Real-Time Monitoring Metrics - The Magical Mundane
September 12, 2012

Larry Dragich
Technology Executive

Share this

Application Performance Management (APM) has many benefits when implemented with the right support structure and sponsorship. It's the key for managing action, going red to green, and trending on performance.

As you strive to achieve new levels of sophistication when creating performance baselines, it is important to consider how you will navigate the oscillating winds of application behavior as the numbers come in from all directions. The behavioral context of the user will highlight key threshold settings to consider as you build a framework for real-time alerting into your APM solution.

This will take an understanding of the application and an analysis of the numbers as you begin looking at user patterns. Metrics play a key role in providing this value through different views across multiple comparisons. Absent from any behavioral learning engines which are now emerging in the APM space, you can begin a high level analysis on your own to come to a common understanding of each business application's performance.

Just as water seeks its own level, an application performance baseline will eventually emerge as you track the real-time performance metrics outlining the high and low watermarks of the application. This will include the occasional anomalous wave that comes crashing through affecting the user experience as the numbers fluctuate.


Depending on transaction volume and performance characteristics there will be a certain level of noise that you will need to squelch to a volume level that can be analyzed. When crunching the numbers and distilling patterns, it will be essential to create three baseline comparisons that you will use like a compass for navigation into what is real and what is an exception.

Real-Time vs. Yesterday

As the real-time performance metrics come in, it is important to watch the application performance at least at the five minute interval as compared to the day before to see if there are any obvious changes in performance.

Real-Time vs. 7 days Ago

Comparing Monday to Sunday may not be relevant if your core business hours are M-F; using the real-time view and comparing it to the same day as the previous week will be more useful - especially if a new release of the application was rolled out over the weekend and you want to know how it compares with the previous week.

Real-Time vs. 10 Day Rolling Average

Using a 10, 15 or 30 day rolling average is helpful in reviewing overall application performance with the business, because everyone can easily understand averages and what they mean when compared against a real-time view.

Capturing real-time performance metrics in five minute intervals is a good place to start. Once you get a better understanding of the application behavior you may increase or decrease the interval as needed. For real-time performance alerting, using the averages will give you a good picture when something is out of pattern, and to report on Service Level Management using percentiles (90%, 95%, etc.), will help create and accurate view for the business. To make it simple to remember, alert on the averages and profile with percentiles.

Conclusion

Operationally there are things you may not want to think about all of the time (e.g. standard deviations, averages, percentiles, etc.), but you have to think about them long enough to create the most accurate picture possible as you begin to distill performance patterns with each business application. This can be accomplished by building meaningful performance baselines that will help feed your Service Level Management processes well into the future.

You can contact Larry on LinkedIn.

Related Links:

For more information on the critical success factors in APM adoption and how this centers around the End-User-Experience (EUE), read The Anatomy of APM and the corresponding blog APM’s DNA – Event to Incident Flow.

Prioritizing Gartner's APM Model

Event Management: Reactive, Proactive, or Predictive?

APM and MoM – Symbiotic Solution Sets

Larry Dragich is a Technology Executive and Founder of the APM Strategies Group on LinkedIn
Share this

The Latest

December 11, 2019

As the New Year approaches, it is time for APMdigest's 10th annual list of Application Performance Management (APM) predictions. Industry experts offer thoughtful, insightful, and often controversial predictions on how APM and related technologies will evolve and impact business in 2020 ...

December 10, 2019

Enterprises with services operating in the cloud are overspending by millions due to inefficiencies with their apps and runtime environments, according to a poll conducted by Lead to Market, and commissioned by Opsani. 69 Percent of respondents report regularly overspending on their cloud budget by 25 percent or more, leading to a loss of millions on unnecessary cloud spend ...

December 09, 2019

For IT professionals responsible for upgrading users to Windows 10, it's crunch time. End of regular support for Windows 7 is nearly here (January 14, 2020) but as many as 59% say that only a portion of their users have been migrated to Windows 10 ...

December 05, 2019

Application performance monitoring (APM) has become one of the key strategies adopted by IT teams and application owners in today’s era of digital business services. Application downtime has always been considered adverse to business productivity. But in today’s digital economy, what is becoming equally dreadful is application slowdown. When an application is slow, the end user’s experience accessing the application is negatively affected leaving a dent on the business in terms of commercial loss and brand damage ...

December 04, 2019

Useful digital transformation means altering or designing new business processes, and implementing them via the people and technology changes needed to support these new business processes ...

December 03, 2019
The word "digital" is today thrown around in word and phrase like rice at a wedding and never do two utterances thereof have the same meaning. Common phrases like "digital skills" and "digital transformation" are explained in 101 different ways. The outcome of this is a predictable cycle of confusion, especially at business management level where often the answer to business issues is "more technology" ...
December 02, 2019

xMatters recently released the results of its Incident Management in the Age of Customer-Centricity research study to better understand the range of various incident management practices and how the increased focus on customer experience has caused roles across an organization to evolve. Findings highlight the ongoing challenges organizations face as they continue to introduce and rapidly evolve digital services ...

November 26, 2019

The new App Attention Index Report from AppDynamics finds that consumers are using an average 32 digital services every day — more than four times as many as they realize. What's more, their use of digital services has evolved from a conscious decision to carry around a device and use it for a specific task, to an unconscious and automated behavior — a digital reflex. So what does all this mean for the IT teams driving application performance on the backend? Bottom line: delivering seamless and world-class digital experiences is critical if businesses want to stay relevant and ensure long-term customer loyalty. Here are some key considerations for IT leaders and developers to consider ...

November 25, 2019

Through the adoption of agile technologies, financial firms can begin to use software to both operate more effectively and be faster to market with improvements for customer experiences. Making sure there is the necessary software in place to give customers frictionless everyday activities, like remote deposits, business overdraft services and wealth management, is key for a positive customer experience ...

November 21, 2019

For the past two years, Couchbase has been digging into enterprises' digital strategies. Can they deliver the experiences and services their end-users need? What pressure are they under to innovate and succeed? And what is driving investments in new technologies? ...