This documentation supports the 11.1 version of BMC Discovery.

To view an earlier version of the product, select the version from the Product version menu.

Software and infrastructure visualization

The visualization views show a dynamic, pictorial view of a selected part of your discovered IT infrastructure, and replaces the previously existing dependency visualizations. The following views are available:

  • Visualize - Software - Connected–focuses on software and communication between items of software and shows some details of the hosts and load balancers involved.
  • Visualize - Software–focuses on software and communication between items of software running on a host.
  • Visualize - Infrastructure–focuses on the connectivity to network and storage components. It shows the switches a host is connected to, underlying storage for host filesystems, VMs on VM servers, or if the given host is a VM, the server on which it is hosted.

The system determines the most appropriate view and automatically shows your visualization in that view, though you can switch to a different view if you prefer.

The Software and Infrastructure visualizations are supported for modern, standards-compliant web browsers only. The view works best in recent versions of Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox, and it is also supported for Microsoft Internet Explorer version 10 and later. It is not supported for Internet Explorer 9 or earlier.

Launching Software and Infrastructure Visualizations

When you view a single node or multiple node groups, a Visualize button is shown.

  1. When viewing any node, or selected nodes on a list page, click Visualize. The Visualize window is displayed showing details on the selected node, and the hardware and software it is communicating with. If you select multiple nodes from a list view, those nodes are shown along with the hardware and software they are communicating with.
    The image below shows the software context popup view for a Software Instance.

    Make the visualization large by clicking the + in the top right corner.

    Make the visualization occupy the full browser window by clicking the maximize icon in the top right corner. Exit full window mode by clicking the minimize icon in the top right corner
  2. To change the view, click Focus > Infrastructure in the side bar. 
    The infrastructure visualization preview is displayed. You can hide, create, or delete collections by using the modeling controls. The image below displays the infrastructure view.
  3. You can manipulate the image using the tools provided. For more information, see the visualizations tool set.

When viewing a large visualization, remember that it is still part of the node view page. Information which may be useful while working on a model is available by scrolling down. In full window mode, only the visualization is displayed, so you must exit full window mode using the minimize button. The Application Model Editor always occupies the full window; click Stop Editing to leave the editor.

Visualizations tools set

The following table lists the options you can use to manipulate a visualization and perform modeling tasks.

When you have saved the model, you can also export a model definition. Exported model definitions can be imported using the Model > Applications page.

Icon Description

Drag and select modes

Toggles the mode in which the visualization can be displayed.

In both docked (maximized) and floating (minimized) views, use the mouse scroll wheel to zoom in and out, and drag on the background to move around. On a touch device, pinch to zoom. Double-click inside the view to recenter and zoom the display to fit the window.

  
Drag mode

Drag the background to move the whole diagram. Drag individual icons to rearrange the view.

Dragging individual icons to rearrange the view is not supported in Internet Explorer version 10.

 
Select mode
  • Click a node to select it alone. Previously selected nodes are deselected.
  • Shift-click a node to add it to previously selected nodes.
  • Control-click a node to deselect an icon where multiple icons are selected.
  • Click the background and drag around nodes to lasso-select a group of nodes.
  • Hold Shift while dragging the background to add to the current selection with a lasso-select.
  • Hold Control while dragging the background to remove from the current selection with a lasso-select.

Focus

Enables you to change between the Visualize - Software - ConnectedVisualize - Software, and the Visualize - Infrastructure views. You can also change between the views using the drop-down selector in the header bar of the software context popup view. In each view, the node that represents the object you are looking at is highlighted. Click a node to view the object page of that node.

The Visualize - Software - Connected view is the only view from which you can begin application modeling. When you are modeling an application, the Focus control is disabled to ensure you remain in the Visualize - Software - Connected view.

 
Software - Connected

The Visualize - Software - Connected view focuses on software and communication between items of software and shows some details of the hosts and load balancers involved.

 

 

Software

In the Visualize - Software view, the node that represents the object you are looking at is highlighted. The Visualize - Software view focuses on software and communication between items of software running on a host, and is particularly useful for understanding what is running on a host.

 
Infrastructure

In the Visualize - Infrastructure view, the node that represents the object you are looking at is highlighted. The Visualize - Infrastructure view focuses on the connectivity to network and storage components. It shows the switches a host is connected to, underlying storage for host filesystems, VMs on VM servers, or if the given host is a VM, the server on which it is hosted.


Layout

Displays the ways in which the object nodes can be arranged. Once a layout has been calculated, you can further manipulate the view by dragging nodes, and by expanding and collapsing collections. Choosing the same layout again recalculates the layout, and can lead to a clearer view.

The following options are available under Layout:

 
Switch wide/tall
Choose a wide or tall layout depending on the shape of the nodes you have selected.
 Manual Groups and Model Definition

Provides options for viewing information node membership of manual groups and model definitions. Click the Groups icon next to the help icon in the top right to see a key to reconcile labels, indicators and groups.

