrumbs and a Back method to move easily back to previous dashboards you were viewing.
Observer can now decode these protocols: ANCP, SYNC-E, and Line-ID.
Hardware pattern filters are now available through the Observer interface. It is no longer necessary to configure the filters directly on the capture card. Choose Filters > Configure Hardware Filter to begin creating your filter.
Figure 6: Hardware pattern filter
IP Subnet Ranges Trending is deprecated as of this release. The IP Subnet Range Trending feature has been replaced by the Site Performance and site widget features in Apex.
Starting with this release it is no longer possible to specify a sampling divider for Network Trending settings. This is also now handled by Apex.
The GigaStor capture card now has details about the specific amount of light power for each fiber SFP, shown as dBm. It’s no longer necessary to have a separate light meter to test the SFPs, as the Device Manager details shows you exactly what each link has for its light power strength.
Figure 7: SFP Power
The GigaStor probes now officially support 10GBASE-T SFPs.
Figure 8: Copper 10G-BASE-T SFP
Fixed issues
The list below are 5 customer-reported and other notable issues fixed in this release.
OA-2978 ADM widget not discovering connections in this scenario
OA-5824 Cannot combine IP and ipServer filters without getting an error
OA-5979 Crash in NiDB.dll when multiple users are connected to Apex and are trying to run reports simultaneously
OA-6138 Dual TCB Bars in a single table are still not scaling properly
OA-6165 The TOD deduction should not include the delay from the first packet on change of direction