The Biggest “Feature” You Missed in RightAngle S23+

Charles Eberhardt, Director of Support
April 16, 2024

RightAngle is approaching 30 years in the market and is clearly here to stay. In the latest version, S24, customers have a new implementation of mass, the beginnings of integration with Avalara, and architectural advancements such as …. licensing service monitors? Wait. Why would a customer need a license for a service monitor when it is a core component that has been included for decades? Odd. 

If you’ve been reading the literature on the latest RightAngle releases (S23+), you are aware the vendor introduced the licensing of service monitors. For those not immediately familiar with the technology, a service monitor is simply a task processor that runs in the background to load BOLs, prices and a wide variety of other things. Without them, the system simply will not function, and generally, the more of these you have, the faster your system will run. 

You might ask why they’d choose to require a license for those items, especially when most customers host the system on their own hardware and not in the vendor’s cloud. The likely conclusion is this will soon be a new recurring cost to customers. That will be a tough pill to swallow for RightAngle clients already living with ever increasing price escalators. 

How does this impact me?

Additional cost is on the horizon. Licensing service monitors creates a situation where the vendor can now charge you when additional processing power (in the form of service monitors) is required. It is likely they will grandfather existing thread counts to ease this transition. However, if you choose to implement a new business line into RightAngle, thus increasing your transactional load, suddenly you will need additional service monitors, which could soon equate to additional cost. It is a peculiar move, and one customers should be aware of when considering upcoming corporate growth. 

What should I do about it?

Start by contacting your vendor account manager to understand how licensing these service monitors will impact your organization. Consider asking questions like:

  • What happens if we move to S23 or beyond and need to increase the amount of service monitors we currently utilize? 
  • Is there a charge for the licensing of these service monitors? If so, what does that cost? 
  • Can the vendor explain why they chose to suddenly license these components when, for decades, they have been included in the core solution?
  • If service monitors are now licensed, what steps is the vendor taking to ensure their internal development is building toward more efficient code in the future and not less? 

Starting the conversation with the vendor will help you understand the why of this decision and how it impacts you, specifically, in the future. 

Background Information

What are RightAngle service monitors?

For a slightly deeper dive, service monitors are the processing units which consume and calculate data in RightAngle from either a user’s action (e.g., saving a deal) or scheduled process (e.g., BOL load, price load, snapshot run). A service monitor performs its work using distinct assembly lines called ‘threads.’  The thread count per monitor can be adjusted but is generally between 8 and 16. 

These service monitors are Windows Services that continually check for new tasks to process within the RightAngle task queue. Responsible for everything from the valuation of transactions to producing invoices to executing snapshots to auto-matching your movements, the system simply does not function without them. 

How does the licensing work?

In S23 and beyond, RightAngle now requires a license for service monitors. The licensing mechanism considers a total thread count the service monitors can use, limiting your maximum active service monitor threads. When the Windows Service is started for the service monitor, it checks out the number of threads listed in the service monitor configuration file. Once the licensed thread limit is reached or the starting of a service monitor would exceed the limit (for example, your configuration says to run 16 threads but 14 are available), the system does not allow additional service monitors to start. 

At this point, assuming processes are delayed due to a lack of available threads, you would want to discuss the idea of adding more available threads. With the new licensing, there could be a cost to add additional threads.

Triarc Guidance

Triarc is here to advise or guide you through the benefits and challenges of upgrading to or implementing an S23+ version. Contact us today for more information or assistance so we can help you love RightAngle again!

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