The up.time IT Systems Management Blog

9Apr. 2014

IT Monitoring with up.time 7.3 – What’s New?

This is the first in a three-part series on our latest IT monitoring release, “uptime 7.3.” This three part series will cover 1. What’s New?  2. How to Easily Extend up.time  3. More Updated Features. So sit back, and enjoy part one…

IT monitoring with up.time 7.3

up.time 7.3

We’re excited to continue making up.time the best (and easiest to use) unified enterprise IT dashboard for complete visibility and control of performance, availability, and capacity. up.time provides comprehensive, proactive, and flexible monitoring, alerting, and reporting for all physical servers, virtual machines, network devices, applications and services.

So… What’s New?

  • Seamless. Seamless Plugin and Gadget Management with Extension Manager.
  • Tighter. Tighter Integration with new Element Management (via API).
  • Deeper. Trigger deeper alerting and self-healing options on vital VM-level metrics.

Highlights of up.time 7.3′s Updated Features:

  • Unlimited File System Capacity Service Checking.
  • More Ways to Customize Alert and Script Variables.
  • Easy to Add Service Monitors.

Download an up.time 7.3 trial to try it for yourself and see how up.time can add value to your current IT monitoring.  Or to learn more, please sign up for a weekly webinar here.

Make sure to stay tuned for the next blog in the series by subscribing to our blog.

7Apr. 2014

Amazon EC2 Monitoring – Part 2: Infrastructure and Applications

This is the second in a two-part series on “Amazon EC2 Monitoring.” View Part One blog post of this series.

Amazon EC2 - The “Server Uptime” Report

Amazon EC2 – The “Server Uptime” Report

Can you easily see the uptime of individual servers, groups, or the entire EC2 infrastructure with the click of a button? Or compare Amazon EC2 uptime to on-premise uptime? Are you getting the cost savings and uptime you require from your EC2 deployment? Without these critical reports, IT is flying blind with their EC2 deployment.

IT needs to ensure their EC2 instances are running and performing within range, similarly to how they view the rest of their on-premise infrastructure and applications. It’s not important where the infrastructure or applications reside (in the cloud or in the datacenter), but it’s crucial that IT can proactively and reactively find and fix issues quickly. With up.time’s EC2 monitoring, managers and administrators can:

  1. View, monitor, alert, and report on performance, availability, and capacity across all servers, applications, network devices, and services from the same IT dashboard, regardless of the environment (Physical, Virtual, or Cloud).
  2. Get the deep metrics they require to expertly monitor their EC2 environment.

Amazon EC2 monitoring with up.time allows enterprises to utilize a unified dashboard to view availability, performance, and capacity of all cloud infrastructure from the same interface as their physical, virtual, and network infrastructure.

Download 1-pager: EC2 Monitoring

Download the Free Amazon EC2 Monitoring Plugin

Make sure to stay tuned for the next blog in the series by subscribing to our blog.

31Mar. 2014

Amazon EC2 Monitoring: Infrastructure and Applications

Amazon EC2 Monitoring

Amazon EC2 Monitoring

This is the first in a two-part series on “Amazon EC2 Monitoring “.

Five years ago, Enterprises reaped the benefits of reducing infrastructure and maintenance costs by moving from physical to virtual servers.  Today, the next evolution is taking place – the move into the cloud.

Cloud providers are enabling IT departments to offload infrastructure and maintenance, resulting in cost reduction. However, monitoring, alerting, and reporting in this new environment is proving complex and challenging.

Amazon’s (the leading cloud provider) EC2 CloudWatch interface and API provides simple metrics, such as CPU utilization, disk read/writes, and network in/out. However, this simple CloudWatch monitoring has two critical drawbacks that hurt EC2 customers.

  1. No unified monitoring or consolidated reporting for performance, availability, and capacity across cloud and on-premise servers, applications, and IT services.
  2. Lack of the deep metrics that IT requires, including detailed OS, process, and application monitoring data.

With the uptime’s Amazon EC2 Monitoring solution, you will see a large performance and cost benefits from unified monitoring.  Unified monitoring provides a single view and deeper insight, which means more time being productive and less time configuring, maintaining, and logging in and out of separate monitoring tools.

Download 1-pager: EC2 Monitoring

Download Plugin

Make sure to stay tuned for the next blog in the series by subscribing to our blog.

