Survol is Primhill Computer's exclusive tool to analyse and investigate running applications. Survol is a Python agent and a web interface aiming to help understand an existing information system, perhaps legacy applications.
A set of machines, processes, databases, programs etc .... all
communicating with each other,
manipulating your data, and whose software architecture has become, with time, complicated, difficult to understand, and
WHO IS IT MADE FOR?
Survol is designed for two classes of users:
users have something in common: They must quickly grasp a large software architecture, maybe constantly changing:
With its visual interfaces, Survol is also a team-building tool,
bringing clarity, helping to give the same names to the same things.
in charge of software projects, who must to follow development tasks,
infrastructure evolutions, by looking directly into what's being
developed. They need a non-technical tool, to extract information from
a running application at a synthetic level.
newly-comers on legacy software, who must be grasp quickly an existing
information system, using many, too many technologies.
WHAT DOES IT DO?
Survol allows to display any software entity or resources running on a
computer. Simply said, it is a library of Python scripts, each of them
displaying a facet of an information system.
These scripts are run by Survol agents, these agents running on one or several machines of the user application network.
The web interface then displays and aggregates the heterogeneous information
coming from the agents.
It is not necessary to have an agent on all machines because many
scripts can get information from different machines than their own. Strictly said, it is possible to run without
data model of Survol is based on classes, each of them defining a type
of computer resources: Processes, machines, files
etc... Heterogeneous data are modelled into a single dramework,
then aggregated with an RDF inference engine, creating a global vision
of the business information processing. It can display for example the
tree of processes and subprocesses ...
or a directory and its subdirectories: Each file is displayed with some
basic properties. One can click on each box to get further information,
as no keyboard is needed. No special technical skills are needed to use
Survol. The general details one can grasp about the various interaction
between components of an information system, greatly help its
understanding: Links between machines, processes, databases and any
other components are visible. Useful dependencies are extracted without
fully respects the security policy of the network it is running on: If
the agent runs on a privileged account, it will extract many
information. But even with a dummy account, it will still be able to
retrieve useful data about the analysed system. Survol does not ever
modify or change anything on the machines it is running on, so it is
this displays the shared memory segments and the processes mapping
them. Everything can be combined in graphic reports, everyone can
understand. The data model borrows extensively its ontology and
terminology from Common Information Model, an existing industrial standard. Therefore, it interacts freely with CIM implementations such as Microsoft WMI,
OpenLMI, OpenPegasus and
WBEM, and any other software based on this standard.
is very easy to add new scripts, to display a specific kind of
information, only your application defines. When resources types are
not defined by CIM, Survol adds its own resource classes, in a very
If a user application defines its resources classes, it is very easy to
add ones, along with associated scripts, in open or proprietary source
code, without complicated setup. Just create a directory and add a new
script at the right place, that's it.
internal data model built by Survol agents, is a set
of triples: Subject, relation, object, homogeneous to Resource Description Framework (RDF), the core data type found in the Semantic web, a standard which provides a framework allowing data to be shared and reused across applications.
RDF, especially appropriate for Artificial Intelligence applications,
is an abstract model for Survol data, which are extracted from
heterogenous sources information system. Survol displays these data in
open-source project: Everyone can freely download and use it.
Survol can have add-ons: It is very easy to customize Survol by adding new
scripts and classes: One just need to add Python scripts at the right
place: Their returned information can now fully integrate with the
rest of Survol model. Survol fully uses Python documentation features
to expose your add-on and its integrated documentation.
mode, where the rendered view cannot be modified but is designed to be
nicely printed for reporting or presentations. The appearance is
similar to the interactive one, but the layout does not depend on User
uses Graphviz, an open source graph visualization software.
- The plain HTML mode, convenient to generate reports in plain text, reports which can be saved, and compared.
CAN I TRY?
Survol is installed on this Linux machine, in different configurations:
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
is free and open-source, and will stay so. But users might invest into its
installation, consulting, training. Or possibly into proprietary development of
specific scripts, adapted to their own needs.
See the FAQs, the architecture, installation notes, or Doxygen-generated pages here.
Please contact us for any question.