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This topic gives you an overview of how to get started quickly with the AppDynamics App iQ Platform, from getting a Controller to start deploying agents.
Get a Controller
The first step in using the AppDynamics App iQ Platform is to get a Controller. The Controller sits at the center of an AppDynamics deployment. It's where AppDynamics agents send data on the activity in the monitored environment. It's also where users go to view, understand, and analyze that data.
You can get a Controller by starting a free trial at www.appdynamics.com.
After creating your account and starting your trial, you can choose whether to install the Controller yourself or use a Controller hosted by AppDynamics.
- If you choose a SaaS Controller, the Controller is hosted for you and you do not need to install the Controller.
- If you choose an on-premises Controller instance, follow the instructions in the AppDynamics portal to download the Controller.
You can download the Controller, like most installable components of the AppDynamics App iQ platform, from the AppDynamics download center at https://download.appdynamics.com/.
If you are just investigating or learning about AppDynamics, you'll probably want to start with a SaaS Controller. It's the quickest way to get started. If you're ready for a closer look at AppDynamics, however, and interested in an on-premises deployment in the long term, see AppDynamics Platform for details on such deployments.
Log in to the Controller UI
Once you have installed the Controller or arranged for a hosted Controller, you can log in to the Controller UI.
- For a SaaS Controller, you will receive an email from the AppDynamics Operations team containing the URL and access details for your hosted Controller instance.
- For an on-premises Controller, you log in using the administrator credentials you created during the installation.
Install AppDynamics Agents
Once you have a Controller, the next thing you'll do is install AppDynamics agents in your environment.
The AppDynamics product module types use different types of agents. For example, for application monitoring, you need one of the AppDynamics App Agents.
For most types of agents, you can use the Agent Download Wizard in the Controller UI to get started quickly. The first time you log in to the Controller UI, the Agent Download Wizard appears.
Follow the instructions in the wizard to download and install agents in your application environment. You can access the wizard from the home page in the UI.
For more information on installing an app agent, use the following links:
Connect the Agent to the Controller
If you are using the agent download wizard, the wizard automatically configures the settings for connecting the agent to the Controller. If you download agents directly, you need to configure the Controller connections.
The following graphic shows the connections the agents use to reach the platform. Naturally, they vary depending on whether you are using the on-premises or SaaS AppDynamics platform.
It's possible that you will need to adjust the configuration of network components, such as firewalls or proxies, to permit traffic from the agent to the Controller. The connection is single directional, meaning that agents always initiate the connections to the Controller.
Enable Notifications (Configure an Email Server)
To send notifications, such as health rule violation notifications, the Controller needs to be configured to use a valid email (SMTP) server.
For a SaaS Controller, you can use the SaaS-provided SMTP Server or your own SMTP Server. For an on-premises Controller, you need to configure an SMTP server after installation.
See Enable an Email Server for information on configuring an email server.
After you've installed agents and restarted your applications, AppDynamics automatically builds an environment of your application. You can see the model in the dashboards and flow maps view of the Controller UI.
As it monitors your application workload, AppDynamics determines what's normal for your environment and applies sensible defaults for detecting abnormal activity and application errors. You can likely start using and benefiting from AppDynamics immediately, without touching the instrumentation configuration. However, when you're ready, you can optimize the configuration to make best use of AppDynamics for your environment and requirements.
The following timeline describe what a typical getting started journey may look like.
First Day with AppDynamics
- Get a Controller
- Download and install AppDynamics agent.
- Add users to the Controller UI.
- Configure Email/SMS settings to enable notifications. For SaaS, an SMTP server is preconfigured. For an on-premises Controller and SMS configuration, see Enable an Email Server.
- Get to know the AppDynamics defaults, such as built in health rules and baseline calculations.
- Learn about the key performance indicator metrics.
- Explore the ways that the different AppDynamics products work together.
First Week with AppDynamics APM
- Create and organize your business applications.
- View and customize flow maps.
- Create custom dashboards.
- Verify or adjust your tier groups, nodes and remote services.
- Customize your health rules.
First Month with AppDynamics APM
- Tune your service entry points.
- Manage user roles and groups, or connect the Controller to an external authentication provider.
- Capture contextual information, information points and data collectors.
- Extend your health rules with custom actions.
- Create custom metrics or add integration modules to AppDynamics.