Why the Cloud is Nothing New and What this Means for IT Performance in 2013

One of the major technology trends as perceived by the IT media this past year has been cloud computing. Amazon has had tremendous success with AWS (Amazon Web Services), although recent, high-profile outages may temper expectations somewhat. Other industry giants such as Microsoft, Citrix, and VMware continue to market their cloud services as vital parts of their overall business. But when you get past the buzz, what exactly is the cloud? What is new or different about it? I say, not as much as others would lead you to believe.

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Improve Your ROI by Monitoring User Experience and Reducing Data

ROI is becoming an increasingly important consideration for IT pros as the environment they work in become more complex and harder to manage.  This trend is gathering more attention and has recently been the focus of numerous discussions within the APM market. APMdigest published an article about 12 ways to gain faster ROI from APM which consolidates contributions from experts throughout the industry (Gartner, EMA, and Ovum). Tips include choosing the tool that will be most relevant for the job it must accomplish, considering the ease of deploying and managing the performance monitoring tool and acknowledging that you cannot achieve your IT goals immediately but rather in small steps. One tip that especially rings true is the importance of the user experience and the ability to monitor application performance in real time. Understanding things from the end-user’s perspective is crucial and should therefore be a top priority within an IT department. The end users are the people interacting with your application and their satisfaction can ultimately impact the performance of the business as a whole. A survey of IT managers by NetForecast revealed some of the key metrics that they want their performance monitoring solutions to measure in order to gain visibility into the user experience. Top responses include page response time, number of transactions processed, query response time, traffic flow data and server errors. Gathering this data is essential in providing valuable insight into understanding your end-user experience. Data reduction is another way to positively impact ROI. With the rise of big data, many businesses today are carrying around more information than they actually need.  Clearing out repetitive data and shrinking large files will open up extra storage space and can free up both bandwidth and room in the data center. This allows IT employees to focus on top priorities and increases their productivity. ROI is a key area of focus for IT pros and discussions around this topic can result in a variety of benefits. Gaining visibility into the end user’s experience provides a new and useful perspective on an application’s performance. In addition, clearing out unnecessary data left on an organization’s servers will cut costs and reduce distractions. This added value leads to more productive discussions and faster results from IT departments. How do you plan to monitor end user experience and reduce unnecessary...

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BYOD, Cloud and Mobile Require New Monitoring Tools

You’re under increasing pressure from IT trends you’ve heard before: BYOD, cloud and mobile (and even social) — and it’s becoming a huge challenge to keep your systems running optimally. APM could help.

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Report: Good Monitoring Tools Could Be Key in Mobile-Cloud Shift

As the enterprise makes the shift to cloud and mobile apps, the key to a smooth transition could be how well your application monitoring tools can handle newer technologies.

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Why APM is Crucial for Cloud-Based Environments

For IT pros, the incessant chatter regarding cloud and distributed environments is nothing new. What we’ve been seeing lately (especially for those who read this blog regularly) is a transition from conceptual, nebulous, marketing driven cloud to cloud in action. Organizations are now ready to make the leap to distributed environments and are expecting their IT teams, as always, to handle the change without interruption. A recent report  discusses the framework top performers are using. Top performers in this area follow a PACE (Pressures, Actions, Capabilities, Enablers) framework.  They recognize the pressures that disruptions in business transactions cause, take action to identify and solve these problems, have defined baselines for performance standards and capabilities, and utilize tools that enable them to monitor and manage such issues. These strategies are especially important for companies who have employees that are distributed in various locations.  Employees need to communicate with one another and access  information reliably in order to be productive, regardless of their location.  Businesses that include headquarters, branch offices, and remote locations, for example, cannot afford to give priority to any one location. Old models of addressing performance issues centrally may no longer be the best solution.  Instead, companies that address these issues at each of their locations are better aligned to see higher levels of performance and reliability among their applications.  Employees will be more motivated and engaged in their work if they can reliably communicate and complete business tasks. This mentality is important when considering the distribution of information as well.  A survey by RightScale, a cloud management firm, found that once a company begins to utilize a cloud strategy, it is highly likely to adopt more cloud projects soon after.  In addition, some companies are now maintaining various types of clouds, including public, private and hybrid.  This multiple cloud system helps the company better ensure the availability, portability, and scalability of its applications.  With this increase in cloud-based systems, best-in-class performance becomes even more important. When monitoring application performance on multiple clouds, the key to success is experience. Organizations that utilize APM solutions for a longer time have been able to build a larger knowledge base from which to create a more effective infrastructure. Organizations can therefore optimize performance by detecting and resolving problems more proactively, with more agility, so that they do not escalate into larger issues. It is paramount that organizations have such tools in place for problem detection, performance optimization, and virtual migrations. And I’m sure IT pros would appreciate this crucial...

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