FAQ

What is PushMon?

What is Push Monitoring?

Can I give you my website URL and you monitor it every N minutes?

Why use PushMon, I already use a website monitoring service?

How can PushMon help me?

How much does it cost?

How do I get started?

Why should I ping my PushMon URL?

When should I ping my PushMon URL?

Should I drop my current website monitoring service?

I just created a PushMon URL and integrated it in my script. How will I know if it’s working?

I just created a PushMon URL but I’m not getting any alerts when I should, what’s going on?

I don’t get IM or Twitter alerts, what do I do?

My code does not handle redirects. Is there a workaround?

Do you support DST?

We have a scheduled maintenance, how do I disable the alerts?

Why didn’t I get alerted when I did a ping 5 minutes after my schedule?

Something is wrong but I’m not sure what. How do I debug it?

Do you support international phone and SMS alerts?

Can I download and install PushMon in-house?

Can other people guess and ping my URLs?

What is PushMon?

PushMon is a monitoring service where the website, application, scheduled task or batch job “pings” the PushMon server instead of the other way around. PushMon will check if the “ping” has happened on schedule and if it did not, will notify the user.

What is Push Monitoring?

Push Monitoring is the process where the system being monitored pushes information to the monitoring server. PushMon is agentless in the sense that you don’t need to install any software on the servers. You just need to call the PushMon URL, and we have sample code to get you started.

Can I give you my website URL and you monitor it every N minutes?

Nope. That sounds like what regular website monitoring services do. You call us, we don’t call you.

Why use PushMon, I already use a website monitoring service?

PushMon complements your existing monitoring infrastructure. PushMon does not check your website every N minutes to see if it’s up or not. Most monitoring services already do that. PushMon monitors what existing monitoring services cannot. External monitoring services cannot check non public websites, internal applications, batch jobs and scripts. Internal monitoring services can check internal websites but not suitable for application, batch and script monitoring. PushMon fills in the gap.

How can PushMon help me?

There are many ways you can use PushMon. You can even get creative and use it as an alarm clock.

  • Get notified when your scheduled tasks fail, or has network connectivity issues, or if it didn’t run at all.
  • Add PushMon at the end of your batch jobs so you get notified if they don’t run. No need to wait for someone to manually check at 9:00 AM when your jobs run at 5:00 AM.
  • Call PushMon after your automated test scripts to make sure they run on schedule.
  • Call PushMon after your backup scripts run, so you know your backups are running smoothly. For complicated backups, you can even use multiple PushMon URLs so you can easily tell which stages have failed.
  • Use PushMon to monitor your monitoring system or watchdog process. Let it ping PushMon to tell it if it’s up and running.
  • Run a custom application to check the health of your website, application, database and/or machine every hour. Ping PushMon if every thing is fine. You’ll get alerted if something is wrong or the health checker failed to run.
  • Use PushMon with your Continuous Integration system so you get notified if it’s not running as expected.
  • Run it on a computer you want to make sure is up and has internet connectivity. No need to check on it anymore.
  • Expecting a file upload every Friday? Create a script that pings PushMon every Friday if the file exists. You’ll get notified if the upload does not happen.
  • Assign a PushMon URL to each of your team members and use it as a simple bundy clock. Get notified if someone does not come in by a certain time.
  • Use it as a wake up call. If you don’t click the URL by 6:00 AM, you get a phone call.

If you have other ways you use PushMon, please let us know and we can add it to the list.

How much does it cost?

PushMon is FREE and we will introduce paid plans in the coming months. For more information, please visit our Plans & Pricing page.

How do I get started?

Create your first PushMon URL now. All you need is an email address to send alerts to, and a schedule on how often we expect you to “ping” us. Schedule “every day” if you wish to try how the system works.

Why should I ping my PushMon URL?

PushMon works by assigning you a PushMon URL. You then need to access this URL on the schedule you specified. You pinging the URL tells us everything is fine. If the ping did not happen, that means something is wrong and we send you an alert.

If you just created a new PushMon URL, you will need to ping the URL before monitoring starts. This is to give you time to integrate the URL in your code, and we have sample code to get you started.

If you haven’t already, we suggest you go over the PushMon Quick Tour to give you an idea how the system works.

When should I ping my PushMon URL?

