The UIC system obtains data from the browser and transmits it to the Experience Analytics capture server. This information includes mouse clicks, key presses, and change events. The information is transmitted to the server through an asynchronous HTTP POST to a web page on the server that acknowledges the request. All the data is available to Experience Analytics for later reporting or replay.
How data sessionization works
Sessionization provides a means for measuring user behavior.
A sessionization operation consists of a group of interactions that take place on your web site during a certain time frame. A sessionization operation identifies the browsing sessions of your web site visitors by storing the recorded events and grouping them, based on the time-intervals between each event.
Acoustic™ Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) can use one of many different methods for tracking sessions in the captured web traffic. Depending on the method deployed for your web application, Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) provides an appropriate means of identifying individual sessions.
The methods described in the following topics are listed are in the order of desirability from an Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) perspective.
Data sessionization with Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector
Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector is a lightweight utility installed on your web server or application server. It issues HTTP cookies containing sequential, unique identifiers.
Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector is the preferred method for tracking sessions in Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf).
How Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector works
For each request submitted to each hosting server, the Cookie Injector examines the request for the cookie or cookies that it is configured to issue. If the cookie is not present, a set-Cookie header is added to the response.
Things you should know about Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector:
- Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector supports the injection of multiple cookies.
- Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector can be configured to inject cookies into the request header for visibility by downstream Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) components.
- Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector can also add a response header that identifies the name of the server so that this information is available in hits captured by a Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Passive Capture Application server.
Because the Cookie Injector is designed specifically for the Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) CX platform, it provides the best method for sessionization within Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf). However, since it requires installation of software within your web infrastructure, it is an optional component of the platform.
Data sessionization in the CX Passive Capture Application server
If you can't install the Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Cookie Injector, the next best method for applying data sessionization is through the Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Passive Capture Application.
As a best practice, it is recommended to apply sessionization to captured data at the earliest possible juncture and before it reaches the Windows pipeline, where processing loads may already be significant.
At the point of capture, the CX Passive Capture Application can sessionize on a preexisting session cookie like
JSESSIONID. The session cookie is transformed into a 32-byte string that is then injected into the Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) request buffer as a TLTSID.
Note: For a PCA-based sessionization solution to work, the specified cookie must be persistent for the entirety of the session.
By default, the downstream components of the Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) platform are configured to use the TLTSID for identifying sessions.
Passive Capture can sessionize on multiple fields in the request.
Data sessionization in the pipeline
If you cannot apply sessionization through the PCA or have special requirements for sessionization, you can apply identifiers to the Experience Analytics request and manage sessionized traffic using the following Windows pipeline session agents.
How data sessionization in the pipeline works
After data is captured by PCA, the data is forwarded to the Processing Server, where it is passed through the Windows pipeline, a configured series of processing agents that review and modify the captured data based on user-defined rules.
Windows pipelines are configured through the Pipeline Editor.
Sessioning session agent
The Sessioning session agent can be added to your Windows pipeline to create a session identifier. When this session agent is invoked, it scans specified request field values for a matching session identifier. For example, in the session agent configuration, if you specify to look for
LSESSIONID as the sessioning parameters, the session agent first looks for JSESSIONID and then KSESSIONID and so on.
If a match is found is the request variables, the session agent applies a hash to create a 32-byte value that is inserted as the
TLTSID value in the request. This method of sessionization is considered inferior to sessionization on the PCA because it burdens the pipeline and occurs later in the data evaluation process.
Experience Analytics sessioning session agent
For special situations, the Experience Analytics Sessioning session agent can be deployed in your Windows pipeline to sessionize off specific user data in the request.
The data on which to sessionize is not limited to an HTTP Cookie. For example, you can perform sessionization based on a table lookup. This lookup examines one of 65,536 available buckets where hashes are stored and applies the hashes stored in the bucket until the session identifier is retrieved.
Hash values must be evenly distributed across the buckets, or hash search times may be impeded.
Depending on the traffic to your website, you might need to store more than 10,000 session identifiers per day, which can impact the lookup performance.
Data sessionization through CX UI Capture
In web applications where no suitable cookie exists, you can use the Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) UI Capture for AJAX library create a unique cookie on the client. This unique cookie can then be used for sessionization.
If you have installed and deployed the Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) UI Capture for AJAX library, you can configure it to create a unique cookie in the visitor's web browser. This cookie is posted with each request or user interface event for capture by the Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf) Passive Capture Application. Within Acoustic Experience Analytics (Tealeaf), you may use the captured cookie value to identify individual sessions.