The Cisco AppDynamics On-Premises Virtual Appliance: A modern observability platform with AI-driven insights

May 14 2024

A cutting-edge solution that fortifies defenses against security threats, ensures robust performance of SAP® applications and business processes, and empowers teams with a proactive approach to maintaining system integrity and operational excellence.

Cisco AppDynamics On-Premises Virtual Appliance represents the pinnacle of modern observability, providing IT Operations teams with AI-powered capabilities for rapid and precise anomaly detection and root cause analysis. This cutting-edge solution fortifies defenses against security threats, ensures robust performance of SAP® applications and business processes, and empowers teams with a proactive approach to maintaining system integrity and operational excellence.

Fulfilling the commitment to modernize our self-hosted solution

Investing in modernizing our on-premises application performance monitoring (APM) solution, with the services you need, is paramount to your success. Over the past year, we hardened the platform with efficient performance improvements and fortified security. With this release, we continue to make our on-premises solution even more robust and streamlined by introducing new functionality that solves real-world problems.

Modern AI and security services have been implemented leveraging the industry advantages found with Kubernetes®, MicroK8s to be exact. Now, to support these modern distributed services, modern infrastructure is leveraged.

We did the research and understood your need to have a quick and efficient way to deploy modern services at scale without the worry of having to maintain compatibility between those various services – this means game-changing productivity across the board. We packed everything as a single OVA package to be deployed as a virtual appliance, to make it simple and efficient from deployment to lifecycle management.

The easiest way to gain immediate value from AI-powered anomaly detection and root cause analysis, and address business risk with application security vulnerability and threat detection insights, is with microservices.

Engineered for efficiency, the virtual appliance encapsulates everything needed to run self-hosted services that:

  • Simplifies deployment
  • Reduces compatibility challenges
  • Offers consistency across different computing environments
  • Provides access to modern services

AppDynamics virtual appliance delivers benefits

The virtual appliance provides faster time to value for supporting modern services and improves full-stack observability. Being MicroK8s means it’s much simpler than a standard Kubernetes deployment. There is nothing you need to worry about other than hosting the virtual machines hosting it, which enables your effort to be focused on gaining value from the services provided.

Why did we choose to build a MicroK8s virtual appliance, packaged neatly as an OVA, and what challenges does it address? 

Public sector and government regulations, data privacy, and corporate espionage are among some of the concerns requiring self-hosted services. However, there is also a growing need for modern services and deployment options that provide an efficient, yet robust, full-stack observability solution.

Our new, pre-configured virtual machine OVA image contains an operating system with software applications designed to bootstrap AppDynamics self-hosted services faster than a traditional AppDynamics on-premises deployment.

We tackled these challenges:

  • Enhanced the onboarding experience: Implementing comprehensive deployment strategies that ensure all services function cohesively.
  • Seamlessly integrated with current systems: Enabling straightforward integration with existing deployments, eliminating the necessity for disruptive replacements.
  • Simplified upgrade processes: Streamlining upgrades across multiple services to minimize complexity and ensure a smooth transition.
  • Provided entry to modern services: Providing access to cutting-edge capabilities, including AI-driven analytics and business risk observability.

This packaged software solution bundle can be provisioned on a virtualization platform such as VMware using vSphere. Other form factors are coming such as KVM, VHD, and AMI. By being packaged as a virtual appliance, it allows you to quickly set up and deploy AppDynamics self-hosted services without the need for extensive configuration.

This means streamlined deployments with less complexity!

Our foundation-up strategy approach

The modern packaging of AppDynamics’ self-hosted solution reflects our massive investment in revolutionizing the on-premises backend. Multiple components must work seamlessly together: the Controller, Events Service, Enterprise Console, Synthetic Server, and more. This solution simplifies and reduces concerns for maintaining compatibility between the various components.

Not just the packaging, AppDynamics also modernized services and capabilities. We listened to your need for AI-powered anomaly detection and root cause analysis to zero in on the issue as quickly as possible. We believe in the need to reduce business risk by being able to quickly identify application security vulnerabilities and threats — and remediate them based on business priorities.

We solved problems around packaging, deployment, and operations and support infrastructure and tech stacks that host modern services, so your deployment gets the best ROI.

Enhancing the user experience with our virtual appliance selection strategy

We designed a virtual appliance to elevate the onboarding experience. It enables straightforward installation, adoption, and maintenance, while significantly lowering the threshold for accessing sophisticated, modern services. Whether deploying for the first time or as an established on-premises user, there’s no need for disruptive overhauls of existing setups. Most importantly, our strategy empowers users to maximize their investment and realize value quicker from adoption of modern services like anomaly detection, root cause analysis, and advanced security insights for applications.

For more information, please contact us, visit the documentation, and join the webinar.

Ajay Agarwal is a seasoned Senior Technical Product Manager at Cisco AppDynamics, with over a decade of experience thriving at the intersection of technology, design, and business strategy. Having worked with Microsoft and Amazon in highly technical customer-facing roles, Ajay brings a passion for understanding user needs and marketing dynamics as well as articulating the role of Cisco AppDynamics in helping customers overcome their most pressing business challenges and pain points.

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