In general, you should call the PushMon URL after your process completes successfully. If the process ran but did not complete successfully, you would want to get notified. If you simply wish to know if a tasks starts, then calling the PushMon URL at the start of the process is fine. For a very long running process, adding PushMon URL calls on every major step is better than checking at the end. For example, say you have a test that runs for 6 hours. Pinging the PushMon URL every hour is a better than just pinging the URL at the end.

For by the minute and hourly schedules, you should access them as by the number of minutes or hours you specified. For daily schedules, you can ping the URL 24 hours before the scheduled time. If you use the “By Time” feature, you need to “ping” the PushMon URL before that time. By default, we check end of the day. Note that “By Time” does not work with “every minute” or “every hour”.

Should I drop my current monitoring service?

PushMon is not a replacement for regular website monitoring. These services check parts of your website every few minutes and are an important part of making sure your website is working. PushMon complements your existing monitoring systems since it can monitor things that these services cannot.

If you have something that does exactly what PushMon does, we suggest you keep that in place as a backup. It is always best to get a second opinion. If both PushMon and your existing monitoring process notify you of a failure, you are pretty sure it’s not a false alarm.

I just created a PushMon URL and integrated it in my script. How will I know if it’s working?

To check if your PushMon URL is active, you can access your PushMon URL in the browser. It will display “OK” if the PushMon URL is ready to be used. Note that monitoring will only start after your first access to the URL. This gives users time to integrate it with their code.

To check if you are calling the URL correctly, you can visit your PushMon Dashboard. That will tell you the last ping time and if the URL is fine (color green). Ping history is a feature in the task queue and is coming soon.

I just created a PushMon URL but I’m not getting any alerts when I should, what’s going on?

You will need to ping your URL at least once to start the monitoring process. This gives users time to incorporate the PushMon URL in their systems if needed.

I don’t get IM or Twitter alerts, what do I do?

For Google Talk users, please add “pushmongtalk@gmail.com” to your buddy list. For Yahoo! Messenger users, please add “pushmonym” to your buddy list. For Twitter users, please follow @PushMonApp so we can send you Direct Messages. If you are still having issues, please contact us.

My code does not handle redirects. Is there a workaround?

For convenience, your PushMon URLs are shortened, and gets redirected to the real URL. If your code does not handle redirects, you can use the long URL version. The pattern is http://ping.pushmon.com/pushmon/ping/{uuid}. For example the PushMon URL http://pshmn.com/eaFnY becomes http://ping.pushmon.com/pushmon/ping/eaFnY.

Do you support DST?

Yes! We have added DST support on 2/15/2013. We consider this is an experimental feature so please let us know if you have any issues.

We have a scheduled maintenance, how do I disable the alerts?

Login to your Dashboard and disable the PushMon URL. You can also keep it enabled to test if you will get the alerts as expected. PushMon down notifications will automatically stop after 3 consecutive alerts.

Why didn’t I get alerted when I did a ping 5 minutes after my schedule?

Daily schedules can be pinged 24 hours before the By Time. So if you accessed the URL within the last 24 hours, PushMon will consider that a valid ping. We are working on a new feature called Within, where you can specify have many hours before the By Time the ping should occur, instead of the default 24 hours. Stay tuned.

Something is wrong but I’m not sure what. How do I debug it?

Try accessing your PushMon URL in your browser. If everything is okay, it should return an OK message. If something is wrong, like the PushMon URL has been deleted or does not exist, you will see a human readable message in your browser.

Note these messages can also be consumed by a program. Try appending “?type=js” or “type=json” at the end of the URL. type=js is useful for including it in an HTML page. type=json returns JSON data than can be consumed by any programming or scripting language.

Do you support international phone and SMS alerts?

We currently only support phone and SMS alerts in North America. We are currently working on expanding coverage. We will post any updates to this FAQ and our blog.

Can I download and install PushMon in-house?

PushMon is not open source but can be purchased for installation in a corporate environment. Please contact us for details.

Can other people guess and ping my URLs?

We are using short URLs for easier handling, and these short URLs are encoded and cannot easily be guessed. We also have brute force checking in place to minimize the possibility of someone guessing your URLs. We do have plans on supporting long URLs in the future. If this is something that of interest to you, please let us know.

Make sure your websites, applications, scripts and background jobs are running.