Data Center Monitoring – The Good, Bad and the Ugly: 10 Application Performance Management Issues in Data Centers

electrical-2476782_1920As I’m sure you all know, today’s environments produce complex issues. All kinds. The Impact on APM (Application Performance Management) and conversely APM’s impact on those issues is no more visible than in the confines of the modern data center. Some of your applications may be running super fast, while others might feel like they’re stuck in NYC rush hour traffic. APM is brought in to make your organization run smoothly and ensure service is top notch. When things run smooth, Data Center Management and IT personnel all look like they can do no wrong. But…. That’s when things are going right. When not an ample amount of attention is paid to APM, that’s when things start falling apart, people point fingers, but in the end, it’s those in charge of keeping APM running that are usually blamed. On the other hand, issues in the data center can have an adverse effect on a smooth APM operation. APM can also support such issues as capacity planning. In this post, we’ll share with you 10 Application Performance Management Issues that we’ve seen occur in Data Centers. For the good, bad, and ugly.

Capacity Planning

IT departments have their work cut out for them as they try to ensure applications are running steadily to meet service levels. At the same time, they need to predict, both consistently and reliably for future growth. This is a major challenge in itself. Knowing current capacity requirements coupled with accurately predicting future requirements while steering clear from over spending and overbuilding a system, is just one area where APM fits like a glove.

APM can ensure proper current capacity planning as well as for the future by conducting data center monitoring of applications critical to the business and ensuring that they have the capacity they need to run.

IoT

The Internet of Things is poised to surpass all other challenges to become one of, if not the biggest challenge faced by IT applications. With so much data emanating from so many different sources, an APM solution must ensure data center monitoring of all the systems ingesting that data from the plethora of sources.

Real Time

With the increased adoption of systems that claim to be real time (source to analysis in under a second), the ability to maintain levels of service in both the analysis of data and reporting of that data have never been more critical to the health of an IT organization. For APM, to be properly configured to detect any anomalies or spikes in processing times is an added challenge for the modern data center.

Complexity

Today’s environments are complex to say the least, and as technology advances, they are sure only to get more so. Think of a collection of systems that APM monitors as the cogs on a wheel, where one defective cog can bring the whole wheel down. For example, take a look at all the applications that are served by the web. Sure, users all look at it as the final product, but a lot of work goes into delivering that final product, making it work by a myriad of applications. If a database is sluggish this can affect the user experience. With so many moving parts, APM isn’t just about monitoring the application as a whole, it’s about ensuring data center monitoring is applied to those cogs and reporting any performance related issues occurring in the data center.

Securing Data

In the Data Center, data security is a constant challenge. Thus, data center monitoring must be constant as well. Just a single data breach can cause damage running in the millions of dollars. Damage can run from the loss of intellectual property, exposing highly sensitive data, and the theft of personal data that can damage customer trust and the brand itself. Every data center administrator faces a slew of challenges, with risk management and the securing of transmitted data topping the list. These issues have a profound effect on the application’s performance and there really is no room for error.

Application Design

With so many companies preferring to outsource application development, rather than keeping a development team, quality issues are abound. Without a solid APM solution in place, so-so app performance can leave development and stay so-so in production and not be detected. Even with an APM solution in place, these problems are not so easily cured. The solitary way to avoid an application performing poorly is to ensure the application’s development is subject to strict guidelines, a lot easier to do in house when you have control.

Testing

Most of the applications today are being developed in simulation labs without being tested on the plethora of global networks to test performance on those networks. This only carries a slew of unknowns when headed for application deployment. These unknowns put a big strain on APM when application testing is not fully enforced.

Mobility

The number of people using mobile is increasing with each passing hour. So is the diverse mix of mobile devices. This puts a huge strain on application performance, and any APM solution along with the IT team must be up to the task of monitoring the performance of their application on every possible device, or at least the most popular.

Communication

With application environments becoming increasingly complex, the capacity for even one person to understand everything going on in the data center, so an application can be delivered to the business at the performance level required is a very tall order. It is not one that many if any IT organizations can claim. By utilizing the power of crowd sourcing and data center personnel collaboration coupled with knowledge systems, organizations can ensure smooth application delivery.

Virtualization and Cloud: Keys to the Dynamic Environment

Just a single application today can be so complex with single events sprawling across multiple environments and layers in both cloud and virtualized environments. This alone can create havoc and greatly impact application performance, all the way from the application layer, to the application’s infrastructure right down the line to the user. APM and data center monitoring needs to be in effect.

 

About the author: Niv Ben Aris is the VP of Sales & Operations at Correlsense.