Today’s xkcd comic was one that I got a real kick out of. Picture John McLane as a sysadmin, and you get the picture. The unstoppable reluctant hero, the right guy in the right place at the wrong time. The relentless pursuit of availability and performance for the apps they support no matter the effort, that common thread amongst all great sysadmins worth their salt. But at what cost to the admin and those around them does this come? Well if they have subpar systems management software, at great cost. A good toolkit of monitoring/management software and a few point tools for some vendor specific use cases will allow our protagonist to go from being the burnt out, run down admin to becoming the Dicky Fox of IT and jump each morning head first into whatever the world (or the Datacenter) can throw at them. Systems Management software is to the sysadmin what spinach is to Popeye. It’s going to give them what they need when the going gets tough. With detailed drill down data and analytics traversing from Physical to Virtual environments and back becomes something that is done with ease.
I’m a big fan of tools, my workshop has far more than my wife thinks any sane person should require. There is a saying, “The right tool for the job”. You wouldn’t try and screw in a Philips head screw with a Robertson driver (The Robertson, BTW is the possibly best screw head ever. And a nice little Canadian invention. Licensing issues kept the world from reaping the benefits of this beauty). When picking the right tool for the job, you are balancing a few things. Cost and capabilities being key. You can buy a $30 screwdriver that only screws in one type of screw, or you can buy a set of screwdrivers for $30 and do all sorts of different screwing. I’ll tell you though that the $30 single driver will probably never strip and will be able to drive screws until you lose it. On the other hand, the $10 driver will probably do the trick as well, and provide you with a quality driver. Where am I going with this? The systems management space has all kinds of offerings that you can put into your toolbox. There are expensive tools that do one thing and do it flawlessly. There are cheap tools that can do a mountain of things, but they don’t excel at any one thing and you’ll end up outgrowing them as you become more proficient with your tools. Then there are the sweet spot tools, the Rigid’s of the software world. These tools that do exactly what you require, they do it well and you would be hard pressed to outgrow them. This is where I feel that up.time fits into the systems management software space. We’re not the cheap tool, but we’re not the overly expensive Tivoli or HPOV framework either. We fit into that sweet spot where you are going to get pretty well everything you could ask for and be happy with what it cost you.
So do your sysadmins a favour and thank them by letting them trial up.time. It will make their life easier and make the you, the IT manager, look like a hero as well with increased productivity and cost-savings. Even if you don’t go with a solution from us, when your sysadmins ask for tools, open your IT wallets for them at least a little. Some IT spinach will go a long way to keeping the strength in the arms of your Datacenter Popeyes!