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Oracle Management Cloud Blog covers the latest releases, customer stories, how-to guides and more.

  • January 25, 2019

Blog Series: Building Interactive Dashboards in Oracle Management Cloud - Part 1

Guest Author: Pratul Mathur, Senior Product Manager, Oracle Management Cloud


In this 3 part blog series, I will show you how to build and connect several interactive dashboards together in Oracle Management Cloud, which will enable you to drill-down to view and manage the health of your applications and infrastructure. I’ll show you how to set up and link your own custom dashboards with easy to follow steps. The blog topics in this series will cover:

Part 1: Drill-Down from Dashboard Widgets using Entity Links
Part 2: Using Out-of-the-Box Data Explorer Widgets with Drill-Down Capabilities
Part 3: Drill-Down from Dashboard Widgets using Widget Title Linking

Part 1 – Drill-Down from Dashboard Widgets Using Entity Links

Oracle Management Cloud allows users to build highly interactive custom dashboards with ability to in-context drill-down and/or link it to another dashboard or Oracle Management Cloud page, such as, the Application Performance Monitoring page, or the Database Performance Analytics page.  
To diagnose performance and infrastructure issues faster, Oracle Management Cloud offers several different types of drill-down capabilities including:

  • Widgets that enable you to drill-down and view the underlying log data with a single click,

  • Metric widgets that allow you to perform ad-hoc diagnostics,

  • Entity Link APIs to quickly point to a destination dashboard for a given Entity,

  • Out-of-the-box Status and Alert widgets for a quick view in to the Entity Summary and Alerts pages,

  • Widget Title Link to let users to go from custom dashboards to specific Oracle Management Cloud pages and dashboards.

In this article, I will introduce you to Entity Links and show how to easily customize and link dashboards together using the Entity Links API.

Introduction to Entity Links

If you have built a dashboard for your Entity Type, such as, an application or an Oracle Database, you’re more than likely interested in monitoring its health and performance at a glance. With Oracle Management Cloud, we provide you with a convenient way to navigate to specific Entity Type dashboard using Entity Links.

In Oracle Management Cloud, you can create a link for all entities that belong to a specific Entity Type, shown in a Data Explorer widget, to another dashboard by using the Entity Link capability. The same link also appears in the entity card “View In” option with the name of the dashboard.

When you click on the Entity Link, you navigate to the linked dashboard within the context of the specific entity, which you have selected or clicked, in the global entity selector.
(Note: In Oracle Management Cloud Release 19.1.1, you can only link to the entities shown in a table or data grid visualizations.)

Some of the Entity Type such as, Oracle E-Business Suite group, Oracle Exadata, or an APM application, are linked to a relevant out-of-the-box dashboard or Oracle Management Cloud pages by default. You can customize or change these links to point to other dashboards if needed.

Entity Links in a Table

Entity Link in the Entity Card

Steps for Creating and Customizing Entity Links

You can create an Entity Link for an Entity Type or customize Entity Links for an Entity Type using Oracle Management Cloud’s service API. By using APIs, you can also fetch the details of all Entity Links or delete an Entity Link that you have created. Once you create the link, all the entities that belong to that Entity Type will show up as links in the table and data grid visualizations. If you click on them, it will take you to the corresponding linked dashboard. As I mentioned earlier, the same link will also appear in the entity card “View In” option with the name of the dashboard.  
Please note, that if an out-of-the-box default Entity Link is set for an Entity Type, such as an Oracle E-Business Suite application, Oracle Exadata, or an APM application, and you create an Entity Link for the same Entity Type, then your created link will override the default link. Let’s look at how to create these links in more detail.

Consider the use-case where you have a dashboard for an application fleet, which lists all your application’s critical metrics. If you want to drill-down to see a more detailed view for a specific application within your fleet, follow the steps I’ve outlined below.

Step 1: Obtain the ID of Your Destination Application Dashboard

In this initial set up step, navigate to your desired application dashboard within Oracle Management Cloud. You’ll need to open the destination dashboard first to obtain the “dashboardID” parameter from the browser URL. The “dashboardID” is the unique identifier for that specific dashboard. See screenshot below.

Step 2: Invoking the Entity Link Service API

In the second step, you will need to use Oracle Management Cloud’s service API to link the APM application Entity Type to your destination Application Dashboard. Use this URL to invoke Oracle Management Cloud’s service API: https://<Oracle-Management-Cloud_INSTANCE_URL>/serviceapi/preferences/entitylinks

If, for example, your Oracle Management Cloud homepage URL is:
https://myOracle-Management-Cloud-url.oraclecloud.com/emsaasui/emcpdfui/welcome.html

then the service API URL will be:
https://myOracle-Management-Cloud-url.oraclecloud.com/serviceapi/preferences/entitylinks

Use POST method on the URL mentioned above to create a new Entity Link or to edit existing Entity Link.

You can use any REST client like Postman to invoke the service API. Here are a few sample screenshots to illustrate the setup within the Postman REST client.

Use Basic Auth with username as ‘<Tenant Name>.<Username>’ and the password.

Below is the payload of the API, which is a JSON with the Entity Type and the destination application dashboard ID that you want to link. Note, the payload is a JSON array, which means, you can create multiple Entity Links using just one call with one JSON object per Entity Link.

Use the following header and invoke the service API.

You should see a 204 response code for successful API invocation.

Step 3: Verify You Successfully Created the Link

In this last step, you can verify whether you created the Entity Link correctly by using Oracle Management Cloud’s UI and/or service API.

In our example, go to the application fleet dashboard and verify the linking of the individual application is right.

Alternatively, you can invoke the following service API to fetch all the Entity Links:
GET https://myOracle-Management-Cloud-url.oraclecloud.com/serviceapi/preferences/entitylinks

The same authorization and headers are needed to access the API.

In the response, you should see an entry for the APM application Entity Type with the URL of the linked dashboard.

Deleting an Entity Link

You can delete the Entity Link that you created earlier by using the following steps to invoke the delete service API.

DELETE method with the URL:
https://myOracle-Management-Cloud-url.oraclecloud.com/serviceapi/preferences/entitylinks/<entity_type>

The same authorization and headers are needed, and you should see a 204 response code for successful API invocation.

Note, that you can delete only the user created and /or customized Entity Links. You cannot delete the out-of-the-box or default ones.

If a default link is present for an Entity Type and you delete the user created/customized link for that entity type, then it will default back to the out-of-the-box or default link.

Conclusion

Oracle Management Cloud allows users to build interactive dashboards for monitoring the health of your applications and IT estate. In this article, I illustrated how to leverage Oracle Management Cloud’s Entity Link API to drill-down and link to your destination dashboards. You saw in the example, how this is a handy way for you to quickly navigate to any application that might be having issues. In the Part 2 of the blog series, I will discuss how to use Oracle Management Cloud’s out-of-the-box widgets to drill-down and see critical Alerts and Entity Summary pages from your own custom dashboard.

Guest Author: Pratul Mathur, Senior Product Manager, Oracle Management Cloud

Up Next:

Read the 3 Part Blog Series: Building Interactive Dashboards in Oracle Management Cloud
Part 1: Drill-Down from Dashboard Widgets using Entity Links
Part 2: Using Out-of-the-Box Data Explorer Widgets with Drill-Down Capabilities
Part 3: Drill-Down from Dashboard Widgets using Widget Title Linking