21Mar. 2014

Why being a frenemy is good for your business

It’s nice to make new friends but sometimes making enemies isn’t all that bad.  Let me explain…

Two of the things I like best about my role at uptime are talking to clients and seeing clients fully leverage the breadth of capabilities up.time offers.  I have  SLA Dashboardhad a series of calls over the last several weeks with Brad, an IT Manager at a Fortune 500 company in the retail sector.  I like Brad – he’s an IT guy but has great business sense so I enjoy being able to talk with him about how our software helps to directly support his business and add real value to his operation.  Brad is responsible for the mission critical infrastructure and applications that support a staggering amount of online business so his cost of downtime is way up in the financial stratosphere.

We have been working with Brad’s team to set up SLA monitoring for each of his company’s main online brands, which has started to make visible some interesting optimization opportunities at an operational level.  Brad said that he loves our SLA dashboard but he may have some unhappy people on his team when he shows them some of the areas up.time has identified.  So I couldn’t resist…

I asked Brad if he had seen the Uptime and Hot Spot reports that we added to the up.time 7.2 release.  He hadn’t so as I walked him through the intent of the reports and the available data, I could just about hear his smile over the phone as he said, oh boy, is my team going to hate you!

We built these reports (and others such as the Incident Priority Quadrant) for guys like Brad who manage large, complex IT environments and need help identifying where they have problems and more importantly, where they should focus their resources to most effectively optimize infrastructure performance.

So I apologize to anyone on Brad’s team who may have some unexpected extra short term work.  Hate me now if you must but I know you’ll thank me later when you see the results and all the green on your up.time dashboards!

14Feb. 2014

Unified IT Monitoring – Reason #1 of why SysAdmins ♥ up.time

Unified IT MonitoringHappy Valentine’s Day! We hope you enjoyed our series “The Reasons Why SysAdmins Love up.time.” As our technological environment changes everyday, so do our IT infrastructures. Nowadays, System Administrators must manage a complex heterogeneous IT environment. That’s why our #1 reason why SysAdmins love up.time is our unified IT monitoring and reporting, which provides high-level views and deep-dive capabilities into availability, performance, and capacity across all servers (physical, virtual and cloud), network devices, applications, and services.

Reason #1: One Unified IT Dashboard for Enterprise IT Environments.

SysAdmins love a unified and customizable dashboard view of their complex and multi-platform environment. A view that includes comprehensive server monitoring, application monitoring, network monitoring, capacity planning, and SLA management. SysAdmins also love up.time’s user-friendly customizable GUI, with easy drag and drop dashboard design and many options. This allows users to create private IT dashboards, team dashboards, and/or an NOC for the entire datacenter. Unified IT monitoring is essential to proactively highlight issues before they become serious, while helping IT react fast when incidents do happen.

If you are interested in learning more about up.time’s Unified IT Dashboard capabilities, please…

 

 

13Feb. 2014

Capacity Management – Reason #2 of why SysAdmins ♥ up.time

IT Maturity CurveOptimizing capacity management and capacity planning is definitely something you’ll want to consider if you’re trying to move your organization up the IT Maturity Curve. Much has been said about this topic and it’s something that we think is uber important here at uptime software, (read more about capacity here, What Everybody Ought to Know About Capacity, Is Capacity Meeting Business Demand, and Building a Better Capacity Planning Process ). Both Systems Administrators and IT Managers love the benefits that Capacity Management delivers, including cost savings, reliability, efficiency of IT services, and accurate reporting & forecasting, just to name a few. This is why capacity management ranks high, as the #2 reason why SysAdmins love using up.time.

Reason #2: Better Capacity Management Saves Money, Reduces Downtime, and Ends Headaches

Capacity planning is all about having the correct amount of capacity optimized for your IT environment needs. However, many enterprises still unknowingly overspend on capacity Capacity Managementwhen they don’t need to! Fortunately, up.time helps SysAdmins monitor, report, and aggregate capacity across one or multiple platforms, in one or many datacenters. With up.time, IT can quickly answer the big three capacity questions

  1. How much capacity do we have (locally or globally, per platform or across all platforms, physically or virtually or both)?
  2. How much capacity are we currently using?
  3. When will we run out of capacity.

If that’s not enough, up.time makes life easier by helping SysAdmins automate capacity allocation using proactive features that dynamically add or remove server capacity in virtual environments. up.time’s automation can spin up virtual instances to meet heavy demand instantly, and then decommission that capacity when the demand passes, ensuring there’s no wasted capacity or VM sprawl left to deal with.

