End-to-end monitoring solutions should monitor all of the infrastructure’s components, yet some solutions only monitor one part of the bigger picture.
The term “end-to-end” relative to transaction monitoring is very over-used. End-to-end Website monitoring, end-to-end server performance monitoring, end-to-end database monitoring, and end-to-end network performance monitoring. The list can go on and on when, in fact, they only provide monitoring for one small part of the bigger picture, as illustrated below.
Monitoring server performance traditionally refers to ensuring that CPU utilization and memory consumption have not reached maximum levels. However, this does not promise true application availability. Traditional end-to-end monitoring tools provide a dashboard that shows the health of each one of the individual components within the data center. But what if someone forgot to re-connect a network cable after maintenance or what if a load balancer was configured incorrectly and is not executing a proper round robin? An alert will indicate that something is wrong with the servers that are still connected when, in fact, the problem is that traffic is simply not being equally distributed. A network performance monitoring solution could be implemented, which would aid by monitoring the usage of the network, but that is not a single end-to-end solution anymore.
What if a runaway process in one server is “bombing” a second server with requests? The server monitoring solution will blame the server that is being bombed by the server which has a runaway process running on it as opposed to indicating the source of the problem.
If you only take the user’s tier into account, real user monitoring could be considered an end-to-end solution for that tier alone. With real user monitoring, you can see both ends of a transaction—hence the claim to provide end-to-end. What about everything in the middle? What action is to be taken when a problem is detected by the end-user experience tool? What if the root of the problem resides within the database or the mainframe? Shouldn’t an end-to-end solution be able to take care of everything, including triage within the data center? Website performance monitoring is important for understanding the quality of service that your customers are receiving and there is a lot of value in that, but an end-to-end solution should also help you find the cause of the problem along with simply reporting its existence.
What do the following components have in common: the user’s desktop, a firewall, a proxy, a load balancer, a Web server, an application server, a message broker, a database and a mainframe? The answer is transactions. The only way to provide a true end-to-end solution is by monitoring every transaction from the moment any user clicks any button, and continuing all the way through each tier. Only business transaction management (BTM) solutions can promise that.
Performance monitoring tools that are not showing end-user performance are not focusing on what is most important to the business. Website monitoring tools that send synthetic transactions to the site and check response times are not showing what users are really experiencing. Database monitoring is important, but without knowing the context of that problematic SQL server transaction, resolution can be a shot in the dark.
End-to-end solutions must be able to monitor all of the infrastructure’s components. Transaction monitoring solutions do that automatically since they monitor the object that ties all of those different components together—the transactions. BTM solutions enable a drill down that begins from each transaction type that is running on the system and ends with the smallest event that composes a single transaction instance. In this manner, not only are you assured that everything is running smoothly, but when things start to go wrong you can perform immediate triage and resolution.
SharePath by Correlsense is the only single solution on the market today that can provide true end-to-end transaction monitoring. From the moment a user clicks any button in a monitored desktop or Web-based application, SharePath monitors the transaction through the entire infrastructure, through proxies, Web servers, load balancers, application servers, message brokers, databases and mainframes. Learn more.