|By Larry Dragich||
|May 26, 2014 11:00 AM EDT||
Adopting an Application Performance Management (APM) strategy will help you manage the quality of the Customer Experience. The challenge is that APM has evolved into a mosaic of monitoring tools, analytic engines, and event processors that provide many solutions to different problem sets.
When you step back and look at the big picture it all comes into focus, but when you're trying to rationalize one technology over another, things aren't so clear at close range. Product overlaps, ongoing costs, and ownership come into question, and then someone will eventually ask why so many tools?
It is important to show how an APM solution can tie into existing systems, by articulating the big picture, so that IT leaders can conceptualize the value coming from the new solution. How you articulate the Manager of Managers (MoM) concept and how it will support the APM strategy is essential for buy-in (see Figure 1).
As you begin, start by identifying the dual purpose toolsets (i.e., provisioning and monitoring), already in the organization to incorporate as part of the APM solution. Then consider choosing a technology that is "application aware" to spear-head your real-user-monitoring (RUM) initiative. When done correctly, Application Aware Network Performance Monitoring (AANPM) can become the linkage between silos, providing relevant performance data in a context that all groups will understand, and subsequently trust.
I have found that the simplicity and ease of use with agentless monitoring (i.e. wire data analytics) is a great place to start. It should have the capability to provide insight for the protocols specific to your critical applications (e.g., XML, SQL, PHP, etc.).
Since agentless monitoring is "always on" it will be ready to monitor any new applications launched into production within its purview. There's no need to worry about managing a fully burden application life cycle for a typical agent installation, although when the time comes agent monitoring is recommended to fully instrument an application.
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