Configuring dashboards, panels, and queries

As a tenant administrator or an editor, you can configure dashboards, panels, and queries to gain insight into your data. You can also configure a time range for the data and explore a query to troubleshoot it.

For example, you can create a dashboard to understand CPU utilization on a device and view the number of open events on the device. In this dashboard, you can also specify a time range to understand the data in more detail.

Tip: Quick access from the home page

To quickly open the dashboard from the home page, mark it as a favorite by using the star icon. Additionally, after you open a dashboard, it is available under Recently viewed dashboards on the home page. 


To create a dashboard

As a tenant administrator or an editor, you can create dashboards.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • On the Home page, click and select New Dashboard.
    • From the navigation menu, click Dashboards. Then click New > New Dashboard.
  2. On the New dashboard page, click Add visualization.
    Alternatively, you can add an existing panel from the library panels. For more information, see  Library panels Open link .
  3. In the Query section, select a data source for your dashboard, and add a query for the data source.
    Use Query Inspector to inspect and verify your query. For more information about queries, click Queries Open link .
  4. In the Panel tab, expand Visualization to select a visualization type. 
    (Optional) For example, select the BMC Bar Chart visualization type. To use this visualization type, do the following tasks:
    To use this visualization type, do the following tasks:

    1. In the Display area, choose the display, mode, order and tooltip type for your panel.
    2. Select the settings for legends in the bar chart.
    3. Select the fields and units for the chart axes and data.

    On the basis of the query data, the Suggestions tab will display the list of the suggested Grafana visualization plugins. 

    If a panel displays an error while rendering the data, click Open visualization suggestions to see the list of the suggested panel plugins. 

  5. (Optional) If you want to add a cross-launch to another dashboard or an external URL from the dashboard, do the following:
    1. In the Panel tab, expand Links and click Add Link.
    2. Add a title and the URL for the link.

      Important: While adding a link to the Discover tab, the ISO date format is required


      You can add a cross-launch to BMC Helix Log Analytics > Discover tab with the date filter intact so you can view data from the selected date range in the Discover tab. To do this, ensure that you use the ISO date format while adding a link to the Discover tab.

      In the URL field, add the URL for the Discover tab. For example:

      https://<BMC Helix Log Analytics host>/loganalytics/app/kibana#/discover?_g=(filters:!(),refreshInterval:(pause:!t,value:0),time:(from:'${__from:date:iso}',to:'{__to:date:iso}'))&_a=(columns:!(_id),filters:!(),index:'1524107586_default_index_pattern',interval:auto,query:(language:kuery,query:''),sort:!())

      Ensure the following:

      • You selected the ISO format to add the from and to values as shown below:
        from:'${__from:date:iso}',to:'{__to:date:iso}'
      • You added single inverted quotes for the from and to values.
    3. Click Open in new tab and save the link.

  6. (Optional) Use other options in the Panel tab to further enhance your panel.
  7. Repeat these steps to add multiple panels to the dashboard. 
  8. Save your changes.


Best practice

Filters can enhance dashboard performance. Use filters while creating dashboards to avoid errors such as the following:

  • not enough memory for processing
  • unique timeseries exceeds 500000

You can use filters such as service name, host name, or entity name.


To edit a dashboard

As a tenant administrator or an editor, you can edit dashboards. You can add a panel to an existing dashboard, edit an existing panel, or remove a panel from the dashboard.

  1. Open the dashboard that you want to edit. 
  2. Do any of the following:
    • Add a panel as follows:
      1. On the top right corner, click Add  and select Visualization.
      2. Click Add visualization.
      3. In the Query section, select a data source for your dashboard and add a query for the data source.
        Use the Query Inspector button to inspect and verify your query.
      4. Repeat these steps to add multiple queries to the panel.
      5. Save your changes.
    • Edit a panel as follows:
      1. On the top right corner of a panel, click the Menu icon and select Edit.
      2. Update the panel and save your changes.

        Validate the query

        If you change the query configurations, ensure that you validate the query. Use the Query Inspector button to inspect and validate the query.

    • Delete a panel:
      On the top right corner of a panel, click the Menu icon and select Remove.
  3. Click Save .
  4. (Optional) Select one of the following options:
    • Save current time range as dashboard default—Select this option to save the current time range as default time range. This option appears after you change the time range in the dashboard. 
    • Save current variable values as dashboard default—Select this option to save the current filter values as default. This option appears after you change the filter values in the dashboard.
  5. Save the dashboard.


