How AppDynamics’ Diverse Partner Ecosystem Helps Power the Central Nervous System

January 23 2019

See how AppDynamics' diverse partner ecosystem helps action and automate IT tasks through incident response, event correlation, workload optimization, and communication facilitation.

Today, we announced the Cisco and AppDynamics AIOps strategy to deliver the “Central Nervous System” for IT operations, which is comprised of three core pillars:

  • Give customers broad visibility of their complex environments
  • Derive AI-based insights
  • Take Action on these insights to optimize IT environments and automate tasks to free up resources to drive new innovation

In this post, we’ll dive into the third pillar, Action, and explain four use cases for how AppDynamics integrates with strategic partners to action and automate IT tasks through incident response, event correlation, workload optimization, and communication facilitation.

Incident Response

Most incidents are a result of a change, and understanding and resolving the incident is the most critical part of operations – especially as we layer on levels of abstraction. However, the complexity of our systems is beyond what the human mind can possibly track or manage to understand the impact, making it extremely critical for IT teams to automate what they can to reduce the likelihood of human error.

To help IT teams get their apps back up and running as quickly as possible when incidents occur, AppDynamics integrates with typical workflows to manage incidents, problems, and changes including ServiceNow ITSM, Cherwell, BMC Remedy, and configuration management systems such as Evolven.

By combining AppDynamics’ granular visibility of applications with incident management capabilities, customers can triage user-impacting events before it impacts customers.

Event Correlation

Today’s IT teams are inundated with monitoring tools, according to a recent poll conducted at Gartner’s 2018 IT Infrastructure, Operations & Cloud Strategies Conference. Of the more than 200 respondents, 35% said they had over 30 monitoring tools – and this overload only seems to increase over time, with each tool generating alerts to find the right root cause of issues.

Event Management tools were created to help with this challenge by correlating and analyzing alerts from these disparate systems. AppDynamics integrates with the most commonly used Event Management systems, including ServiceNow Event Management and MoogSoft, which imports AppDynamics’ topological information (like flow maps and business transactions) to make more informed correlation decisions.

AppDynamics can also create events based on our machine learning baselines and anomaly detection. Paired with health rule violations, these provide more substantive alerts that show user experience degradation, which often leads to customer complaints.

Workload Optimization

Under every application, there are various layers of infrastructure, and many of these layers have additional layers constantly being added on top of them.

For example, in most enterprise data centers, we have physical servers with a virtualization layer on top, and more commonly, we are seeing a private cloud or orchestrated containers being implemented on top of them. These systems allow for easier deployment, scalability, and management – but it also comes at a cost as the complexity makes it difficult to ensure the technologies are delivering the right business outcomes.

To help address this challenge, the AppDynamics platform integrates with and monitors technologies such as Pivotal Cloud Foundry, RedHat OpenShift, and the open source Kubernetes platform. Many of these systems can also take telemetry in the form of metrics and events from AppDynamics to make better decisions on how to scale, when to scale, and what the results are. Additionally, AppDynamics integrates with Turbonomic’s platform to help customers optimize and orchestrate workloads on virtualized servers, private clouds, and public cloud environments.

As organizations continue to invest heavily in the cloud, workload optimization is more critical than ever. According to a Forrester Consulting survey with over 700 respondents, 86% said their organization has a multi-cloud strategy and almost half of Enterprises report at least $50 million in annual cloud spending. These statistics make one thing clear: Multi-cloud or hybrid management is not an option, but a requirement.

Facilitate Communication

Many organizations are implementing new ways to move code to production faster through the use of open source systems such as Spinnaker or Jenkins, or more advanced commercial offerings such as Microsoft TFS, Gitlab, CircleCI, or Harness. AppDynamics has integrations with these products to automatically tag and track when code is pushed to systems.

However, as teams accelerate their deployments, this can often result in overlooking processes which ensure additional checks, like a handoff for testing and verification. In fact, in the 12th annual State of Agile Survey, while the use of continuous deployment increased from 35% in 2017 to 37% in 2018, continuous integration dropped from 61% to 54%.

As a result, this lack of integration can lead to high business risk. To avoid this, teams must improve the way they communicate, coordinate, and execute on any issues. Since each organization has different structures with varying roles and expertise, matching up the right experts to resolve the incident is often a requirement.

With the Central Nervous System, we integrate into solutions such as PagerDuty, xMatters, and OpsGenie to help facilitate communication and ensure the coordination of subject matter experts or owners. Ownership and accountability are key elements when going through cultural change and implementing one of the most important of the 3 ways of DevOps, feedback, and collaboration.

Thank you, Partners!

AppDynamics is so proud to work with such an amazing breadth of partners who can helps us optimize the IT environment by using orchestration and automation systems to do intelligent workload placement, cloud cost optimization, incident response, or even security enforcement.
And as we continue to innovate on our offerings and solutions for our customers, I can’t wait see what other partners will join the AppDynamics partner ecosystem.

Jonah Kowall
Jonah Kowall is the Vice President of market development and insights, helping drive the company’s product roadmap and vision, while developing entry into new markets and providing valuable technology and business insights to fuel the accelerating and broad-based demand for the company’s Application Intelligence Platform. Jonah comes to AppDynamics with a diverse background including 15 years as an IT practitioner at several startups and larger enterprises focused on infrastructure and operations, security, and performance engineering. These included running tactical and strategic operational initiatives, going deep into monitoring of infrastructure and application components. In 2011 Jonah changed careers, moving to Gartner to focus on availability and performance monitoring and IT operations management (ITOM). Jonah led Gartner's influential application performance monitoring (APM) and network performance monitoring and diagnostics (NPMD) magic quadrants and research as a research vice president.

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