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OpTier Tackles APM Silos, Latency Issues

Application performance management (APM) is becoming a critical capability in today's world of cloud-based solutions and the applications-delivered-as-a-service technology model. Nevertheless, the market is crowded with dozens of vendors looking to bring APM to the cloud, with the likes of AppDynamics, AppFirst, Aternity, CA, Compuware, Correlsense, eG Innovations, HP, IBM, INETCO, Nastel, Netuitive, New Relic, OPNET, OpTier, Quest, SolarWinds and Splunk jostling for position with frequent updates to meet the management challenges of performance, cloud services and other elements in a cloud-based environment.

OpTier is striving to push its technology into the limelight by re-inventing its key APM product. Now at Version 4.5, OpTier Always-on APM is designed to work with transaction-based applications that are in continuous use, something that is becoming common in today's business environments. "Today's IT organizations are faced with ever-increasing complexity in both infrastructure and application design, yet are still held to the highest expectations for keeping the business running," says Jonah Kowall, research director at Gartner. "Products which address the needs of multiple buying groups increase the viability and versatility of the APM product once deployed in an enterprise."

OpTier, which has its roots in business transaction monitoring (BTM), has identified the primary shortcomings of current APM products and addressed them with Always-on APM 4.5. The company says traditional APM products have been designed to work as silo-focused diagnostic solutions, using synthetic monitoring to create actionable reporting. However, the very nature of synthetic monitoring introduces latency to situational awareness monitoring, where IT managers are basing current performance expectations on past performance events. That proves to be a liability when it comes to adequately guaranteeing performance levels and scaling up for transactional storms.

With the focus shifted to always-on application environments, OpTier has developed some significant enhancements for its APM product. Simply put, Version 4.5 focuses on making every user interaction count by delivering immediate user response and improving transactional performance across applications.

Key features include business process flow visualization across transactions; always-on application diagnostics for Java and .NET, which are designed to run in production and "always-on" with less than 2% overhead; and browser-based user activity, a new method using Java script injection to break down client response time and content delivery network (CDN) time, providing valuable insight into the impact of third-party content on the end users. Another feature is cloud-ready within the same product, providing visibility into cloud performance for transactions such as credit card/account validations and SOA services. And central access provides a federated approach for very large deployments, enabling faster problem resolution.

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