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APM Rolling Review: App Monitoring Made Really Easy

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The Upshot

Indicative Software says its Service Director suite, which was developed from the ground up with a service-centric business view, can reduce the complexity of managing intricate application environments. The software is expensive, but Indicative says easy deployment means a return may be realized in days, not months. The company also touts ease of maintenance.
Unlike competing configuration suites, such as those from HP/Mercury, IBM and CA/Wily, Indicative provides a single software package to manage all elements of the application environment. While many vendors now offer agentless synthetic transaction monitoring along with agent technology and real-time user monitoring, usually you need to buy multiple products for complex application environments. Indicative takes a welcome streamlined approach.
We found Service Director incredibly easy to install, configure and maintain. If you need an agentless synthetic transaction product with the ability to leverage existing external data, Indicative should be on your shortlist. Yes, it's pricey, but top-down business-service views are where most organizations are headed, and Indicative excels here.

Indicative's Service Director

The first entry in our APM software Rolling Review is Indicative Software. Its Service Director offering, now in Version 8.0, promises a single-product approach to holistic application performance management that seeks to eliminate the complexity and ultra-high cost for multiple components that make many enterprises wary of traditional APM suites.
In the Kickoff to this Rolling Review we discussed the myriad ways APM continues to vex organizations that have even a smidgeon of complexity in their application architectures. Traditional APM software is complex, costly—and required if IT is to have any hope of untangling the cause of performance slowdowns or discovering why network capacity is being gobbled by a particular application.

Fortunately for IT, newer vendors like Indicative are challenging established purveyors of management systems, like HP/Mercury, IBM and CA/Wily, by offering easier-to-use tools that are still plenty capable of monitoring enterprise environments.

For example, one area of confusion for IT groups is determining which type of data collection method is best for their enterprise. With synthetic transactions, software- and hardware-based probes, and client and application agents available, each vendor has a different philosophy. Indicative simplifies matters by relying on a combination approach, with agentless synthetic transactions at the core. This method focuses on a service-centric methodology to monitor the overall health and performance of the application. Service Director also has the ability to integrate into existing agents and data sources.

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