cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Call to THWACK: Finding APM’s Place in Today’s Hybrid World

Community Manager

Earlier this year we asked you about your experiences managing applications in today’s hybrid world—and how the hybrid IT infrastructure is shifting as business apps move to the cloud. Here’s what we found:

  • 60% are managing and monitoring applications, with 21% already moving business applications to SaaS
  • Those who have moved business applications to SaaS say 20% or less of their business apps are hosted in the cloud
  • 14% have already implemented cloud/container infrastructure, but 36% aren’t even considering it yet

The question is, where does an application performance monitoring (APM) strategy fit into all of this? We know from the recent SolarWinds report Driving Business Performance Through Application Performance Management that having an APM strategy, including robust yet easy-to-use tools helps drive businesses forward.

We have the numbers and survey results, but now we want to hear from you:

  • How important is APM to your job?
  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall?
  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?
  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?

Share your thoughts by September 12 and we’ll put 250 THWACK® points in your account!

11 Comments
jeremymayfield
Level 15
  • How important is APM to your job?  Application performance is huge especially when we are talking our SAP application.   Being able to see issues before users do can be a big help when you have a global presence and a large program like SAP.   We monitor many items but since SAP went to the cloud, it's even more important to monitor it.   This helps me know which finger to point at which vendor.   SAP, SDWAN, or back at me.
  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall? Overall I would say the benefits fall in the areas when we can be proactive vs reactive.   We need to watch trends, look at spikes even when there are no reported issues.   being able to see the details behind what is happening is so important with enterprise and local applications.
  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?  We monitor our user experience with other tools, but are considering using the monitoring with SolarWinds as an option.   We value our End User Services based on end user experience ratings.
  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities? What to do when the internet goes down, how can we still report, view, etc.  I need my cloud based apps, my local apps, all of them.   So what is SW backup plan when their system fails?   What is the best case for working with Non SolarWinds programs and creating integrations?
rschroeder
Level 21
  • How important is APM to your job?
    • We don't have APM, nor do we have a suitable substitute.  Apparently it's not that important to us.  However, I disagree.  Too much time and money is spent chasing causes of slowness and not knowing what users' experiences are and not understanding the specifics of every step that can cause their experience to improve or degrade.
  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall?
    • The lack of APM results in poorer understanding of causes of users' issues, resulting in increasing costs for troubleshooting and increasing amounts of customer annoyance.
  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?
    • I'd love to, but haven't the budget or clout to make it happen.  I think APM is important to a successful IT department and the businesses and customers it supports.
  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?
    • We should learn the sweet spot where the cost of buying/installing/managing APM for every application is less than the cost of users' frustrations and the time wasted on troubleshooting by guesswork.
i_like_eggs
Level 13
  • How important is APM to your job?
    • I mange around a dozen SolarWinds pollers and sql instances, starting up a few years back now I have heavy relied on a different combination of sam & wpm to be my wing man, mainly sam but APM metrics have helped me to curve the time investigating and given engineers reliable data so they can manage and isolate issues quick.

               It has been especially important for me when I need to really divide time between projects and SolarWinds bau.

  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall?
    • Without apm it would be very difficult to know what’s going on with all the different pollers, especially managing other SolarWinds pollers that are a managed service.
  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?
    • I am seeing an increase in the WPM especially with a couple of our customers, to help align SLI’s for SaaS applications. On a side note, I would like to see more on the SCM and see the ‘real value’ to be able to put it in as a must have along with NCM, NPM and SAM (NTA), The SCM I was playing around with was 1.0 but the features I wanted were in 1. 2.. damn windows 2012. 
  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?
    • i have notised more and more customers taking information from the solarwinds db and feeding it into splunk while solarwinds is doing more the heavly lifting while splunk is just gathering everything. guess we have SolarWinds LEM but never played around with that.. on another side note, I really liked QoE side of things in SolarWinds, all the TCP handshakes NRT and ART stuff is cool and would love to see this more for cloud applications (I might have missed the boat if it has already lol)
dsimpkins
Level 12

APM is the wrong acronym, it should be UXM (User Experience Monitoring)

What is application monitoring doing? it's monitoring the application to make sure the user experience is what is expected or at least consistent. voice traffic is give a MoS score https://www.voip-info.org/call-quality-metrics/ ) to rate the call experience rather than how many packets were dropped or delivered late. APM/UXM should work on the same principle.

