Integrating LoadRunner 11 and SiteScope 11 with Authentication Enabled

So I’ve been silent for a while. Not because I haven’t had any good ideas but because I’ve just been too busy to sit down and write them out! Well, I’m taking the time this morning because this one is just too good to pass up. There seems to be a fair amount of confusion on this subject and after spending two hours this morning, I’m hoping that posting this will save someone else the time in the future.

I’ve been a performance tester now for a little under a year and I have to say that I really enjoy it. Even though I’m looking to move to another area pretty soon, performance testing is definitely challenging and very interesting. LoadRunner is a great tool (with its problems…but every tool has those) and I’ve really been fairly happy with SiteScope as well. After having a ton of trouble getting native LoadRunner Windows monitoring working (we never get it to work), we moved to SiteScope and it’s done what we needed.

Yesterday, I decided we should probably enable authentication for SiteScope since anyone in the company with the right URL could have accessed it. It’s not that I see a lot of danger in that but still, a completely unauthenticated site? There is definitely some sensitive information as well and it might be possible to use it to launch an internal attack. Best be safe and put a password in place!

Turning authentication “on” was really easy. All you have to do is set a password for the administrator account and voilá, you have a login screen presented to you on next access. Of the systems I’ve administered, that ranks at the top of “ease” in my book.

Tricky thing is this: now LoadRunner couldn’t pull over stats! I was receiving a <META> tag error (something about mismatching with <HEAD>). Rather than get into the details of the error message, which won’t do us any good, let’s jump to understanding the solution. There’s a lot of good material out there (this article, which is based on this doc from HP) but its all based on this strange idea of a “login1” which no one seems to explain. I tend to think I may have figured it out because I was able to get this working without using “login1” (not that there’s anything wrong with “login1”).

When you edit a SiteScope user, you specify the “login name” but the “account” is given automatically. In the case of the built-in administrator, the “account” name is “administrator”.

A screenshot from SiteScope showing the built-in administrator account.

The HP doc mentions that Topaz (the underlying system that is SiteScope) uses a “user index” rather than a “user name”. I would like to propose the following equations to make this understandable for us mere mortals.

  • HP doc user name = SiteScope login name
  • HP doc user index = SiteScope account

We don’t have any control over the “account” field (unless we go editing the <SiteScope install path>\groups\users.config file…) but that doesn’t mean we’re forced into using some strange “login1” value without understanding it.

So, if we want to connect LoadRunner to SiteScope as the built-in administrator account (and skip the need for additional accounts), how do we do that? Open the LoadRunner monitor INI found here.

C:\Program Files\HP\LoadRunner\dat\monitors\xmlmonitorshared.ini

And add the information in bold.

[SiteScope]
;ExtensionDll=SiteScopeMonExt.dll
MetricDataURL=SiteScope/cgi/go.exe/SiteScope?page=topaz&account=administrator
MetricListURL=SiteScope/cgi/go.exe/SiteScope?page=topaz&operation=config&account=administrator
ActivateCounters=1
DefaultPort=8888
DlgTitle=SiteScope Monitor
RefreshMetricList=1
EnableAccount=1
QueryLoginInfo=1

Now when you connect to SiteScope in LoadRunner, you will be prompted for credentials. Enter the administrator account’s “login name” (admin in my case) and the password. You should be up and running!

While you certainly can create another account that will get a “user index” of “login1”, why doesn’t HP simply explain what’s going on here instead of having instructions that are dependent on you adding only one user ID? What if you have 50 SiteScope users and you’d like to use the 47th for LoadRunner access? It seems that a simple explanation of the system (maybe even a nice diagram?) could really help people out and lower the number of support calls made for this issue.

Best of luck to you all in the wonderful world of LoadRunner (and SiteScope)! Signing off for now,

-Archimedes

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