December 25, 2008

DotNetNuke 4.9.1 Dashboard Module

As I mentioned in an earlier blog posting one of the big new items in DotNetNukr 4.9.1 is a Dashboad module.  This module was created to help the DotNetNuke Corporation work with the DotNetNuke Professional Edition users, however, there are also big benefits to the rest of us that help support users on DotNetNuke.  The following sections will discuss each of the views included in the Dashboard module, which can be accessed from "Host" -> "Dashboard". 

Web Server Information.

Web Server Dashboard Information

This information provides support individuals with key information about the web server and hosting environment used to serve the DNN site.  Information about the operating system, IIS and .NET Framework versions, as well as ASP.NET identity and path information is all included.  Now, those that are very familiar with DotNetNuke will notice that all information on this screen with the exception of the OS and Web Server information has been available in the Host Settings sections for quite some time.  However, this centrailzed access merits some duplication.

Database Server Information.

Database Server Dashboard Information

The next view is an entirely new set of information showing database server informaiton, all of this from a support perspective is key information to know.  Some highlights in my opinion are the database version and edition information, and backup history, which, if backups have been completed will show history information.  From a support perspective this will allow individuals to see that backups have been taken, and from a site administrator standpoint it will provide piece of mind that the backups do actually exist!

Host Settings Information.

Host Settings Dashboard Information

The next view provides exposure into the dotnetnuke host configuration.  Thiese items are great from a quick view standpoint as you can see if any non-standard providers are being used for data, caching, logging, htmlediting, and friendly URL's.  You can even see the scheduled and CAS permission information.  The Host GUID is also there, which from a licensing perspective can be handy.  This really makes it a lot easier to get host configuration information from users, rather than having them dig through the web.config or send you a copy to dig through.

Portals Information.

Portals Dashboard Information

Next we have information about the individual portals that exist in an installation, with key metrics that can help identify problem areas right away.  These metrics such as page, role, and user counts again, provide quick access to information that could be obtained via previous systems.  Additionally the portal GUID listing is another key licensing helper!

Installed Modules Information.

Modules Dashboard Information

The next to last view shows important information about installed modules to the user. The module name, version, and used instances count are displayed. Allowing administrators to quickly identify un-used modules via the interface to help reduce site clutter.

Skin Information.

Skins Dashboard Information

The final view shows information on the number of host skins installed, and an indicator of if they are used. Again, very helpful from a potential site cleanup perspective.

My Thoughts

Overall, I think this dashboard is going to be a huge value add item to the framework, however, i see a number of key metrics that I feel need to still be listed in here.  Items such as containers and their usage, the size of the event and site logs, scheduler items running, and items of similar nature that can dramatically impact the performance of a portal.

I am going to investigate any methods of potentially extending this dashboard to provide additional information.  As I find more information, i will be sure to blog about it here.

tags: DNN, DNN Administration
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