Our UXM platform today has the means to show how well our application is performing but at the same time break it down into the domains, if you have an APM tool monitoring a popular news site you will see that for the complete page to load successfully it relies on third party ad's, facebook and all kinds of other external sources. if the tool is only reporting on the main site that's not a true representation of the user experience.

So in answer to the questions:

  • How important is APM to your job?
    • Massively, when a server goes down the first question asked is "Is the application still up?". With all the HA capabilities our there it's very rare a single server going down takes down an application so when it does the urgency and associated panic is calmed and you go from a major incident to a fault.
  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall?
    • We drive all our alerting and reporting from the user experience
  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?
    • Absolutely
  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?
    • APM has always been that fluffy tool but it doesn't get the credit and recognition it deserves, in today's world with information at our finger tips making people wait is never good (for businesses or internal application teams) and UXM is that first responder telling you about an issue before the local news agency/social media account does.
df112
Level 13
  • How important is APM to your job?
    • Very important.  Everything we do as an IT shop has a customer somewhere, be it internal or external.  Making sure those customers are well served is our highest priority.
  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall?
    • Overall it has a significant impact.  I can't think of a single application that we deliver that is single component or runs on a single host.  Everything is multi tier, often involving 3 or more hosts/services.  A problem with any one of those layers can cause anything from slowness to a total outage.  Making sure we are aware of UX impact and more importantly catching it before the customer even knows is very important.  On the negative side if we don't catch it then it's affecting thousands of users and costing us either good will or money or both.
  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?
    • We have had UXM as a high priority for a number of years.  I wouldn't say we're increasing the concern because it was already pretty high on our list.  Monitoring/testing is one of those things you're never really done with tho - if something changes (and what doesn't?) your previous solution may not catch the new failure mode or fails to identify when service is degraded, and that's always a bad thing.
  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?
    • I think flexibility is key.  Although we are definitely using cloud solutions, the notion that it's an all or nothing thing or that everything will be in the cloud is (IMHO) incorrect.  There are a few startups or web based companies that can pull that off, but for most enterprises going all in with the cloud makes no sense from an ROI perspective.  It's a case by case basis.  In the case of hybrid apps you need to be able to look at it end to end wherever it's hosted.
thulsey
Level 9
  • How important is APM to your job?
    • It's basically 99% of my job. The other 1% is swapping nodes from SNMP polling to Agent.
  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall?
    • Immensely. Without it, we would never know when a product/service is experiencing issues. Some of our monitors can detect issues even before they happen.
  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?
    • For customer-facing products, we use a substantial amount of UX monitoring. We are looking to increase in the future.
  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?
    • It's a slow process migrating things to the cloud. Transitioning monitoring strategies in a seamless manner substantially helps with this migration.
ferrashoo
Level 12

My answers are, kind of, the same ones that have been stated already. I can relate, I don't do my job blindfolded.

App monitoring should be integrated into every support groups diagnostic/troubleshooting steps. If you can see what is happening, you can resolve the issue quickly!

We are using this feature more and more, the day will come when apps will be lined up to have their software monitored.

Don't "step on my cloud", it's internal...not everyone wants their stuff out there. Just a thought.

vinay.by
Level 16
  • How important is APM to your job? - It plays a very important role, in today's world and our business line its always been a hybrid infrastructure solution and things don't quite work the way it use to in the past, where we use to monitor the infrastructure and then drill down to the application that's hosted on it.Now the focus is on the business application rather the infrastructure and its the other way round, business line with cloud as their base are not even bothered about the infrastructure and they totally rely on the application monitoring, as cloud providers already have built in bare monitoring for the infrastructure.

