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Using BESAlert for Error and Warning History

The Research in Motion (RIM) BlackBerry comes with a notification service called BESAlert, which sends you an email message when services start or stop, or when errors or warnings are recorded in the BlackBerry debug logs. The first problem I have with relying on BESAlert is that it runs locally on the BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES), so if the whole BlackBerry server goes offline or loses network connectivity, you won't get an alert. Second, you can't tailor BESAlert to notify specific people when certain events (e.g., loss of connectivity to the blackberry network) occur. If an account is configured to receive error notifications, it will get them all—even if the person reading the messages isn't responsible for what the error indicates.

For example, suppose a service stops or errors indicate the loss of Exchange connectivity. The first people to investigate such problems should be email systems administrators. However, loss of connectivity to the BlackBerry network is something that your firewall administrator should first look into. You really don't want to burden either administrator with reviewing irrelevant alerts. I prefer to use BESAlert to help keep a history of errors and warnings by sending the alerts to a public folder, and use more flexible tools such as Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM) or HP OpenView to help monitor the system for problems that need immediate yet specific attention.

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