A bank is being robbed, and the panicked customers hit the ground and look hopefully to the security person on duty. He announces that he is not a security ‘guard’ but rather a security ‘monitor’. He proceeds to weakly announce to everyone that they are being robbed. This is one example in a clever series of commercials by #lifelock, who proclaim “Why monitor a problem if you don’t fix it?”
Being a technology guy, I remembered back to the 1990’s when I worked for Boole & Babbage and #bmc. Our products evolved from ‘monitoring’ system problems through reporting, to ‘managing’ the problems by providing systems managers ways to fix the problem, and finally to ‘automating’ problems by enabling automated actions based on predefined rules.
When it comes to application performance these days, it seems every major software vendor offers solutions that try to improve performance of applications from a myriad of angles. These include vendors from unrelated backgrounds including systems management, database monitoring, application instrumentation, network monitoring, and web performance monitoring. While these products are helpful, what is really needed is a solution to fix the problem, not just measure and report. After all, end users experiencing slow response times with web applications are like the bank customers on the ground — they sort of already know they have a problem.
I recently came across a cool company that is offering a novel approach. They don’t report on app problems — they just fix them. #nitrosphere has an impressive list of customers that are deferring either expensive network bandwidth upgrades or investing in costly WAN Accelerators, by using NitroAccelerator, a software solution not requiring an appliance. With no configuration required and an easy installation on the endpoints with the performance issues, NitroAccelerator speeds performance on SQL server connections using techniques such as adaptive packet compression to dynamically adjust TCP packet size based on the data, caching of data locally on the endpoint, and other proprietary techniques that minimize data transfer between endpoints. Additionally, network traffic between endpoints is secured through encryption.
The company offers a free 15 day trial so users can see the results for themselves in their own network, which sounds like a no-brainer to me given the costly and time consuming alternatives. Your end users already know they have problems — #justfixit!