    

  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall? - If your application is working fine without any hiccups is what in focus these days, it always about end customer satisfaction which indeed is directly proportional to the growth of the business, it doesn't really matter how many cool features the business application has unless it function's without any down time and that's the reason why APM is in focus at the moment.

    

  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern? I wouldn't term this as a concern but i would rather term it as the main area why APM is in focus. User experience in today's world has top most priority.

  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities? Monitoring in the past used a simple principle like Server -> Storage -> Network -> Application. Once cloud kicked in and with all the companies moving towards hybrid infrastructure like cloud + on prem dc's business application monitoring is the utmost priority to any business, we always had a application view in various forms in Enterprise Monitoring tools but they weren't really that effective. The latest tools like APM solutions majorly focus on this, they basically monitor the application first (be it real user or user exp etc) and from there they drill down into the particulars like whats happening on your server or storage or virtualization or network. This provides them with an overall picture of what's happening with your application and infrastructure that it is hosted on, and it is as well easy to track the root cause if your application isn't functioning as expected, be it user exp or application performance or code level monitoring or security audits or sql threads on wait/deadlock or storage issues or network latency etc ....... All under one single pane of glass. But as i said the trend is from Application perspective, we first verify if app is running as expected and if it isn't we then drill down into the particulars as to where the actual issue is.
davej
Level 9

•How important is APM to your job?

As an Application Support Manager responsible for teams to support our application suite, monitoring and alerting and capacity reporting APM is key to my teams doing their jobs. In addition, we make the APM tools available to business operations teams to help them make informed decisions.

•How does it impact and benefit your business overall?

The impact of what is being reported by APM allows analysis on hotspots, trends etc and enables development squads to encompass changes/upgrades to systems in their sprint planning much earlier. Being able to analyse trends and quickly react as needed/required is a massive benefit to the business.

•Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?

We are building in more user experience monitoring on a daily basis. This is helping us on a support basis and the business to understand where there are previously unrecognized issues.

What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?

We all need to keep up with the 'latest' trends and make the most of the capabilities that are being presented. In fact we should be analyzing this and leading the way not being led by the nose.

jhandberg
Level 13
  • How important is APM to your job?

           Requests for monitoring of applications, services, and processes are increasing.  I don't know if that capability was widely advertised to our teams previously, but they are becoming aware of it. 

           The problem is we are in a multi-domain environment and have been having some trouble with cross domain authentication to get some monitoring pieces working with SAM.

  • How does it impact and benefit your business overall?

           If we can get this all working and set up the proper dependencies for efficient alerting to the correct teams, this should help time to resolution.

           We have both public facing and internal applications to monitor, and this affects different teams in the organization.

  • Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?

           This would be a nice edition and has been suggested.  There may be a cost to this that some are cringing about.  Money is tight.

  • What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?

           Our organization is only in the early stages of hybrid deployment.  There is an extensive on-site VMWare deployment, where all of our monitoring currently occurs.

           Much of the talk here is about automation and getting things into monitoring without delay and manual intervention. 

           This is hard to do with our current Orion deployment configuration.  There are too many dependencies to make sure alerts get to the right teams.  Resolving or streamlining this would be advantageous.

dalekad
Level 7

How important is APM to your job?

Very, we monitor different applications in our environment, sql, iis etc. we use apm on a daily basis

How does it impact and benefit your business overall?

benefits by alerting to potential issues which we can develop strategy going forward. Means we do things in a better way 

Are you considering user experience monitoring of apps as an increased concern?

Our levels are fine at the moment, should we increase our app's this will need to be reviewed going forward

What more should we learn about APM and today’s hybrid IT realities?

that it is an ongoing process for today's development, i can only see the demand being higher, further along the road we go