September 22, 2017 | Dave Poulton
Dave Poulton

Dave is the CTO of Intergence and has over 30 years of experience in telecoms and IT network services. Dave has held senior level positions for a number of leading companies such as Cable & Wireless, Vodafone, Credit Suisse and Barclays. He has extensive experience in network design, IT service solution design, OSS management systems, analytics, managed services and large global transformation projects.

In the world of IT and technology this week we have certainly had some step-change announcements, especially from Apple with the new iPhone 8 and iPhone X (10). I also had a meaningful conversation with a group of IT professionals about monitoring systems and how the recent Gartner announcement that the BIG-4 ITOM BSM tools were dead! The recommendation now is to use other ITOM tooling to convey value in managing your operation. ‘Interesting' I said as it’s something I have known for years.

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In the modern approach to open architecture, we have witnessed a giant leap in technology with the introduction of virtualisation, software defined networking, containerisation, voice and video applications, and more recently, the introduction of microservices where the days of monolithic applications are about to change. Today is about digital transformation, cloud-first strategies, and being agile and lean in the development lifecycles of new-age applications to maintain a competitive market-sector edge in staying ahead of your competition. IT operational tooling is not taken seriously enough in a lot of organisations and tends to be deployed within silo's where the team is responsible for an element within the digital delivery supply chain.

Monitoring-the-Unmanageable-1.png Everyone talks about having end-to-end visibility  and analytical insights into the performance and  experience of their services, but in reality, it’s a  collection of siloed teams doing their bit to    maintain service availability and performance. 

'Well it works well for us' I hear you say…

  Maybe it does, but things are about to get tough.  The take up of containerisation, microservice  applications, software defined networks, and  server-less ephemeral systems spinning up and  down to perform specific tasks for more efficient use of compute resource is going to become a monitoring nightmare. Why?...

There is a recent Gartner announcement that predicts unprecedented growth within the IT environment through the deployment of containerisation alone! The figures are startling - in 2015 the average number of containers per account was 96, in 2016 it’s 280. In 2015 the average number of containers per company was 1,596, in 2016, it's up to a whopping 135,630! So you see the monitoring environment is now becoming unmanageable. A time for strategy and change in what tooling and how tooling is used and deployed is required. Automation and recording of the end-to-end application operation are needed to be able to obtain the necessary analytical insights of the service performance, experience and security. Having a capability of being able to playback application transaction and network data will be crucial to maintaining accurate visibility and future compliance. 

monitoring microservices

If you would like to understand more about this subject or would welcome further discussions, then please contact me dpoulton@intergence.com.  We aim to start discussion forums and meet-up's to debate the issues, solutions, tooling and framework approaches needed in moving away from legacy tooling and silo’s of operation, to a one-view real-time operational capability.