MONITORING AND MANAGING CRITICAL APPLICATION PERFORMANCE WITH EXINDA

By Jim Dixon

Senior Solutions Engineer

Whether your critical applications are on-premise or in the cloud, Exinda’s Network Orchestrator allows for the simple, wizard driven monitoring and management of critical application performance, including applications from Exinda’s proprietary database of over 2000 apps or customer created custom applications.  With Exinda’s application performance monitoring notifications can be sent before the phone calls start. And with application performance management, critical applications can be protected, ensuring reliable quality of experience (QoE) and consistent access to applications while reducing the impact of recreational traffic like Netflix, P2P or TOR.

 Application Performance Monitoring

Exinda’s Solution Center allows for the easy creation of application performance monitoring widgets via an Application Performance Score (APS) report that can be run with variable, selectable intervals. Just choose Custom Application Performance in the solution center and run the simple wizard (figure 1, below).

screenshot exinda solution center

Figure 1. Solution Center, Custom Application Performance Wizard

 

Exinda then monitors the application for a baseline period and sets normalized thresholds for several performance metrics. After the baseline period, you may choose that application in the Solution Center to view a custom report (Figure 2, below) that includes throughput, top internal and external hosts using or serving the application and an Application Performance Score (APS) based on a 10-point scale. Report intervals range from the last 60 minutes to the last year and include custom intervals. The APS score and the individual metrics from which it is calculated can be seen in Figure 3, below.

 

Screen shot exinda 2 Solution Center Custom Application Report

Figure 2. Solution Center Custom Application Report

 


Figure 3. Custom Application Report, Application Performance Score & Metrics, Top Internal Listeners

 

Clicking “Show more…” in the custom report (Figure 2, above) produces an in-depth report with data on all individual metrics used to calculate the APS (Figure 4, below).

 

4 Exinda APS report

Figure 4. Full APS Report with Individual Metric Graphs (only first four metrics displayed)

 

The several APS Metrics scores – Network Delay, Server Delay, Jitter, etc. – are averages in milliseconds for the chosen interval. Green shading indicates performance better than the assigned threshold, yellow shading indicates the threshold was exceeded and red indicates a threshold exceeded by a factor of four. Thresholds can be modified, or a specific alert threshold can also be set at any point in time, to align with known network conditions or to prevent too many or two few alerts. Email alerts are automatic if an email hub is configured and email accounts are added.

A summary of APS scores for all monitored applications is also available as an overlaid line graph (Figure 5, below), and as a summary table (Figure 6, below).

 

5 all APS scores graph

Figure 5. All APS Scores Graph

 

Figure 6. All APS Scores Table

 

In addition to the APS, the Exinda appliance provides various other means of measuring application performance and network service levels. Here is a summary of application & network performance and health monitoring capabilities, including APS:

  • APS: Application Performance Score passively measures application response times and scores application performance against pre-set criteria.
  • SLA: Service Level monitoring actively measures network response times.
  • TCP Efficiency: Passively measures TCP retransmissions and calculates TCP Efficiency.
  • TCP Health: Passively measures TCP connection states and calculates TCP Health

 

Application Performance Management

The Exinda Solution Center will also suggest and guide, via wizard, changes in bandwidth management policy. It will notify the administrator of changes in network behavior or suggest policies for new applications seen on the network or applications that are using disproportionate or increasing levels of bandwidth. Some examples are seen in figure 7, below.

5 Solution Center Reccomendations

Figure 7. Solution Center Recommendations

 

The Solution Center also has wizards to create policy to control recreational traffic and P2P traffic. Exinda comes with a default policy set and a deployment wizard to create an initial policy library based on the basic network design and network placement of the Exinda appliance.  With Exinda you can allocate bandwidth by application, user or device and prioritize important applications over recreational traffic. Undesirable or recreational applications can be constrained with throughput limits, while important and critical applications can be protected with bandwidth guarantees.  Figure 6, below, shows an example: a policy guaranteeing voice traffic 15% of the bandwidth with no limits and assigning the highest burst priority available.

Figure 8. Policy Library Example

 

Summary

Exinda provides a simple, yet elegant means of catching application performance issues as they start and a means for both the effective prevention and remediation of application performance issues, as well as providing extensive monitoring and reporting on application performance.

 References

http://docs.exinda.com/ga-released/exos/7/PDFs/app-performance.pdf

http://docs.exinda.com/ga-released/exos/7.4.1/Help/Default.htm

 

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