Azure Services: Azure Insights

Application Insights from Azure is a service that can be of significant help to anyone that needs reliable applications in order to run their business. Here’s some information about Application Insights, including exactly how it can help a business.

Azure Insights Overview

Azure Insights is useful in that it allows you to check for both issues with your app’s performance and any exceptions that you receive. This kind of debugging is obviously going to be critically important to the long-term success of your application. The service also helps with various other tasks related to this, including monitoring websites and dealing with integrations.

Free Trials for Application Insights

It’s actually possible to take Application Insights for a spin to see if it will work out for you through the “start free” option at the appropriate Microsoft Azure page. That way, you can get a better sense of whether this will provide the insights that actually work for your needs or not. It’s often a significant problem when you go right into a service, thinking that it will work out for you based on simply what you’ve read and nothing else, and then it turns out that there’s some issue that you hadn’t realized previously with the service’s compatibility, functioning, or anything else.

Quick Setup and Problem-solving

One of the things that many people appreciate about Azure Application Insights is that you can get right into it quickly. It’s part of the package at Visual Studio as well, and it allows you to check a number of different data points for an application right away, without having to spend countless hours setting it up. The data analysis you can look at right away include the usual logs, but also data related to exceptions that came up in the application, for example.

This is significant since looking at exceptions will tell you a lot about potential problems that the app you’re testing might have. These could directly solve some fatal issue with the app, or they could be exceptions that don’t matter that much. In either scenario, it’s obviously going to be important to check what the cause of the exception might be since you never know which one it is.

It’s always useful to make sure that you know where the exception is coming from since you never know when the fact that an exception occurred at all can come back to haunt you in the long run. At that point, you can decide to not worry about it if you want, if you’re that sure that it won’t become a problem. However, it will often be worth your time to find a solution real quick even if it’s a minor error since this will help you sleep better at night as a developer.

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However, if you instead focus on trying out trials before committing to anything else when it comes to Application Insights, you could potentially avoid this situation.

Discovering Other Issues

Other issues you will be able to figure out using Azure Insights includes those related to the app’s lifecycle. It’s generally useful to make sure that you figure out what sorts of issues are happening before they become catastrophic, and generally before they put a monkey wrench in your plans for the app, generally.

For example, one often advertised option you have here is looking at how your virtual machines perform in relation to the performance of the application. While there are other services that allow you to do this, the advantage in this particular case is that it allows you to do this tracking efficiently and without a lot of extra hassle. Everything is laid out for you so that you don’t have to go very far or reach for it to get the data that you need.

Help for Developers

An approach to the service that is useful is how you can integrate monitoring right into DevOps. You can use something like Visual Studio and then search events right from there using Insights. It’s even possible to head straight to what line of code is causing the event. This will likely save hours and hours of searching and tinkering, as any coder who’s spent enough time on such projects can tell you.

There’s also the option to create alerts based on whatever criteria you most need help with in general. The service outlines how you can check annotations for different parts in order to check whether deploying your app the way it is currently is going to cause this or that issue. It helps to be able to check to see how huge changes you’ve made in your app might affect other parts of your operation as well.

Once you find a bug, there are tools there to let you go from the monitoring phase to an active editing phase if this is something that you wish to do. By combining these parts together, the service makes the job of the developer considerably easier since otherwise, it would often be necessary to go back and forth between different tools that do either one thing or the other.

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New innovations from Azure and elsewhere mean that this hiccup in developing is no longer necessary, thankfully. You can now just go back and forth from one to the other on an as-needed basis.

This service also makes heavy use of that trend that seems to be on everyone’s minds these days, machine learning. By making use of machine learning, Azure Insights makes it so that you can get a full understanding of how often the app you’re developing fails, and exactly how it fails. Anything that’s out of the ordinary will be noticed and tabulated for your review.

In particular, it’s possible to check and see how it all works with other Azure Cloud Services. You can fully customize and control how you’re alerted and what exactly sets off alerts.

Usefulness of Live Developing

The main reason why this is important and why it’s useful is because developing isn’t exactly a static thing in the modern era. You can’t just develop an app a single time in the beginning, and then just pat yourself on the back and walk away from it. The modern world has modern app-users, and they are often a demanding lot. They expect you to stick around with the app and to keep developing it to improve it, to adapt it, and to fix any bugs that come up at every step of the process. Otherwise, you run the risk of having people largely abandon your app, no matter how popular it was initially. Fortunately, you can avoid this using services such as Azure Insights to make sure you keep apprised of any complaints or trends that are likely to pop up as a result of a new deployment for your app.

This is a critical part of app development, after all, and it can’t be ignored lightly. In many situations, it’s going to determine the difference between the somewhat popular apps that are only popular in the short term, and those that are highly popular over a longer period of time.

For more information about Azure Insights, as well as other Azure services, please make sure you go ahead and contact us today.

About Jeff Collins

Experience and Expertise make the difference when searching for top cloud providers. Appliedi has provided managed cloud services since 1999.