Chaos in IT Operations
Recently Michael Vizard wrote in Channel Insider on how 'Chaos Characterizes IT Operations Management'. He noted that, "the survey, which was conducted by BlueStripe Software, a provider of transaction and application monitoring software, reveals that the tools most organizations rely on are generally considered ineffective, and most of the processes used are labor-intensive."
Vizard explains that "Given the fact that labor is the single most expensive element of the total cost of IT, any conversation about reducing that cost—either through the adoption of a better tool or a range of managed services—is likely to be well-received."
We are in full agreement here, and below we explore how IT operations needs to re-examine the current management tools in place in.
New Gen Tools
Facing this new reality and challenges, the new generation of tools needs to be able to aggregate dynamic information coming from multiple cloud vendors, and to translate this data into actionable metrics. These tools should be seamlessly integrated into dynamic resource management and automated deployment. They should recognize and support traditional software stack and underlying virtual and cloud infrastructure. Growth of such tools will be a critical factor in the expansion of enterprises to the cloud as they will need the same level of safety and control to make the transition, like their internal data centers have provided.
System management tools need to take a new approach
System management tools for cloud need to take a new approach, seeing activity in real time and identifying the affected components. This can be seen in the sense of when the server CPU activity suddenly jumps by 60%, then you need to know what type of server it is. If it is the application server, then you should be able to identify which one, and what is the configuration. Even more importantly, know what the actual configuration should be to investigate the reasons of the CPU jump.
Understanding and managing servers needs even more attention
One of the most pervasive shifts in IT has been the shift from manual to automated and from reactive to proactive management. So while attention is now getting placed on deployment and setting up servers, the need to understand and manage servers needs even more attention, especially that in many cases servers are provisioned automatically as well as the applications running on them.
Tools Must Realize Value Rapidly
So the new set of tools that will be supporting agility and providing flexible control and be able to deliver information, in spite of complexity, the right amount of information to the user that needs it, those are the tools we will see coming into the market in the years to come.
Tools Need to Identify Problematic Situations for Taking Action Fast
Managing IT environments with intelligent automated analytics will drive more sophisticated proactive processes like, for example, comparing environment states, validating releases, and verifying changes consistency to provide today's IT operations with actionable operational information helping to prevent or identify critical issues. So rather than continue to feed a bloated system, we should strive to simplify, rebuild and implement configuration management based on intelligent analytics, and turn the situation around from 'monitoring sucks' to what we can do about performance and availability.
Still Using Yesterday's Technology?
So in this advanced, modern world, you need to have monitoring tools that support the cloud's elasticity by automatically including and excluding new and dropped server instances from the monitoring scope. The new generation of tools that are monitoring these environments need to be able to connect the virtualized perspective with actual configuration of all the involved layers, and, in an automated fashion, be able to assure that the cloud management loop is closed.