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Manage Notifiers and Notifier Groups

Notifiers must be configured in order to receive alerts, or notifications, when a device is in error or when the error clears. There is a wide variety of notification methods to meet your needs. Navigate to the Configure Notifiers screen by clicking on Notifiers in the Control Menu. This displays a table of currently configured notifiers with the following information:

  • Availability - box is checked when the notifier is configured to receive error alerts
  • Performance - box is checked when the notifier is configured to receive performance alerts
  • Notifier - E-mail address, phone number, pager number, etc., that correlates to the Notification Method
  • Description - A name, department, or other text describing the notifier
  • Notification Method - Type of notifier, e.g., E-mail in HTML format, Text Message, VoIP phone call, etc.
  • Notify After # Error(s)? - Number of errors to wait until sending alerts; used for escalation
  • Stop Notify After # Notification(s) - Limits the number of error alerts sent to the notifier
  • Notify When All Clear? - Select whether or not the notifier is informed when the error has cleared
  • Performance Alert Type - When Performance Alerts are enabled for this notifier, it displays the selected alert type, errors only or warnings and errors

The sections below describe how to Add or Modify your Notifier configurations.

Add Notifier

Click the Add Notifier button in the upper right to create a new notifier and supply information in each section as required.

Configure Notifier Type/Destination

  • Description - Enter a some text describing the notifier (optional)
  • Send a(n) - Click in the field to select the Notification Method from the dropdown
  • To - Provide the appropriate recipient information, e.g., if you selected an E-mail notification method, this must be an E-mail address,
    See Notification Methods - Details below for more information.

Configure Standard (Availability) Notifications

  • Enable availability notifications - Check this box to enable this notifier to receive alerts (can be enabled from the Configure Notifier screen Availability checkbox)
  • Notify me after N consecutive error(s) - Select from 1 to a maximum of 25 from the dropdown to send a notification only after an error has been detected the configured number of times. For example, if you set this to 2 and we detect only one error, this notifier will not be sent an alert. Only when an error is detected on the next consecutive check will the alert be sent.
  • Stop notifying me after N consecutive notification(s) - Select from 1 to a maximum of 25 from the dropdown to stop alerts after the configured number of consecutive alerts has been sent.*
  • Attach server response to E-mail alert - Check this box if you want us to send the server response as a file attached to the E-mail alert sent when an error is detected.
  • Notify me when the error has cleared - Check this box if you want an "all clear" notification once we've detected that an error has cleared.
  • Notify me when a security hole is detected - Check this box if you want to receive a notification when we detect a change in the security status of any of your enabled security devices. To receive notifications, this option must be checked and your security device must have Notify? set to Yes.
    Note: This option applies only to accounts with enabled security devices.
  • Enable Remote Commands - Check this box to enable remote commands on E-mail alerts or text messages. You must have a valid AlertSite Account Login or sufficient privileges, or the remote commands will be rejected. This feature allows you to reply to an E-mail or text message alert to enable or disable devices or notifiers. Subsequent replies to alerts sent to that notifier may contain one of the Remote Commands:
    • Disable the device: disdev or any of the characters 2, a, b, c
    • Enable the device: endev or any of the characters 3, d, e, f
    • Disable the notifier: disnot or any of the characters 4, g, h, i *
    • Enable the notifier: ennot or any of the characters 5, j, k, l *
    • Help: help or any of the characters 9,w,x,y,z
      • The disnot and ennot remote commands do not affect Performance Alerts for the notifier. For more information on performance alerts see Performance Alert Notification Options in the Performance Alerts help page.

* Note: the consecutive-notification counter continues to increment while errors are occurring even if Notify on Error is set to No in the Manage Site or Manage Transaction screen. If the maximum number of consecutive errors is reached before Notify on Error is set back to Yes, no further error notifications will be sent. For example:
1. A notifier is set to receive 10 consecutive alerts and "all-clear" notification.
2. After 3 alerts, Notify on Error is set to No.
3. Twelve more errors occur.
4. Notify on Error is set back to Yes.
5. No further error alerts are received since 15 consecutive errors occurred and the maximum for alerts was 10.
6. The error clears.
7. The notifier receives the "all-clear" notification.

Configure Performance Alerts

  • Enable performance alerts - Check this box to send Performance Alert notifications to this notifier.
  • Send performance alerts of type - Select warnings and errors or errors only from the dropdown to control which types of notifications are received by this notifier.
  • Repeat successive performance alerts - Check this box to continue receiving notifications while a device is in warning or error. Otherwise, send only one notification when the device exceeds set thresholds. No other notifications will be sent until the device's average response time returns below the set thresholds and a clear notification has been issued.
  • Click Submit after completing configuration to save the notifier.

