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What kinds of events cause Network Spikes?



First up, we don’t have Browser, or I’d run straight off to the trace pages.

We are experiencing large spikes in Network time that bring our Browser apdex score right down into the red zone. We are experiencing more traffic than usual at the mo, so something is not happy, but we’ve handled lots of traffic before, and the traffic itself is fairly consistent, not spiking.

My question is: browser pro account notwithstanding, what kinds of events or situations can cause such spikes?

We are tentatively wondering whether New Relic isn’t reporting correctly on the APM side of things to help us diagnose this. Thinking along the lines of there should be slow transactions reported via APM.


Hi, @elanor: A couple of points to consider:

  • The network time reported in Browser is whatever is left after subtracting web application, DOM processing, and page rendering from the total page load time. A Browser Pro subscription wouldn’t provide any additional information about why network time is spiking.

  • New Relic Browser measures page load time in the end user’s browser. The fact that you’re seeing network spikes doesn’t mean that APM is reporting incorrectly. Time spent on server-side code appears as Web application time (purple) on the Browser chart; network (brown) reflects the time the user’s browser spends sending requests and receiving responses.

You might try running some queries in Insights, for example:

Which countries and cities are contributing most to high network times?

SELECT sum(networkDuration) AS 'Highest network time' 
FROM PageView WHERE appName = 'My Application' 
SINCE 1 hour ago FACET countryCode

SELECT sum(networkDuration) AS 'Highest network time' 
FROM PageView WHERE appName = 'My Application' 
SINCE 1 hour ago FACET city

How many users in Great Britain are accessing my site on mobile devices (which, presumably, have slower data connections)?

SELECT count(*) FROM PageView 
WHERE appName = 'My Application' AND countryCode = 'GB' 
SINCE 1 hour ago FACET deviceType


Thanks philweber, the insight SQL you sent showed my much as I suspected - clients are where they say they live and are using the expected browsers.

I surmise then from our data and these spikes that our server apps are handling requests fine - something else is choking how quickly responses are met… we’re going to tweak the config files.


Again, the slowness may be at the user’s end, in which case it is beyond your control. If you have New Relic Synthetics, you can set up a Simple- or Scripted Browser monitor to simulate your users’ behavior. Synthetics eliminates variables such as computer and connection speed to give you a more consistent view of your site’s performance.