 

Do not show
Do not show any group or model definition labels or indicators.  
 

Show indicators
Show indicators. Indicators are small color-coded shapes next to the node icon, a different colored one for each group.  Click the Groups icon to see a key to colors and group membership.
 

Show labels
 Show labels, colored labels containing the group name.
 LayoutProvides options for laying out the nodes. Experimenting with the layouts can reveal structure in the model.
 
Force-directed
Spreads nodes using a balance of attracting and repelling forces.

 


Impact
Shows impacting nodes at lower levels on the view than impacted nodes. For example, a host container impacts a contained host, which impacts a software instance. Arrows on the view show the direction of impact.
 
Root at top
Arranges nodes into a tree view with a root node at the top.
 
Application layers
Arranges the view into the functional layers of the application. Hosts are in a layer at the bottom of the visualization, and user access points, such as load balancers at the top of the visualization. The application layers control is not available in the Infrastructure view.
 

Relationship routing

Provides graphical options for routing the relationships between nodes.
 
Direct
Gently curved lines link nodes. The nodes are arranged for clarity, subject to the selected layout.
 
Orthogonal
Lines link nodes using horizontal and vertical section joined by right angle curves.
 
Avoid nodes
Straight lines link nodes where possible. The lines are curved to avoid crossing nodes.

Choose the node kinds to show. Select the node kinds to show or hide from the list of node kinds shown in the model. Depending on the application that you are modeling, you may see the structure more clearly by hiding certain nodes such as hosts.

You cannot hide Collections. Rather, when all node kinds held in a collection are hidden, the collection itself is no longer displayed.

You can export or print the current view for review at any stage. The images are produced without the associated tools and menus.

When you have saved the model you can export it as a model definition

 


Print Visualization

To print an image of the current view, click Print Visualization and select a paper size from the drop-down list. The browser print dialog is displayed. You must choose the same paper size in the print dialog.

 

 

Export as SVG

To export an SVG image of the current view, click Export and choose SVG.
 
Export as PNG

To export a PNG image of the current view, click Export and choose PNG.

 
Export Model Definition

When you have saved the model, you can also export a model definition. Exported model definitions can be imported using the Model > Applications page.

 

Provides a list of removed nodes and a list of unsaved removal rules. A count of removed nodes and unsaved removal rules is shown on the Removed Nodes icon.

  • Removed Nodes: Removed nodes are grouped by time of removal or node kind. Choose the most useful grouping using the Time/Kind selector. Once a model has been saved, not all nodes that have been removed are displayed here. For example, if a group of nodes are connected to the main visualization by one "joining point", it is only those nodes acting as "joining points" that are listed.
    • You can restore any of the removed node groups to the view by clicking the Restore button against that node grouping.
    • You can expand any of the removed node groups by clicking the + icon preceding the group name.
    • You can restore any of the individual removed nodes to the view by clicking the Restore button against that node.
  • Removal Rules: Unsaved removal rules are grouped by rule type. You can cancel removal rule creation by clicking the undo arrow next to the rule. To save all unsaved removal rules, click Save Rules at the top right of the visualization. If you save the removal rules, they are applied to all visualizations on the appliance.

Opens the current view in the application modeling editor. You can choose to:

  • Start a new model.
  • Add to an existing model.

This option is only enabled in the Visualize - Software view.

Information, zoom and undo/redo controls 

Information, zoom and undo/redo controls are provided at the top right of the screen.

IconDescription

Undo/Redo

Enables you to undo or redo recent operations. Where no operation can be undone, the undo icon is disabled. Where no operation can be redone, the redo icon is disabled.

When you save removal rules, the Undo/Redo queue is cleared.


Models and Groups
Provides information on any application models and manual groups to which nodes in the view belong.


Key

Shows a key for the symbols used in views.

Zoom slider

Click + to zoom in and - to zoom out. Or drag the slider up or down respectively.

The mouse scroll-wheel can be used to zoom in and out.


To zoom using the keyboard, press '+' or '=' to zoom in, and '-' to zoom out.

Zoom to fit
Click the zoom to fit control to fit the image to the window.

Context sensitive menu options

The following options are available from the context sensitive menu, accessed by right-clicking in the visualization window. When you right-click on a node, the context sensitive menu displays a header with counts of related, removed, and suppressed nodes. See Related, removed, and suppressed nodes in the context sensitive menu for more information.

Menu option

Description

Stop layout updates

Prevents any further layout updates. Sometimes with a large or complex model, the layout may take a long time to stabilize. Select this option to stop the updates.

Select all

Selects all nodes in the view.

Clear selection

Deselects all selected nodes.

Invert selection

Inverts the current selection. Nodes previously not selected are selected, and the reverse.

Keep only selected

Keep the selected nodes and remove all nodes that are not selected.

Remove selected

Remove the selected nodes.

Undo action

For example, Undo extend model.If you have performed an action, undo it and return to the previous state. You can also use the Undo arrow at the top right of the visualization, or via the keyboard with Control-Z.

