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December 10, 2014

Alert Widget Static Column Width

Update 2/10: This issue appears to be fixed in 2012 R2 UR5.

A while back I ran into an issue with creating some dashboards for SCOM.  Specifically, the issue came along when working with the Alert Widget.  I ran into the issue where columns in the Alert Widget would get very wide and one column could fill up an entire screen, rending the rest of the view essentially useless.  This is due to the “Auto” width feature in the widget.  While it is great to have Auto as an option, it isn’t always appropriate for all columns.

For example, some MPs, such as the Lync MP, have extremely long Path/Source/Alert Name fields that cause very wide columns, making it so wide you can’t see relevant data without scrolling.  In many of these cases, seeing the first ‘X’ characters of this field are sufficient for a dashboard, and can then dive in deeper to see the rest of the data when investigating the alert.

When trying to figure out how to solve this issue, it was found that the XML contains parameters to control column width.  By default, the UI creates all columns with “Auto” width.  In the XML:  Presentation -> Component Overrides -> ComponentOverrideID -> Bindings -> Binding PropertyID=”Columns” -> Complex Value Type –> Binding Property ID=”Width” -> SimpleValue Value=”Auto” is the default.  We can change the SimpleValue from “Auto” to something like “50” to force a static column width (similar to how done in the traditional Alert View.

Unfortunately, after much testing, I found this field does not work.  No matter value is specified for the Width, the field is not respected and “Auto” is how the column behaves.

I opened a support case with Microsoft on this issue, and finally found that this issue is officially a bug and will be fixed in UR5!

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