Notification Methods - Details

Availability notifications are supported by all notifier methods. Content change notifications (devices configured with Notify on Content Change set to Yes) are limited to E-mail notifier methods (E-mail, E-mail to wireless device) and AOL Instant Message. Performance Alerts are limited to E-mail notification methods.

AlertSite currently supports the following types of notifiers (notification methods):

E-mail: Standard notification message is sent to any standard E-mail address. Please enter a valid e-mail address in the To field.

E-mail to wireless device (cell phone, pager, Blackberry, etc.): Compact notification message is sent to an E-mail gateway. Typical uses would include sending a message to a cell phone via an E-mail address provided with your cell phone by your cell phone company. Enter the recipient's mobile device E-mail address in the To field. In the US, UK and Canada, many of the cellular carriers support this method of receiving messages on your cellular phone. There are NO additional charges from AlertSite for using this method.

Here are some examples of different cellular providers:

AllTel AreaCodePhoneNumber@message.alltel.com
AT&T AreaCodePhoneNumber@txt.att.net
Verizon AreaCodePhoneNumber@vtext.com
Sprint AreaCodePhoneNumber@messaging.sprintpcs.com
Nextel AreaCodePhoneNumber@messaging.nextel.com
T-Mobile AreaCodePhoneNumber@tmomail.net
O2 YourEmailAddress@o2.co.uk
Orange YourEmailAddress@orange.net
US Cellular AreaCodePhoneNumber@email.uscc.net
Examples of paging carriers:
Skytel Accessnumber@skytel.com

AIM (AOL Instant Message): AIM, which stands for AOL Instant Message is a very fast but less reliable method of sending short messages to Instant Message clients, programs such as AOL Instant Messenger, pidgin, trillian, and many others.

AlertSite recommends configuring an additional notification method in conjunction with an AIM notifier. Message delivery via the AIM network is not guaranteed.

To configure an AIM notifier, first launch your AIM client and add the Screen Name AlertSite to your buddy list. Then, on the Add Notifier page enter your AIM Screen Name in the To field and click Submit. Once submitted, use the Test Notifier feature to verify your settings. AIM version 6 or greater is recommended for proper message formatting.

SMS: SMS, which stands for Short Message Service, is a very reliable method of sending short messages to wireless devices, such as cellphones or PDAs (check with your mobile provider to see if they support SMS).

To configure your SMS notifier, enter your phone number in the To field, formatted as follows:

Region Format Example
United States and Canada 1 area-code number 12125551212
International country-code number 493206922000

Note: There are additional charges for sending SMS messages.

AlphaNumeric (text) pager: Compact notification message is sent to an AlphaNumeric (text) pager using a special protocol. You must contact AlertSite Support to fully configure and utilize this contact method. We'll need the phone number of your paging company's Central Office facility. This is basically the phone number of a modem that we call and request that a page be dispatched to your pager. If your service is not listed here, then please contact your paging company and request that they provide that information. If it is listed then enter your pager ID in the To field and select the CO number from the Send Alpha pager messages to list. Finally, send us an an E-mail and we'll complete the setup.

Numeric pager (pause after dial method): Numeric message is sent to a numeric pager. We currently support two methods of message delivery. The "pause after dial method" will dial your pager number and wait 10 seconds before delivering the numeric message. Enter your pager's phone number in the To field as follows:

Region Format Example
United States and Canada 1 area-code number 12125551212
International 011 country-code number 011493206922000

Numeric pager (wait for quiet method): The "wait for quiet method" is a newer and somewhat more reliable method than the aforementioned "pause after dial method". It waits for a "quiet" period after dialing before sending the numeric message. Enter your pager's phone number in the To field as follows:

Region Format Example
United States and Canada 1 area-code number 12125551212
International 011 country-code number 011493206922000

AlertSite does not recommend the use of numeric pagers for automated notifications. They provide little or no error-detection or recovery capability and are best left for human-only use.

Telephone message (VoIP): The "Telephone message" method offers the ability to receive a telephone call that will announce the Alert condition if the phone is answered, otherwise a voice message is left. There are NO additional charges from AlertSite for using this method, but there may be additional charges from your telephone service provider.

To configure your VoIP notifier, enter your phone number in the To field, formatted as follows:

Region Format Example
United States and Canada 1 area-code number 12125551212
International 011 country-code number 011493206922000

Customers can identify all calls from 561-880-6695 and 954-312-0188 as AlertSite telephone (VoIP) notification.