Redo actionIf you have undone an action, redo it. You can also use the Redo arrow at the top right of the visualization, or via the keyboard with Control-Y.
Open in new tab/windowOpens the visualization, centered on the selected node, in a new browser tab or window.
Select nodeSelect a node. Available when right-clicking a node which is not currently selected.
Deselect nodeDeselect a selected node. Available when right-clicking a selected node.
Add to selectionAdd the node to the current selection. Available when right-clicking a node which is not currently selected.
Remove node

Remove the node. Available when right-clicking a selected node. Once a node is removed, it is added to the removed nodes list. You can see the removed nodes list by clicking Removed Nodes.

Node kind or group
• Never show
• Do not follow any connections
• Do not follow connections
to ...

  • Never show—Never show the selected node kind or group in visualizations and models. You can cancel the never show removal rule by clicking Removed Nodes and deleting the Exclude node kind or Exclude group rule from the removal Rules tab. You can save the never show removal rule as a global rule by clicking the global rule icon. If you save the rule as a global rule, it is applied to all visualizations on the appliance.
  • Do not follow any connections—Creates a rule to prevent following any connections from this node kind or group.
  • Do not follow connections to ...— Highlights the selected (source) SI and prompts you to to select a destination. Nodes that the selected SI is not communicating with are dimmed and cannot be selected. When you select the destination node, it is highlighted, and a rule is created which prevents that type of relationship being followed. Preventing particular types of relationship being followed is typically used to prevent a large number of relationships being followed from a server to agents running on the server. This operation is not required frequently as TKU patterns now suppress known occurrences of "over-linking". If you choose not to follow a connection to a node, that node is not suppressed, but that route to the node is suppressed. If the node is reached through another connection, it is displayed.

This is simply a display option, no nodes or groups are deleted. You can show the suppressed connections using the plus control described in Additional controls or the context menu header described in Related, removed, and suppressed nodes in the context sensitive menu.

Create Software InstanceShown when right-clicking a Candidate Software Instance. Opens a dialog to create a rule to create an SI from a candidate SI. See Candidate software instances for more information.

Do not create candidate SI node kind

Shown when right-clicking a Candidate Software Instance. Opens a dialog to create a rule preventing creation of this kind of candidate SI in the future and deleting any existing candidate SIs of this kind. The deletion of candidate SI is not limited to the current visualization or application model, it operates on the entire datastore.

Creating a rule to delete candidate SIs may affect other existing models. See Candidate software instances for more information.

Expand collection

A collection is an automatically created group of closely related items. Expand collection expands the selected collection so that the individual nodes are visible in the view. The nodes from the expanded collection are highlighted. You can see what is contained in the collection using Preview collection.

Preview collection

Shows a popup window with the expanded contents of the selected collection. There is an Expand Collection control in the popup window which enables you to expand the collection.

Collapse back into collectionCollapses the nodes from an expanded collection back into the collection. Available when right-clicking a node that was expanded from a collection.
Hide highlighting of collectionHides the highlighting of the named expanded collection.

Hide all highlighting

Hides all highlighting that shows the nodes from an expanded collection.

Open in new tab/window

Opens the node in a new tab or window, depending on your browser preferences. Available when you right-click a node.

Remove link

Deletes the selected link. Available when you right-click a link between two nodes.

This video (04:12) provides information on how to remove nodes and create rules in visualizations

https://youtu.be/afwz90tNggw

Additional controls

Hosts are displayed with a plus icon at the top left of the icon. When you mouse over the icon, it expands. Click the icon to show software running on that host.

Other nodes and collections also have a plus icon to show related nodes that are not currently included in the visualization, though these show only when you mouse over the node of collection icon. There may not be any related nodes, if not, the system displays the message, "No more related nodes".

Related, removed, and suppressed nodes in the context sensitive menu

When you right click on a node, the context sensitive menu shows counts of related nodes (+ icon), removed nodes (trash can icon), and suppressed (struck through circle icon) nodes. Click the item in the header to display those nodes in the visualization.

  • Show more related nodes—show nodes that are connected to the selected node, but are not included in the visualization. Click the icon to show the related nodes.
  • Show currently removed nodes—show nodes that are connected to the selected node, but have been removed. Click the icon to restore the removed nodes.
  • Show nodes that are suppressed by Exclusion Rules—show nodes that are connected to the selected node, but have been suppressed by exclusion rules. Click the icon to show the removed nodes.

See this video (03:27) which demonstrates how to manage related, removed, and suppressed nodes in visualizations

https://youtu.be/jChwuQiUaC4

Keyboard Controls

The following keyboard controls are available when manipulating the visualizations:

Key

Description

+

=

Zoom in

-Zoom out
Escape

In select mode, return to drag mode

When viewing the context menu, close the menu

When viewing a dialog, close the dialog

Control-ZUndo the previous action
Control-YRedo the previous action

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