To configure the time range for a dashboard

As a tenant administrator or an editor, you can control the time range that is used in the dashboards to further refine your data. To change the time range:

  1. On a dashboard, click the Time Range icon  and select an absolute time range or a relative time range for your report.
    For example, filter the data in the dashboard by days, months, year, fiscal quarter, fiscal year, and so on. To filter data on a dashboard by fiscal time ranges, perform the following actions:
    • Select the fiscal time range and click Change time settings on the Time Range pop-up window.
    • Select the Fiscal year tab.
    • Select the fiscal year start month.
      By default, January is selected. Based on this selection, the data in the dashboard is filtered by the fiscal time range.

      Example

      Jordan, a tenant administrator, wants to view ticket resolution dates for the current fiscal year. He can filter the dashboard by This fiscal year to display tickets that have a resolution date within this fiscal year. However, if Jordan wants to see only those tickets that have a resolution date till date, he can select This fiscal year so far to filter the dashboard.

  2. Apply your time range.

The dashboard displays data for the time range that you selected.


To copy a dashboard

As a tenant administrator or an editor, you can copy a dashboard in a different folder with a different name. You can copy any out-of-the box dashboards and make your changes to the copied dashboards.

To copy a dashboard:

  1. Open the dashboard that you want to copy.
  2. Click the Dashboard Settings icon .
  3. Click Save as.
  4. In the Dashboard name field, add a name for your dashboard. 
  5. In the Folder field, select a folder for the dashboard.
    You cannot create a folder from this dialog box. To create a folder: 

    1. From the navigation menu , click Dashboards.
    2.  Click New > New Folder.
    3. In the Folder name field, add a name and click Create.
  6. If you want to copy the tags from this dashboard, select Copy tags.

    Tips for copying tags

    Use the following information to decide whether or not to copy tags from a dashboard:

    Copying the tags from a dashboard using the Dashboard Links option created with the tag condition as shown in the image to the new custom dashboard makes the new dashboard appear as a link on the original dashboard. However, if you do not want the new dashboard link on the original dashboard, do one of the following:

    • Disable the Copy tags option 
    • Remove the specific tags that do not interest you before saving the new dashboard.

  7. Save your changes.


To customize BMC Helix Dashboards home page

As a tenant administrator or editor, you can customize the home page of BMC Helix Dashboards. The home page of BMC Helix Dashboards is a dashboard with multiple panels that can be edited

To customize the home page, do any of the following:

  • Copy and edit the home page:
    1. Copy the home page of BMC Helix Dashboards. For more information about copying a dashboard, see To copy a dashboard.
    2. Access and edit the newly created copy of the home page. For more information about editing the home page, see To edit a dashboard.
    3. Set the the newly created copy of the home page as default. To set the default home dashboard, from the navigation menu , click Administration > Default preferences and select this newly created home page under Home Dashboard list.
  • Save and edit the home page:
    1. Click the  icon from the BMC Helix Dashboards home page and then edit the details and save.
    2. Access and edit the newly created copy of the home page. For more information about editing the home page, see To edit a dashboard
    3. Set the the newly created copy of the home page as default. To set the default home dashboard, from the navigation menu , click Administration > Default preferences and select this newly created home page under Home Dashboard list.

Updating home page videos

The video panels appearing on the BMC Helix Dashboards home page can be edited to change the videos displayed.


To delete a dashboard

As a tenant administrator or an editor, you can delete the dashboards you created. Do one of the following:

  • To delete a dashboard from the Dashboards page:
    1. From the navigation menu , click Dashboards.
    2. Select a dashboard.
      If dashboards are arranged in folders, click a folder, and then select a dashboard from the list.
    3. Click Delete.
  • To delete a dashboard from the dashboard settings:
    1. Open a dashboard and click the Settings icon .
    2. On the General page, click Delete.


To explore a query

As a tenant administrator or an editor, you can view query details from a panel or from the Explore page and troubleshoot any problems in the queries.

  1. Do one of the following:
    • On the top right corner of a panel, click the Menu icon and select Explore.
    • From the navigation menu , click the Explore icon .
  2. On the Explore page, view your query details and use the following buttons:
    • Split  — To view queries in a split view for comparison.
    • Time range —  To change the time range in the query.
    • Run Query —  To run the query. You can specify a time interval at which the query runs automatically.


You can perform many other functions on the dashboards, such as annotate a point on a graph or view the history of a dashboard. To learn about these functions, click here Open link .


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