iMacros is part of the Ipswitch family of tools and services.
by / Wednesday, 07 November 2018 / Published in Uncategorized

Starting January 1, 2019 AlertFox and associated services will no longer function as we sunset this Ipswitch product. However, that doesn’t mean that we are leaving users of AlertFox hanging.

AlertFox has been a workhorse for hundreds of companies over the years helping them with website uptime and performance monitoring. So it is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to AlertFox for all that it has done for so many.

Much of the functionality of AlertFox is already available in one of our other products, iMacros. iMacros actually has had a close knit relationship with AlertFox already, so users of AlertFox should be happy to know that all their macros that they used in AlertFox will work in iMacros. Believe it or not, iMacros is already doing much of the work within AlertFox, so switching completely to iMacros makes sense. AlertFox is merely a service for scheduling macros to run in the cloud and providing alert notifications and pretty looking reports.

If you haven’t done so, we recommend that all users of AlertFox transition to iMacros to continue be able to use their macros and test the performance of your website.

Making the Switch to iMacros

Stacy Clark and her IT operations team at iHire have already made the switch to iMacros from AlertFox and they couldn’t be more pleased with the transition. Stacy and her team’s main priority is making sure that back-end systems and services are up at all times. This was their primary reason for using AlertFox in the first place.

“We would have outages and we wouldn’t know about it until customers would call in,” Stacy explains. “So, we were very behind the times, I think. So that helped us get a lot more proactive, and that’s definitely something that our whole company has moved toward. That was our first step in really just making sure that our website was up all the time. We were then really able to start focusing on the customer experience and making sure that all of our different paths were available at all times for them.”

As it turns out, AlertFox was an integral part of Stacy’s operations stack. Then the news came that AlertFox would no longer be available when 2019 came around…

Stacy’s reaction when she heard that Ipswitch was sunsetting AlertFox was the natural reaction. She decided she wanted to find another vendor that could do what AlertFox does.

“We went and we tested out a bunch of different providers and we were just finding that we didn’t have the power to manipulate the tests with other platforms the way we were currently able to with AlertFox and the way we knew we would be able to with the iMacros Enterprise License.”

The answer was pretty clear for Stacy and her team. iMacros was the perfect product to transition away from AlertFox. Turns out she had all the important features and functions that AlertFox had in iMacros from the very beginning.

“The only thing that I would say that we don’t have that we previously had was the waterfall charts,” says Stacy. “We’ve looked at getting them and we have found other providers that we could hook up to and get that functionality. But as of right now, we haven’t really felt the push to move forward and get that functionality.”

With the support of her development team, it turns out the transition away from AlertFox was pretty effortless for Stacy and her operations team.

“We already had the iMacros scripting knowledge and it just kind of made sense to stick with it and stick with those tests and start rolling them out on our own. I don’t know that we really had any concerns. Our development team was 100% on board with this project with us. So, we knew if anything happened throughout the transition process, they would be available to get things where we needed them. So, it was just kind of a no-brainer for us to move that in-house and start running those on our own without AlertFox.”

Within two months iHire implemented a solution based on iMacros that was doing all the work of AlertFox and to some extent even more.

“I think we wanted a lot more out of AlertFox but we just didn’t want to have to spend more for each of the individual sensors. We’re able to do so much more testing now!” Stacy exclaims. And I mean, our marketing team, they do A/B tests all the time. Now, we have the functionality that we can set up an A path test and a B path test and have that data available for them, so that they know throughout their test that we didn’t push a code change that may have affected that either. So, really, this has been a great change for us moving forward with iMacros versus AlertFox.”

iMacros vs. AlertFox

As you can tell from iHire’s story about moving away from AlertFox to a custom solution based on iMacros is that there were concerns at first, but those concerns rapidly dissipated once they realized they actually got more power and versatility from using the powerful API included with the iMacros Enterprise Edition.

Here is a list of what iMacros can provide versus AlertFox.

Problems AlertFox solves that iMacros CAN too:

  1. Track website performance
  2. Test for website up/down
  3. Ensure full website / transaction functionality works as expected

Problems AlertFox solves that iMacros CAN’T:

  1. Out-of-the-box alerting and reporting
  2. Network-level trace (HAR files)

Other problems that iMacros solves:

  1. Form filling
  2. Data extraction (web scraping)
  3. Automating uploads and downloads
  4. Migrating data from legacy to cloud-based systems
  5. Automating any repetitive task in the browser

What Do You Need to Transition to iMacros?

With all that said, you probably are wondering how you can make the transition to iMacros yourself? It starts with purchasing an Enterprise Edition license and becoming familiar with the included scripting interface (API) used for developing custom solutions and integrating iMacros with other tools. The iMacros Wiki includes a comprehensive reference as well as plenty of examples to help you get started.

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