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Sematext FAQ

General

What should I do if I can't find the answer to my question in the FAQ?

Check out monitoring FAQ and logging FAQ. If you can't find the answer to your question please email support@sematext.com or use our live chat.

Is there an On Premises version of Sematext that I can run on my own servers?

Yes there is. Please see Sematext Enterprise.

Does Sematext integrate with ChatOps like Slack and HipChat? How about PagerDuty or custom WebHooks?

Yes, see integrations, alerts FAQ, and alerts docs.

Can I use Sematext for (business) transaction tracing?

Yes, see Transaction Tracing.

Is there an HTTP API?

Yes, see API Reference.

Sharing

How can I share my Sematext Apps with other users?

There are two options: Account Sharing or App Sharing. With Account Sharing, you invite others to your whole account, so they get access to all your Apps, dashboards, notification hooks, alert rules, etc. They can also create new Apps under your account and invite other users. Depending on the role you assign to invitees, they may be able to administer your Apps, dashboards, users or even billing info (change app plan, assign credit card, etc). Account Sharing is very convenient because as soon as a new Sematext App is added to your account or new dashboard is created, all users added to your account get access to it. Of course, the level of access depends on the role you initially assigned to each person.

Unlike Account Sharing, App Sharing is restricted only to a particular app. Nothing besides the shared app is accessible to the invited user (for example, dashboards are at the account level can can thus be shared only through Account Sharing). This option is useful if you want to be very restrictive about which apps can be seen by others or what kind of effect those others have on your team. With plain App Sharing guest can't see or edit alert rules created by your team, they can't use your team's notification hooks, etc.

Account Sharing and App Sharing is not exclusive. You can use both of these two sharing types at the same time. You could Share Account with some users, and use App Sharing to share specific apps with other users.

To share Account with other users, go to https://apps.sematext.com/ui/team/accounts
To share App, go to https://apps.sematext.com/ui/team/apps

What is the difference between OWNER, ADMIN, BILLING_ADMIN, and USER roles?

There are 3 common roles available when Sharing Account and Sharing App (OWNER, ADMIN, USER), and one role which is specific only to Account Sharing (BILLING_ADMIN).

Each account has one OWNER (if you created some account, you are its OWNER). Each app also has one OWNER (The OWNER of an app is OWNER of account under which some app was created. If you create an app under your account, you are the OWNER of that app. If some user with whom you've shared your account creates a new app under your account, you are again the OWNER of that app. However, if that user creates a new app under his own account, he will be its OWNER).

Each account and app can have 0 or more ADMINS and USERS. If you added some user as ADMIN to your account, he also automatically gets the ADMIN role for all your apps (account role is transitive to app role).

ADMIN users can modify everything under your account/app except billing related info. They can: create/delete/update all dashboards/alerts/subscriptions/users... Users with USER role have read rights on everything except billing info (they can view all reports, dashboards, alerts...). They can even create/edit their own alerts and subscriptions on apps from shared account (but can't edit other user's alerts/subscriptions, only ADMINs can do that). If they were added to an Account (not to an App), they can also create their own dashboards and add other USERs to your account.

There is a special role available when Sharing Account - BILLING_ADMIN. This role has all rights as the standard ADMIN, but can also access/edit billing-related info. The only thing this role cannot do is change password of your account.

When would I want to add someone as BILLING_ADMIN?

When you don't have a credit card that should be used for charging, but some other person has it, you should invite this person and give them the BILLING_ADMIN role. Similarly, if you created an account and defined a credit card, but now want somebody else to take care of all billing related activity (assigning plans and credit cards to various apps), you'd give them the BILLING_ADMIN role.

What might a typical use of roles for an organization with many employees look like?

Typically you might have one person create an account via https://apps.sematext.com/ui/registration. This account might be considered a "parent" account for your whole organization.
Since the person who created the account would be its OWNER, this person is typically (but not necessarily) a team leader or manager, or somebody whose responsibility is to oversee servers/operations, typically in production. This person might then choose to share his/her whole Account with every other person from the team/organization to allow others to easily access all apps created under that account.

Some of the invited users might be given the ADMIN role, which gives them read and write (and invite) rights. Other invitees might get the USER role, which gives mostly just read rights (plus ability to create/edit their own dashboards/alerts/subscriptions which are available to everyone under the shared account). In some cases, account OWNER will not be able to handle billing related info and will want to invite 1 or more BILLING_ADMINs who will be able to define/edit/delete credit cards and choose plans to be used for apps under your account.

Alerts

Can I send alerts to HipChat, Slack, Nagios, or other WebHooks?

Sematext has integrations for Slack, HipChat, PagerDuty, VictorOps, OpsGenie, BigPanda, general WebHooks, email, and more. See integrations and alerts docs.

What are Threshold-based Alerts?

Threshold-based alerts are classic alerts where you choose a metric and a numeric value (a threshold) that, when reached or crossed, triggers an alert.

What is Anomaly Detection?

Anomaly Detection uses a number of statistical algorithms to determine if a metric has become anomalous, meaning that its recent values have become significantly different from the "base" – the normal/typical values of that metric. An example of an anomaly is a sudden spike or a sudden dip in a metric value. Sematext can trigger alerts when such anomalies are detected.

What are Heartbeat Alerts?

Heartbeat Alerts are extremely useful for keeping an eye on your applications. You create a single Heartbeat Alert for each Monitoring App. From then on, Sematext will watch all instances of your application that are a part of that Monitoring App. Should Sematext not hear from any one of your application's instances for more than N minutes, it will alert you. N can be as low as 2 minutes and you choose it yourself when you create a Heartbeat Alert.

Security

See monitoring FAQ and logging FAQ.

Billing

How do you bill for infrastructure and server monitoring?

See monitoring billing FAQ.

How do you bill for Docker container monitoring?

See monitoring billing FAQ.

Which credit cards are accepted?

We accept all major credit cards - Visa, MasterCard, American Express, JCB, Discover, and Diners Club. We can also invoice you if you want to pay via ACH or bank wires.

Can I be invoiced instead of paying with a credit card?

Yes, we offer a pre-payment option through invoicing. When you select this option simply email us and let us know how much you want to pre-pay. If you want that credit to cover some period of time you'll want to consider how many apps/servers/containers you need to monitor, whether they are running 24/7, or your faily log volume and retention, and which plan(s) you'd like. We'll invoice you and, once we receive your payment, we'll add this amount as credit towards your Sematext account balance. This amount will then be burned down, based on your usage, on a monthly basis. We'll notify you before your balance gets too low, so that we can repeat the invoicing process before your credit runs out.

How often will I get billed?

We bill on a monthly basis and send an email to notify you of the amount.

Can the billing email be sent to our Accounts Payable/Accounting instead of me?

Yes, when you select your plan and payment method you will also be able to enter an alternative billing email address. Also, search this FAQ for information about BILLING_ADMIN role.

Do I have to commit or can I stop using Sematext at any time?

There is no commitment and no contract. When/if you want to stop using Sematext you simply stop sending us your metrics and/or switch to the Free plan.

Can I get invoices?

Yes, just log in and look under Account > Billing > Invoices. If you don't see invoices there then you likely need to switch to a different account. To do that look for a pull-down menu at the top-right of the UI.