One Man (or Message) Can Make a Difference

Wire data provides the benefits of being obtained passively, without overhead, in real-time, with the granularity to understand not just elements of infrastructure performance, but those of individual application calls, database queries, server responsiveness, and, potentially, glue together the components of a service to form a complete end-to-end picture.

One Man (or Message) Can Make a DifferenceBy David Murray    30 March 2016      Product

Wire Data Analytics Implicit in Gartner’s View of the Future of Business Transaction Performance and Visibility.

“One man (or message) can make a difference.”

Reminiscent of the premise of the 1980s television series, Knight Rider, in which David Hasselhoff partnered with an artificially intelligent, computerized Trans Am to fight the world’s evils, this motto is also one of the realizations from Gartner’s recent research of the critical and increasing importance of “wire data” in performance and availability management in the future. By its nature, wire data can be a source for visibility to all messages and communications that, in their entity, deliver a service or complete a transaction.

Gartner’s research indicates that a data-centric approach is required for the future and log data, API data, and wire data “will all prove important to the future of availability and performance management. Wire data will, however, play a key role – and often a primary role.”

In Gartner’s view, the changing face of technology will drive this shift. Newer applications and technology are:

  • Modular: Made of parts that change without regard for how parts changes
  • Dynamic: Increasing rate of change of individual components, changing the relationships between elements
  • Distributed: Elements are spread across various locations
  • Mobile: Can move to other locations
  • Hybridized between on-premises and cloud: Elements may be managed by multiple providers

Most monitoring approaches look at one or more components of a system based on a sampling of information, potentially aggregated or realized in arrears. These traditional approaches to monitoring need to be rethought since new environments, by their nature, are dynamic, and the rate of change of their individual elements and the impact of one element on others in the system is increasing. It is only through understanding the data about the elements and, perhaps more importantly, how they interact, that one can evaluate the most critical measure of performance – the user experience.

Wire data provides the benefits of being obtained passively, without overhead, in real-time, with the granularity to understand not just elements of infrastructure performance, but those of individual application calls, database queries, server responsiveness, and, potentially, glue together the components of a service to form a complete end-to-end picture.

Today’s business transactions, the combination of multiple applications, services, and infrastructure, are increasingly organic, such that no two are identical and they are always evolving. They have become like snowflakes. End users access systems from different locations/devices/access mechanisms. Load balancers, firewalls, and other infrastructure may direct users through different paths. Application code and deployment mechanisms are more agile and one user may see something different from another. Applications may be divided into multiple, single purpose containers or virtual instances. Some of the applications and infrastructure for a given transaction may be managed in an enterprise’s data center while others executed in a shared or private cloud environment managed elsewhere.And, workload or data may orchestrated from one system to another or failed over to an entirely different infrastructure.

Accordingly, a sampling of information at one point of time may provide little insight into the state of a component or the system as a whole in the near future. Put another way, past performance does not guarantee future results.

The common thread of these transactions is how the user experiences the complete service AND how that experience correlates to business outcomes. This requires an active, always-on view of every transaction – and an ability to see those transactions without compromising the performance of the transactions being monitored – and use of not just technology transaction-based data, but the content and context of those transactions.

As a digital business or service owner, one must ask himself or herself, does EVERY interaction matter?

With the consumerization of IT, there is a new service level expectation for every user interaction. Similarly, with companies targeting individual consumers through advanced analytics (“demographics of one”), there is an expectation that every potential customer, every business transaction counts. To gain visibility and understanding of each interaction only an active view of the communications associated with each of those transactions will suffice. This is especially true given that each may be unique in not only the consumer, but in the complex path through which the consumer is serviced.

Today’s digital business leaders and IT service or application owners are faced with a need for more transparency to the organic operation of their services. While the lens of any single data source makes this hard to see, as Gartner begins foreshadowing, wire data is not only implicit in application and infrastructure performance and availability management, it is a cornerstone on which to build the practice of Business Transaction Performance Management.

It begins with the realization that one unique message, one transaction, one consumer interaction CAN and MUST make a difference. It does to the customer. It does for compliance purposes. And I suspect that it would to a talking car.

*Use Data – and Analytics-Centric Processes With a Focus on Wire Data to Future-Proof Availability and Performance Management (10 March 2016)

Gartner, Inc., Use Data- and Analytics-Centric Processes With a Focus on Wire Data to Future-Proof Availability and Performance Management, Will Cappelli, Vivek Bhalla, 10 March 2016.

One Man (or Message) Can Make a Difference

David Murray, Chief Business Development Officer, Corvil
Corvil safeguards business in a machine world. We see a future where all businesses trust digital machines to algorithmically conduct transactions on their behalf. For some businesses, this future is now.
@corvilinc