SQL Sessions Test

This test monitors the availability of the Microsoft SQL server from an internal perspective. This test returns measurements like Login/Sec, Logout/Sec, and number of user connections.

Target of the test : A Microsoft SQL server

Agent deploying the test : An internal agent

Outputs of the test : One set of results for every Microsoft SQL server monitored

Configurable parameters for the test
  1. TEST PERIOD - How often should the test be executed
  2. Host – The IP address of the Microsoft SQL server.
  3. Port - The port number through which the Microsoft SQL server communicates. The default port is 1433.
  4. ssl – If the Microsoft SQL server being monitored is an SSL-enabled server, then set the ssl flag to Yes. If not, then set the ssl flag to No.
  5. USER – If a Microsoft SQL Server 7.0/2000 is monitored, then provide the name of a SQL user with the Sysadmin role in this text box. While monitoring a Microsoft SQL Server 2005 or above, provide the name of a SQL user with all of the privileges outlined in User Privileges Required for Monitoring Microsoft SQL server.

  6. password - The password of the specified user.
  7. confirm password - Confirm the password by retyping it.
  8. instance – The name of a specific Microsoft SQL instance to be monitored. The default value of this parameter is “default”. To monitor an Microsoft SQL instance named “CFS”, enter this as the value of the “instance” parameter.
  9. domain - By default, none is displayed in the DOMAIN text box. If the ‘SQL server and Windows’ authentication has been enabled for the server being monitored, then the DOMAIN can continue to be none. On the other hand, if ‘Windows only’ authentication has been enabled, then, in the DOMAIN text box, specify the Windows domain in which the managed Microsoft SQL server exists. Also, in such a case, the USER name and PASSWORD that you provide should be that of a user authorized to access the monitored SQL server.
  10. isntlmv2 - In some Windows networks, NTLM (NT LAN Manager) may be enabled. NTLM is a suite of Microsoft security protocols that provides authentication, integrity, and confidentiality to users. NTLM version 2 (“NTLMv2”) was concocted to address the security issues present in NTLM. By default, the isntlmv2 flag is set to No, indicating that NTLMv2 is not enabled by default on the target Microsoft SQL host. Set this flag to Yes if NTLMv2 is enabled on the target host.
  11. useperfmon – By default, this flag is set to Yes, indicating that this test uses the Windows Perfmon utility by default to pull out the metrics of interest. To instruct the test to use queries for metrics collection and not Perfmon, set this flag to No. Typically, when monitoring a Microsoft SQL server in an agent-based manner, its best to go with the default setting – i.e., use Perfmon for metrics collection. However, when monitoring the Microsoft SQL server in an agentless manner, its ideal to use queries instead of Perfmon to collect the required metrics. In such cases, set this flag to No
  12. ISPASSIVE – If the value chosen is yes, then the Microsoft SQL server under consideration is a passive server in a SQL cluster. No alerts will be generated if the server is not running. Measures will be reported as “Not applicable" by the agent if the server is not up.
Measurements made by the test
Measurement Description Measurement Unit Interpretation

Logins:

This value indicates the total number of logins per second.

Logins/Second

A high value here indicates an increase in the rate of user logins into the SQL server. An unusual increase in the login rate may be an indicator of abnormal activity of database applications.

Logouts:

Indicates the total number of logouts per second. 

Logouts/Second

A high value here indicates increase in rate of users logging out of SQL server.  An unusually large number of logins and logouts can occur due to application retries being caused by errors during database access.

Current connections:

Indicates the number user connections to the server at an instant.

Number

As each user connection consumes some memory, a large number of user connections could affect throughput. By tracking the history of user connections, a database administrator can set the maximum expected number of concurrent users accordingly.

Logical connections:

Indicates the number of logical connections to the server.

Number

The main purpose of logical connections is to service multiple active result sets (MARS) requests. For MARS requests, every time that an application makes a connection to SQL Server, there may be more than one logical connection that corresponds to a physical connection.

When MARS is not used, the ratio between physical and logical connections is 1:1. Therefore, every time that an application makes a connection to SQL Server, logical connections will increase by 1