In AppDynamics, a tier represents a service in your application environment, such as an ASP.NET front end, WCF service, .NET web service, or standalone application. Tiers display on flow maps, so you should name your tiers that is logical and easy to understand for your users.

Use the AppDynamics .NET Agent Configuration Utility to map IIS sites to tiers (see Configure the .NET Agent). Some manual configuration options require you to edit the config.xml file (see Administer the .NET Agent).

Name IIS Tiers Automatically

Name IIS tiers automatically using the configuration utility. Select Automatic on the Assign IIS applications to the tiers pane. The .NET Agent instruments all IIS sites except the Default Web Site and names the tiers using this scheme:

IIS site/app

The agent omits app when the application is the root application for the IIS site.

Use this option when:

  • You are new to AppDynamics and the .NET Agent.
  • You want to instrument all IIS applications, and your team understands the form of IIS application names.

Automatic Tier Naming for the .NET Agent does not automatically assign a virtual application to a tier. To map virtual applications to tiers, see Name IIS Tiers Manually.

Name Azure Tiers Automatically

The .NET Agent automatically names Azure tiers using these schemes:

  • Cloud Services: Azure role name
  • App Services: Azure site name

To customize tier naming for Azure, see Name IIS Tiers Manually.

Name IIS Tiers Manually

The .NET Agent provides two options to name IIS tiers manually, using the configuration utility, or editing the config.xml file directly. 

Use the Configuration Utility

On the Assign IIS applications to tiers pane, select Manual. The configuration utility enables you to create new tiers and assign IIS applications to tiers.

Use this option when:

  • You do not want to instrument all IIS applications on the server
  • You want custom tier names
  • You want to assign multiple applications to a single tier

Edit the config.xml Directly

Use this option to customize Azure tier names, or when it is not possible to use the configuration utility. 

For each IIS tier to instrument, add an application element as a child element of the IIS applications element in the config.xml file. You can specify a static IIS tier name ,or a regular expression (which is helpful for variable Azure site names). For the full syntax and an example, see .NET Agent Configuration Properties.

For example, to add all Azure sites that begin with MvcWebRole to a tier named My Azure Tier using a regular expression:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<appdynamics-agent xmlns:xsd="" xmlns:xsi="">
  <controller host="" port="8090" ssl="false">
    <application name="AzureEmailService" />
    <account name="customer1" password="APJC234bcd$123" />
  <machine-agent />
  <app-agents azure="true" azure-role-name="" azure-role-instance-id="">
              <!-- Configure IIS tier names with a regular expression. -->
             <application path="/" site="MvcWebRole.*" site-regex="true">
                  <tier name="My Azure Tier"/>
         <standalone-application executable="WaWorkerHost.exe">
             <tier name="" />

Name Windows Service or Standalone Application Tiers

See Configure the .NET Agent for Windows Services and Standalone Applications on how to name tiers for each instrumented Windows service or standalone application manually in the config.xml.