Recently, I published an online article with Database Trends and Applications exploring the advantages of automation in the data center. The article covers the issues faced by data centers as IT ecosystems become more complex and data traffic increases, the most glaring of which is the cost associated with an unexpected outage. At $7,900 per minute, those costs can add up quickly!
Another issue is the number of alerts that today’s disparate monitoring tools generate. IT teams are constantly bombarded with alert after alert, even in the dead of night. Some of these alerts require an IT professional’s expertise and others are just annoying. For those issues that don’t need human attention, automation can be used to remedy the system. As we all know, sometimes a reboot is all that’s required to get a piece of equipment back up and running.
With the ability to execute scripts upon the triggering of an alert, SAP IT Operations Analytics (SAP ITOA) is part of the next-generation solution for data center management. The alert block in the Analytics Builder (pictured below) can be used to call APIs from other native monitoring applications within the data center, leveraging the expertise of these specific tools. The increase in automation frees up the IT teams to perform higher-value work and decrease the number of noisy alerts they receive.
Adding to the problems is that alerts today are triggered by static thresholds that might have be defined at set-up and not changed for years. By leveraging SAP ITOA’s out-of-the-box predictive functionality, the benefit of automation can be enhanced greatly. The time series forecasting, easily activated by sliding a toggle, enables use cases that were previously unattainable with traditional monitoring solutions with no PhD in statistics required. For example, SAP IT Operations Analytics can predict when disk space is going to run out, add more from a shared pool, and then release that borrowed disk back to the pool when usage drops again (see video below). The catastrophe of running out of disk space is avoided without any IT personnel involvement.
For more advanced use cases, SAP ITOA can be used in conjunction with SAP Predictive Analytics. My colleague John Schitka wrote an excellent article in SAPinsider about the organizational shift from reactive to proactive IT management that looks at how SAP ITOA and SAP Predictive Analytics can work together to bring your IT department to the next level.
Automation in the data center can help minimize alerts, allowing your IT team to focus on high-level tasks. With predictive capabilities, SAP ITOA takes automation to the next level by proactively addressing potential issues. Check out the article about automation in the data center over at Database Trends and Applications for further insights and please leave your comments below.