Getting Started – What BlueStripe does for System Center users

This fall we introduced the BlueStripe Performance Center for System Center – a full integration of our dynamic application maps and performance monitoring data into SCOM.

For System Center administrators, Performance Center offers 3 key values:

  1. Easy use of the distributed application concept – Automatic creation and update of distributed applications
  2. Triage from within SCOM – use the map to identify slow components, then drill-in to get to root cause
  3. Application performance monitoring – using BlueStripe’s dashboards or 3rd party solutions from SquaredUp or Savision

Setup is pretty simple. Performance Center starts with BlueStripe’s FactFinder software. FactFinder uses a Management Server (which can be deployed on a Windows or Linux machine or VM, or on an Azure VM) and agents called Collectors. The BlueStripe Collectors are deployed out to the relevant servers (running on Windows, Linux, Solaris, and AIX, on physical, virtual, and cloud-based hosts) and then communicate back to the BlueStripe Management Server. Each agent monitors all the processes and connections for that the server/VM. The Management Server uses the process and connection data to identify and map the individual applications.

The maps and the accompanying monitoring data is ported into System Center via the Performance Center integration. For the SCOM user, the result is an application view that looks like this:

Distributed Application maps in System Center

 

Each server/VM that makes up the distributed application is shown. The application maps update automatically – performance metrics and new/dropped application components are added/removed as the application changes – so you never have to rebuild the application once it is loaded.

The individual network connection lines serve as heat maps, showing the response time of the connections. This is key – as it allows for rapid triage in the event of a slowdown. Once the slow component is isolated, the user can drill into the individual server to see performance metrics for both the processes and the infrastructure – combining BlueStripe and System Center’s monitoring metrics.

Distributed application maps in System Center

With the problem isolated, the user can then pivot to use System Center’s infrastructure management capabilities to address remediation – and all this takes place within Operations Manager.

Finally, Performance Center facilitates monitoring and reporting. Starting with a service level dashboard, the System Center user can see a single dashboard that shows the performance of applications, application tiers, and individual components that they care about. Further, BlueStripe data that is in SCOM can be used to integrate directly to 3rd party dashboards from Savision and SquaredUp. Here’s an example of what you can do:

Distributed application dashboard

To learn more, take a look at the white paper “The BlueStripe Performance Center – Complete Distributed Application Monitoring for System Center 2012.

 

 

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