I am interested in reporting on which apps are in use, how much they are in use, by whom, where, etc.
I'm looking for an app assessment tool that eliminates or minimizes the need to ask or manually sift through instances to find out which apps are being used and how they are being used.
Instances may have been handed down from one admin to another, so admins may not have the right insights. People who requested tools in the past may be gone. Others may not know that the functions they rely on come from apps. Finding how apps are used can be extremely time-consuming.
There is no way to create such an app.
The problem is that apps can implement so many different things, in different ways, you cannot be
The only way to track who is using an app is to have something coded into the app to record its usage.
You could also try thread tracing, which could tell you what classes are being called as people use the system, but that's a massive piece of analysis because you'd have to try to trace each thread back to a person who triggered the call, and, worse, you don't necessarily know that they actually used the app, the thread might be just checking to see if it is the right time to use the class.
Take a look at the apps you have installed at the moment, you'll probably find some provide workflow functions, some do reports, some give you gadgets, some add screens for different types of data, some add custom field types, some add admin functions, some add macros, and so on.
You can see from that that there is no one single way to see how an app is being used. You have to look at each app, work out how it gets used, and investigate where it could be used, then ask your people if it's actually in use.
However, there are some tools that can do some of it.
Thanks @Nic Brough _Adaptavist_ ,
I understand that it can be difficult, and maybe Microscope does this, but there must be some way to aggregate things like custom fields that are non-standard - how many issues have those fields, and of those, what percentage have values?
In this case, it's not a migration I'm assisting with but trying to identify plugins that can be eliminated. I can only think of doing this by identifying plugins that are not being used and then proving that to the interested party - but I can't think of a good way to do this.
I really appreciate the ideas you provided, especially the macro use report and the script registry - very helpful, thank you!
@Nic Brough _Adaptavist_ on a side note, I know this is unrelated, but you have a ton of experience with this forum. I never received a notification about your reply - this happens periodically here, so I sometimes miss beneficial feedback. Do you know what could cause this?
The custom field one is a bugbear for me - much as I tell people the database is not suitable for reporting and they shouldn't even bother to look (and that remains true if you're reporting on issues and projects), when I'm doing field use analysis, I go straight to it. Just for the basic "how many entries does a custom field have globally" list. It gets unpleasant if you want to take that up to "entries per project", but as long as you run that query at a quiet time, it's ok.
Doing this in the UI is long-winded and dull, but often the easiest way to do it
I usually find myself with two windows or tabs open.
Record what you need about the field from the dashboard, and then edit the filter, changing to the next field on the list. Run it, save it, go back to the dashboard, and, well, you can guess the rest.
I've put in a request to add something that could do the whole cycle for every field in one run (click button, wait, get CSV with loads of rows of cf-name, project, number of entries)
By the way - give microscope a go - get an evaluation licence for it, there's no restricted functionality and the "workflow function" report will tell you everywhere an app is providing a workflow function in an active workflow.
(And if you think you can use it again in the future, it's only $10 at all user tiers, because it's only for admin use, general users have no use for it at all)
I'm not sure about missing notifications, we went through a phase a year back where reply notifications seemed to go randomly missing, but that was fixed (think it was just the volume meant the mail server was struggling). Recently there'ss been a change where I've started to get mails about new questions being edited even though I'm not watching them (yet), but I doubt that's rrelated.