To visit all the reasons why SysAdmins love up.time, click here »

12Feb. 2014

The Incident Priority Report – Reason #3 of why SysAdmins ♥ up.time

Incident Priority ReportOne of the most important things to consider in IT Systems Management is; Where and on what are you (and your team) spending valuable IT time? How can you ensure that you’re always working on the highest priority IT problems? Well, that’s all answered in Reason #3…

Reason #3: up.time can make you an IT Superstar

Systems Administrators love the up.time Incident Priority Report for its ability to quickly improve IT service delivery (and IT productivity) by identifying common break points across servers, networks, applications, and services.

This up.time report quickly identifies the true “troublemakers” in your IT infrastructure and application stack with a bird’s-eye view of the servers, devices, services, and applications that cause the majority of incidents or accumulate excessive downtime. It’s a great report for helping set IT priorities and becoming more proactive.

Showing Off the IT Superstar Team

This report doubles as a great way to communicate the progress that IT makes over time. Simply run this report monthly or quarterly to show concrete proof of how IT is decreasing downtime and making end-user services more available.

 

 

11Feb. 2014

Proactive Application Monitoring – Reason #4 of why SysAdmins ♥ up.time

Application MonitoringIn anticipation for Valentine’s Day, we’re having fun with counting down the reasons why System Administrators  ♥ up.time. Here is reason #4 why SysAdmins choose up.time for monitoring and reporting on IT health…

Reason #4: Proactive application monitoring and delivery.

SysAdmins love that they can use up.time to proactively identify, isolate, and resolve application performance and server problems before end-users start calling the help desk. Moreover, up.time’s application monitoring ensures that your user experience isn’t degrading. Whether you’re monitoring the shopping cart for an online retailer, or the CRM for your sales team, you’ll be alerted the minute application performance problems start!

To read the all the reasons why SysAdmins  ♥ up.time, click here »

10Feb. 2014

SLA Management – Reason #5 of why SysAdmins ♥ up.time

SLA ManagementAs Valentine’s Day draws near, it’s the perfect time to share why SysAdmins ♥ up.time. If you follow us on twitter, you may have noticed that we started our “Top 10″ countdown last week. This week, we’ll share the top 5 reasons why SysAdmins ♥ up.time, up until Valentine’s Day.

Reason #5: You can prove how valuable IT is with SLA Management.

At uptime, we think that comprehensive IT SLA management is essential for showing IT value to stakeholders. SLA management will provide clear visibility, status, and trends that help ensure SLA targets are consistently met. up.time can help you set up IT SLAs in minutes, not months, even for complex enterprise-level organizations. Also, did you know that up.time is one of the only products that maps SLAs down to the infrastructure level? This is priceless for SLA reporting and SLA trouble shooting. up.time also has snap-in integration with other IT and business tools (Help Desk, CMDB, BI tools, etc.).

Discover all 10 reasons why Sysadmins ♥ up.time below.

22Jan. 2014

Proving IT’s Value to the Business with SLA Management

IT SLA Monitoring and ReportingService Level Agreements (SLAs) are now the key factor in translating IT effectiveness into measurable business value. In order for organizations to remain a vital and respected contributor to business value, IT managers must aggressively monitor and report on service levels. Specifically, SLAs define appropriate levels of stability, reliability, and performance for IT infrastructure and applications, as well as identify potential performance issues to minimize risks.

SLA Management revolves around ensuring service levels and quality are appropriately governed (and met) using a set of key performance indicators. The emergence of SLA management has created a demand for new tools and solutions that enable IT to monitor and report on results that are relevant to the business units. However, IT organizations can undermine their credibility in the eyes of the business by executing service level management (SLM) poorly, as SLM will naturally increase IT  transparency; creating disappointment if those agreements are not met.

First Steps toward SLM.

IT organizations starting out in SLM are encouraged by industry experts to monitor current service levels and establish a baseline of service quality. This enables companies to gauge whether they can meet the expectations of the business units with existing resources, or if they will need to make additional IT investments to achieve the desired levels of service.

To begin, it’s necessary to define the key metrics to manage. Metrics can include areas like service delivery (the time it takes to respond to a service request) and service availability (can a particular business transaction be completed in less than 3 seconds?).

To learn more about Service Level Agreement management (SLA), download the white paper The “SLA Way” to IT Success – Help IT Build Confidence and Credibility.


For additional information on SLAs and SLM:

Webinars: Mastering IT SLA Management, Creating IT SLAs: Know How and Where to Start

Videos: Setting IT SLAs and Service Level Objectives