Visualize your cluster with Service Fabric Explorer

Service Fabric Explorer is a web-based tool for inspecting and managing applications and nodes in an Azure Service Fabric cluster. Service Fabric Explorer is hosted directly within the cluster, so it is always available, regardless of where your cluster is running.

Video tutorial

To learn how to use Service Fabric Explorer, watch the following Microsoft Virtual Academy video:

Connect to Service Fabric Explorer

If you have followed the instructions to prepare your development environment, you can launch Service Fabric Explorer on your local cluster by navigating to http://localhost:19080/Explorer.

Understand the Service Fabric Explorer layout

You can navigate through Service Fabric Explorer by using the tree on the left. At the root of the tree, the cluster dashboard provides an overview of your cluster, including a summary of application and node health.

Service Fabric Explorer cluster dashboard

View the cluster's layout

Nodes in a Service Fabric cluster are placed across a two-dimensional grid of fault domains and upgrade domains. This placement ensures that your applications remain available in the presence of hardware failures and application upgrades. You can view how the current cluster is laid out by using the cluster map.

Service Fabric Explorer cluster map

View applications and services

The cluster contains two subtrees: one for applications and another for nodes.

You can use the application view to navigate through Service Fabric's logical hierarchy: applications, services, partitions, and replicas.

In the example below, the application MyApp consists of two services, MyStatefulService and WebService. Since MyStatefulService is stateful, it includes a partition with one primary and two secondary replicas. By contrast, WebSvcService is stateless and contains a single instance.

Service Fabric Explorer application view

At each level of the tree, the main pane shows pertinent information about the item. For example, you can see the health status and version for a particular service.

Service Fabric Explorer essentials pane

View the cluster's nodes

The node view shows the physical layout of the cluster. For a given node, you can inspect which applications have code deployed on that node. More specifically, you can see which replicas are currently running there.

Actions

Service Fabric Explorer offers a quick way to invoke actions on nodes, applications, and services within your cluster.

For example, to delete an application instance, choose the application from the tree on the left, and then choose Actions > Delete Application.

Deleting an application in Service Fabric Explorer

Tip

You can perform the same actions by clicking the ellipsis next to each element.

The following table lists the actions available for each entity:

Entity Action Description
Application type Unprovision type Removes the application package from the cluster's image store. Requires all applications of that type to be removed first.
Application Delete Application Delete the application, including all its services and their state (if any).
Service Delete Service Delete the service and its state (if any).
Node Activate Activate the node.
Node Deactivate (pause) Pause the node in its current state. Services continue to run but Service Fabric does not proactively move anything onto or off it unless it is required to prevent an outage or data inconsistency. This action is typically used to enable debugging services on a specific node to ensure that they do not move during inspection.
Node Deactivate (restart) Safely move all in-memory services off a node and close persistent services. Typically used when the host processes or machine need to be restarted.
Node Deactivate (remove data) Safely close all services running on the node after building sufficient spare replicas. Typically used when a node (or at least its storage) is being permanently taken out of commission.
Node Remove node state Remove knowledge of a node's replicas from the cluster. Typically used when an already failed node is deemed unrecoverable.
Node Restart Simulate a node failure by restarting the node. More information here

Since many actions are destructive, you may be asked to confirm your intent before the action is completed.

Tip

Every action that can be performed through Service Fabric Explorer can also be performed through PowerShell or a REST API, to enable automation.

You can also use Service Fabric Explorer to create application instances for a given application type and version. Choose the application type in the tree view, then click the Create app instance link next to the version you'd like in the right pane.

Creating an application instance in Service Fabric Explorer

Note

Application instances created through Service Fabric Explorer cannot currently be parameterized. They are created using default parameter values.

Connect to a remote Service Fabric cluster

If you know the cluster's endpoint and have sufficient permissions you can access Service Fabric Explorer from any browser. This is because Service Fabric Explorer is just another service that runs in the cluster.

Discover the Service Fabric Explorer endpoint for a remote cluster

To reach Service Fabric Explorer for a given cluster, point your browser to:

http://<your-cluster-endpoint>:19080/Explorer

For Azure clusters, the full URL is also available in the cluster essentials pane of the Azure portal.

Connect to a secure cluster

You can control client access to your Service Fabric cluster either with certificates or using Azure Active Directory (AAD).

If you attempt to connect to Service Fabric Explorer on a secure cluster, then depending on the cluster's configuration you'll be required to present a client certificate or log in using AAD.

Next steps