AIOps – the ‘Google Maps’ of hybrid IT environments
While cloud and virtualisation technologies have done wonders to improve server utilisation, curb IT costs, and support digital transformation, the downside is limited visibility across the entire interconnected IT stack – transactions, applications, and physical and virtual infrastructure.
This low visibility into business transaction flows makes it tougher for IT operations to troubleshoot application and system performance issues, which can lead to disruption of key business processes.
So says Sameer Padhye, CEO of FixStream, a provider of solutions to automatically detect, predict and resolve issues across the hybrid IT stack.
Padhye uses the analogy of navigation software.
“In an unfamiliar city, getting around is as simple as opening Google Maps, which will not only show you the direction, but what is along the way, and even heavy traffic areas.
“Now imagine if you had a Google Maps-type of solution for managing your end-to-end IT environment, which would display the full picture of your complex, dynamic hybrid stack in real-time and automatically keep up with changes.”
Padhye says with a visual map of the entire environment, a business could easily connect the millions of data points, identify the resources within the datacentre, their dependencies, the services that run on them, and all of the business applications.
“And if the solution highlighted trouble spots – the way Google Maps highlights traffic jams – you could figure out what’s happening, decide what to do about it, and act quickly to resolve issues and ward off potential downtime. To go a step further, it would also be great if the solution could predict when the next issue would arise.”
AI for IT operations
He says such solutions do exist, and they’re called AIOps – artificial intelligence for IT operations.
AIOps are multi-layered platforms that automate and improve IT operations by employing analytics and machine learning to analyse big data collected from a variety of tools and devices, to automatically detect and react to issues in real-time.
“Today, most datacentres are hybrid," says Padhye. "Distributed applications and trends like Vmotion, which enables the live migration of running virtual machines from one physical server to another, make it very difficult to locate the devices, identify application flows and troubleshoot issues.”
FixStream’s tool, AIOps+, visually displays the entire topology of public and/or private datacentres, the devices within them and the applications they support.
It also either collects the operational data from devices or combines the alerts, faults, logs, tickets, changes and other important information from other siloed tools for correlated visibility.
“The Google Maps resemblances don’t stop there. AIOps+ solutions highlight trouble spots with red dots similar to Google Maps’ real-time accident location feature. It alerts users when there is an issue the same way Google Maps notifies its users when an accident is reported."