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Defining the importance of application performance management

Increases in network complexity can cause network health to suffer, but network-based application performance management offers admins better visibility to improve performance.

Why is application performance management so important to network health?

Poor application performance directly affects the business, negatively impacting the company brand or resulting in lost revenues when customers cannot complete transactions or abandon the process in frustration. IT Operations teams are often held accountable for application performance and are responsible for determining the root cause of performance degradations. However, gaining this visibility is more difficult than ever as IT environments become more complex and dynamic.

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A confluence of factors contribute to increasing IT complexity and dynamism. Previously, IT environments were fairly static, and every piece of the IT infrastructure would be registered and accounted for in the configuration management database (CMDB). Today, virtual machines spin up and spin down and travel across the data center as part of vMotion. Agile development practices bring frequent, iterative application changes that can interfere with older performance monitoring techniques. Application infrastructure is more distributed and modular, handling more data travelling at faster speeds. Finally, the consumerization of IT and the trend toward mobility mean that IT organizations have much less control over the devices and operating systems that employees use. Fortunately, all of the health and performance information for modern applications is on the wire.

Since the various application components communicate with one another over the network, a network-based approach to application performance management can provide IT departments with the visibility they need to prevent or quickly remediate performance problems before they affect the business.

This was first published in March 2012
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