IT Ops

Subtle but important: three smart performance pieces

Three of my favorite writers on performance topics recently made important points all having to do with finding the right balance in challenging circumstances. More than easy slogans quickly memorized, they bring deeper insight to technical topics.

Emphasis on flexibility elevates IT to strategic realm

IT Ops often writes about quantifiable technical returns-to-investment with clear business significance: improvement in uptime, lowered cost, better application responsiveness and so on. Many of the same engineering initiatives of systematic end-to-end performance management, devops acculturation and so on, pay off in less tangible but more strategic ways, though.

DevOps and Metrics

As you probably know, “DevOps” is a methodology that attempts to narrow the divide between developers and operations. By definition, it does no good to speed up code delivery if operations is not equipped or eager to roll out changes at an increased velocity. DevOps proposes a release manager role and increased communications to bring the parties together.

In the ER, IT is Like Heat, Power and Light

Some systems are mission critical. But when systems go down at a hospital, it’s not just mission critical, it’s critical to life. Dr. John Halamka is a former ER doctor who turned to technology. He is now CIO… Read More

How Does APM Affect the Bottom Line?

APM Digest dives into the issue of how Application Performance Management affects financial results. They talked to IT Operations managers, directors, and VPs and quote them extensively. Before we explore this list a bit, what does “bottom line” mean? There is some confusion about that.

IT important part of "balancing act" of modern medicine

In certain industries, information technology is much closer to being a matter of “life and death” that’s otherwise just a cliché: when computers go off-line in air transport, chemical refineries, hospitals or utilities, lives truly are put at immediate risk.

Eliminate outages: the engineering challenge

Outages this summer at Google, the New York Times, Microsoft, and numerous smaller-scale organizations brought attention to information technology (IT) outages. Is there a technical fix for all this downtime? Is application performance management (APM) a ‘silver bullet’ which slays such problems?

‘Continuous Operations’ a great idea — but details of execution still matter

Mike Kavis advertises “continuous operations” as the new way of delivering software we need in today’s elastic cloud-based computing environment where “zero downtime deployments” are required. The ideas here are so vital that it’s worth our time to clear up a few of his imprecisions in presenting them.

Do What Matters: Improve System Performance

One of engineers’ hardest jobs is to do what matters. What parts of application performance management (APM) are hard for you? What distracts you from the measurement and optimization you know will give you the biggest “bang”?

Service and Subscriptions: The Future of Software

With Adobe’s abandonment this spring of “shrink-wrap” delivery, the software industry reaches a milestone that only a few years ago looked more like dreamland than reality. A couple of conclusions are clear: “service” and “brand” are the only values left to sell, and consumers simply expect everything to work.

Mobile particularly needs DevOps

Different organizations make DevOps work in different ways. Some emphasize “breaking down the silos“; for some, continuous deployment is at the heart of added value. Most crucial over-all is that technology and methodology align with the culture of the organization.

Monitor even what you trust: a non-linear imperative

“Trust, but verify”: by way of Suzanne Massie, this slogan applies to information technology (IT) even more deeply than you might realize. This is particularly important for application performance management (APM) and security.

TestOps: catching a new trend in performance management

Earlier this week, I wrote a breezy introduction to “DevOps” for those in need of a few executive-level references. “Break through the silos” is the emphasis of this attempt to reunite Development and Operations after decades of having them specialize and grow apart.

Quickstart guide to DevOps

Organizations are still figuring out what “DevOps” means to them. A couple of recent brief articles, along with two already-popular books, will help.

Bottlenecks and flowmeters: models for performance management

In “The Hidden Bottleneck“, Bob Wescott invokes 19th-century agronomy to make the point that observation of a bottlenecked system mostly tells you about the bottleneck, not the whole system. This is eminently practical advice.

Assets and Liabilities in the Data Center

Abundant advice is available on such build-or-buy questions as whether to rely on public clouds, private clouds, hybrid clouds, leased datacenters, on-premises buildouts, and so on.

Webpage bloat accelerates

New networking technologies, energy-saving processors, gestural inputs, highly-parallelized algorithms–there’s an abundance of exciting innovations in information technology (IT) to consider.

Whither VDI

My second article for Real User Monitoring, almost a year ago, closed with consideration of virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), a “thin-client” approach to management of what end-users see. It’s time to return to VDI and its latest trends.

Strategic thinking in the datacenter

Like other great inventions–money, twelve-bar blues, baseball–it’s crucial to make “return on investment” (ROI) work for you, rather than the other way round. That principle applies quite concretely in the datacenter or in information technology (IT) operations. Dysfunctional… Read More

As Jordan Novet aptly styles it, “Yes, people really are still debating the definition of SDN” (software-defined networking). While “IT Ops” labeled SDN a “Trend to watch …” late last year, the industry as a whole still hasn’t… Read More