I love to shop, and when I buy an outfit I look at style, color, cost, machine wash or dry-clean only (aftercare), is it suitable for the event I’m going to? Most importantly, do I look great in it? This last part is essential for me, and as a result I rarely purchase clothes online; maybe I’m old-fashioned, but I like to ‘try my clothes on before I buy’. But, it’s important to note that some online shops allow you to try before you buy by having an easy “sale or return” policy, attractive for many buyers.
It got me thinking about my work and how often I come across companies who look at spending a lot of money to move their IT to a different environment such as Cloud or to a new datacenter, maybe virtualize their environment, without ever realising that they could ‘try before they buy’. Providers of cloud/managed services and datacenter moves cannot a “sale or return” due to the commitment to make the change. This makes the offer of ‘try before you buy’ even more important.
We have all been aware of the importance of managing performance for many years and traditionally the main focus has been on the availability of our internal systems (systems/server application management). APM on the other hand is helping companies to gain a good understanding of their application performance and a key aspect of this is visibility on how applications perform across all types of networks. Availability has become, over the past decade, an intrinsic requirement in all application performance whether, its internal or external applications, we don’t think about it quite so much, but what is becoming increasingly essential is ‘SPEED’.
Speaking with delegates at a Cloud World Conference, I discovered that many are still taking a chance with their mission-critical applications. There seems to be a belief that in order to discover how their apps will work in a real world network, like a WAN or Cloud network, their only option is to conduct tests using the live network.
I was kinda surprised! I mean when do they do this?
At night! — The network loading won’t be the same as that encountered in normal office hours.
During the day! Apart from the risk to the business, if they do have an issue how can they replicate it again to test their fixes?
Some customers even contemplate producing a replica (in part at least) of the live network, until they see the bill, then they stop, give up and say the network is too difficult and put it out of scope!
Attending Interop in Vegas last month, I was surprised to note the number of vendors exhibiting their wares under the banner of APM – Application Performance Management. With all the different offerings, it was rather confusing. It got me thinking about a trip I’d taken the night before to an ice-cream parlour. I love ice-cream, and at the parlour there were plenty of flavours on offer. With APM, as with ice-cream, meeting customer demand is key- one flavour doesn’t suit everyone.
Looking at the offerings all touted under the umbrella of APM, I realised that some were obvious choices and others, well…