Configuring Chart Data Viewers
The Chart viewers that are provided with Message Analyzer by default represent only one way to organize the display of data using the four data visualizer components that are available for Charts. When configuring Charts, you are currently limited to using these four types of graphic visualizer components and the data fields that are available from the Message Analyzer parsing process; however, there are almost no restrictions on how you organize, represent, and configure them as a Chart.
This section begins with a list of the built-in Chart data viewers that are included with every Message Analyzer installation. You can edit any one of these Charts and save it as a new custom Chart of your own. This section also describes the graphic visualizer components that comprise Chart configurations — you will typically utilize these components when creating your own Charts. In addition, a brief overview of Chart configuration features is included.
Message Analyzer has several Chart style data viewers that are provided by default with every Message Analyzer installation. These Chart viewers are contained in specific subcategories under the top-level Message Analyzer category in the following locations:
The New Viewer drop-down list on the global Message Analyzer toolbar and in the Session Explorer context menu.
The Start With drop-down list in the New Session dialog.
Locating the Subcategories of Built-In Charts
The subcategories in which the Chart viewers appear are as follows:
File Sharing category Chart viewers:
SMB File Stats
SMB Reads and Writes
SMB/SMB2 Service Response Time
HTTP category Chart viewers:
HTTP Content Type Volumes and Payloads
HTTP Operations Average Times
Dashboards category Chart viewers:
Top IP/Ethernet Conversations
Top TCP/UDP Conversations
Network category Chart viewers:
TCP Diagnosis with Stevens
Several preview Chart data viewers are available in the Common subcategory of the top-level My Items category in the New Viewer drop-down list, for example, the Interaction (Preview) and Gantt (Preview) charts. You will need to enable preview Chart viewers on the Features tab of the global Options dialog (accessible from the Message Analyzer Tools menu) and then restart Message Analyzer, for them to appear in the Common subcategory.
Several non-preview Chart style data viewers are also included in the Common subcategory of the top-level My Items category, as follows:
Process ID Distribution
Process Name and Id Correlation
To learn more about other data viewers that exist in the Common subcategory of the My Items category of the New Viewer drop-down list, see the Data Viewers topic.
The previously described Charts utilize up to four different types of data visualizer components in graphic formats that you can configure for unique data organizations and presentations, which can include rendering top-level data summaries, event timelines, and tabular/grid data, as described in Data Viewers. You can see all of these components in the Protocol Dashboard viewer and others.
Chart visualizer component elements can interact with the Analysis Grid viewer by displaying a related group of messages in the Analysis Grid viewer in response to double-clicking the indicated elements in the following visualizer components:
Bar Chart — contains bar elements that each represent a group of captured messages that have a common field, property, message type, or other entity to which an optional data manipulation formula is applied. Double-click a single bar to view the associated messages in a separate Analysis Grid viewer session tab.
Pie Chart — divided into slices or section elements that each represent a group of captured messages that have a common field, property, message type, or other entity to which an optional data manipulation formula is applied. Double-click a single slice to view the associated messages in a separate Analysis Grid viewer session tab.
Timeline — displays an interconnected timeline element across trace boundaries for common properties, fields, values, or other entities that are contained in captured messages, to expose the points in time on the x-axis where those entities were sent and/or received, versus other values on the y-axis that might represent the application of a particular formula, such as the Count of identical values for a particular field. Double-click a single timeline element or node to view the associated messages in a separate Analysis Grid viewer session tab.
The Timeline visualizer is enabled for zooming into chosen windows of time.
Grid View — contains data row and column elements that you can organize to correlate values with entities such as message fields and properties, or formulas based on field and properties, for example the Average of a set of field values. Double-click a data row to view the associated messages in a separate Analysis Grid viewer session tab.
Message Analyzer enables you to create your own custom Chart viewers containing one or more of the four types of data visualizer components. The protocol/module types, fields, properties, and the statistics formulas that you can apply to these entities can provide a quick overview of trace activity at-a-glance, to enhance your data analysis perspectives. You can use formulas to manipulate the values of fields, properties, and other entities in the messages that you capture to create unique data representations. An example of this is the Bar Chart visualizer component in the Protocol Dashboard viewer, which can quickly reveal the top-level protocols that are among the highest concentration in a set of trace results, which might shed light on some deeper issues such as parsing problems or diagnostic errors and warnings.
Working with the Chart Controls
If you want to edit an existing Chart and save your changes under a different Chart name, you must first display the Chart you want to edit by selecting it from the New Viewer drop-down list. After the Chart displays, click the Edit Chart command in the Charts drop-down list in the global Session menu. This action displays the Chart data entry tabs and enables the existing Chart for editing.
To begin configuration of a new Chart, you must select the New Chart command in the New Viewer drop-down list that is located on the global Message Analyzer toolbar or in the global Session menu. This displays the Chart layout surface and data entry tabs that enable you to create a new Chart. Thereafter, you can also make use of the following high-level commands that appear in the Charts drop-down list on the Session menu:
Edit Chart — after you save changes to any Chart configuration, this command enables the Chart for editing.
Save Chart — enables you to save a Chart that you configured.
Add Component — displays a data entry dialog that enables you to add a new visualizer component to a Chart.
Remove Component — enables you to remove a selected visualizer component in a Chart.
New Data Mapping — displays a data entry dialog that enables you to specify column fields, row fields, and formulas that perform various operations on field values for unique data displays.
Using the Chart Configuration Features
After you display the layout surface for creating a new Chart or editing an existing one, you will make use of the data entry tabs for Chart configuration to create or edit a Chart. These tabbed controls consist of the Chart Layout, Component Layout, and Data tabs, as described in the Chart Controls and Features topic. Note that you can also employ Unions in any Chart that you develop or modify, which includes Union sets, also described in Chart Controls and Features.
The New Viewer drop-down list also contains aManage Chart command that displays a dialog for managing Charts, which includes exporting, importing, organizing, and deleting Chart items.
The following topics in this section describe how to use the Chart configuration features so that you can create, edit, and save your own custom Chart viewers:
To learn more about managing Message Analyzer Charts, see Managing Chart Viewers.