• United States

BMC and RTO raise the troubleshooting bar with record and replay

Apr 19, 20063 mins
Data Center

* RTO announces PinPoint 2.1; BMC acquires Identify Software

Is there an IT administrator who hasn’t yearned to make time stand still? Troubleshooting sudden or intermittent glitches can suck up time and staff like a black hole. Most of us have had the unpleasant experience of sitting in a room with experts from multiple infrastructure support teams, surrounded by empty pizza boxes and going through sniffer traces, trying to figure out, “What the heck is going on?” Two recent announcements from BMC and RTO can simplify this process by orders of magnitude. In addition, they just might be able to help IT organizations reduce the estimated 60% to 80% of the typical budget currently allocated for administrative costs.

Last month, RTO Software announced PinPoint 2.1, which incorporates agent-based technology that collects and analyzes transaction metrics and automatically benchmarks them to establish a norm. When application performance problems or bottlenecks occur, PinPoint gives support techs the capability to “replay” exactly what was happening across the infrastructure as the issue unfolded. Further, technicians can replay these metrics over and over, as many times as is necessary to troubleshoot and resolve the problem. Replays can be paused and enterprise IT staff can drill down for details on any metric across any server in the environment.

PinPoint simplifies the enormous task of sifting through all metrics from all servers to determine the source of an issue, a major headache for IT departments of any size. The result can be significant savings from decreased IT staff hours and reduced application downtime. Check out the recent joint EMA and RTO Webinar that includes a compelling customer story.

Also last month, BMC announced its acquisition of Identify Software. Identify’s flagship product, AppSight, captures and stores data during problem events, eliminating the need to recreate the event when performing root cause analysis. This acquisition adds a critical component to BMC’s Transaction Management strategy announced in February as well as to the company’s long-term commitment to its Business Service Management (BSM) directive.

AppSight’s agent, called the Black Box repository, gathers performance and availability metrics from clients and servers throughout the transaction execution environment. AppSight also provides a replay feature that can significantly simplify application troubleshooting as well as role-based custom views into correlated transaction metrics. These views enable a support engineer to look at configuration and performance data while an application developer can look at specific code errors. This flexibility gives AppSight value both in production and pre-production lifecycles. EMA’s impact brief on this acquisition is available here.

Is it just a coincidence that announcements on two root cause analysis products came out during such a short time period? No, it isn’t. Enterprise IT is looking for ways to reduce costs and vendors are responding with sophisticated products built on patented technologies that can help ease the technology support burden. Products that are simple to install, provide quick time to value, and are cost-effective are in big demand these days, and both of these products are likely to enjoy substantial success in today’s marketplace.