POST request to web server: The data from a standard notification message can be sent to your web server via the HTTP POST method. This allows you to automatically receive alert notifications to your own computer and process the same data that we would email to your account. The data includes the following information provided in field=value pairs:

Field Name Description Sample Value
custid AlertSite customer id C12345
company AlertSite customer name Boca Internet Technologies
device_id AlertSite device id 2468
device_name Your name for the device Home Page
device_type Device type Web Site
device_typecode Device type code w
errcount Number of consecutive errors 3
http_status HTTP Status HTTP/1.1 200 OK
location AlertSite Monitoring Location Name Boca Raton, Florida
location_num AlertSite Monitoring Location Number
See Monitoring Locations
10
source Source of POST, always AlertSite AlertSite
status Standard AlertSite status code
see Status Codes
5
status_text Text version of status code Keyword(s) not found within page that was returned.
timestamp Date and time of alert 2006-08-18 13:33:06
transaction Transaction flag (1 = transaction, 0 = not) 0
Transaction Devices
step_name Your name of the Transaction Step Customer Login
step_num The number of the Transaction Step 3
ServerAgent Devices
(Tab delimited values, if more than one)
key_names Name of the server measurement DISK_INFO->DRIVE_C_USAGE
key_thresholds Your specified threshold limit 95
key_values Actual value 98

SNMP trap: The SNMP trap method offers the ability to send an SNMP trap to a specific IP address with a trap listener. A MIB has been defined in ASN1 notation and is available here.

Note: SNMP traps use UDP packets which can sometimes be unreliable across public networks. Our engineers are researching possible enhancements. One alternative solution is to POST the notification to your own web server and then send the trap through your local network, which is more reliable.

For further information and an example CGI that takes POST data and converts it into a local SNMP trap, please go to the on-line help page SNMP Alert Notifier.

Manage Notifier

After a notifier has been configured, it will appear in the table in the Configure Notifiers screen. To update a notifier, click on the entry in the Notifier column to display the Manage Notifiers screen. This screen is identical to the Add Notifier screen with the addition of:

  • Blackouts button - Click this button in the upper right to configure persistent or one-time blackouts for this notifier
  • Delete button - Click this button in the upper right to delete this notifier entirely. This action cannot be undone.
  • Test Notifier section - This section appears below the Configure Performance Alerts section. Select a location from which to send a test notification, then click the button labeled Send a test notification from.

Notifier Groups

Notifier Groups are used to route notifications for a group of monitored devices to a specific subset of notifiers. Notifications (error or clear) for the set of devices included in a Notifier Group will only be sent to the notifiers included in that notifier group.

Note: Notifier Groups are device-oriented, Once a device is included in a Notifier Group, only notifiers included in that Notifier Group will receive alerts when that device is in error. For any device that is not included in a Notifier Group, all notifiers will receive alerts.

Devices that are part of a notifier group will have a "folder" icon next to their names in the following screens:

  • Configuration: Sites
  • Configuration: Transactions
  • Configure Notifiers

Add a Notifier Group

To create a new Notifier Group:

  • Navigate to the Configure Notifier Groups by selecting Notifier Groups from the Notifiers dropdown in the Control Menu of the Console
  • Click the Add a New Group button to get to the Manage Notifier Group screen
  • Enter a name in the Notifier Group Name field
  • Select the Sites and/or ContentViews (which appear in teal font):
    • Click on the items in the Available Sites field that you want included in this group - Use <CTRL>-click to select multiple lines
    • Click the << button to move your selections to the Included Sites box
  • Select the notifiers you want to receive alerts when any of the included sites are in error or when they clear (as configured in each individual notifier):
    • Click on the items in the Available Notifiers field that you want included in this group - Use <CTRL>-click to select multiple lines
    • Click the << button to move your selections to the Included Notifiers box
  • Click Submit in the upper right

Edit a Notifier Group

To modify an existing Notifier Group:

  • Click on the group name, which follows GROUP: in the gray banner above the Site Name box - you will be on the Manage Notifier Group screen
  • Make your changes:
    • Modify the name in the Configure Notifier Group Name
    • Add more Sites or Notifiers by selecting them from the Available list and clicking << to move them to the Included list
    • Remove Sites or Notifiers by selecting them from the Included list and clicking >> to move them to the Available list
  • Click Submit

To change another group, choose one from the Select Notifier Group dropdown list.

To delete a group, select the group from the Configure Notifier Groups screen. In the Manage Notifier Group screen, click the Delete button in the upper right.

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