Monitoring of key devices in your network is a very big business. Knowing what’s going on with your devices can keep you in the loop when troubles start to happen. Almost as important, though, it event correlation. Taking data from multiple sources and presenting it in such as way as to see how the minor events leading up to a problem can have an important impact is critical in larger infrastructures. Many companies have software designed for this purpose, and one of them was kind enough to present to us at Tech Field Day 5.
Xangati is focused on virtualization and their software acts as a dashboard the collects information from various different sources in your network, from ESX boxes to network interfaces. It presents this information to you in an easy-to-read format, the oft-used “single pane of glass” metaphor. One neat thing that their software allows you to do is go back in time to see the events taking place right up to the point where your VMs went belly up, for instance. This DVR-like functionality is very helpful when you find yourself in a situation where no one problem was the root cause of your issue, but instead you find yourself succumbing to the weight of multiple minor issues, the “Death by 1,000 Cuts” syndrome. With Xangati, you can replay a mountain of data to find the root cause of your issue without needing to sift through endless router logs or VMware alerts. One pane of glass means one source of easy-to-digest information.
For the moment, Xangati appears to be focused on providing their services in a report-only mode. At a roundtable afterwards, though, Sean Clark brought up the point that this could be viewed as a great framework for allowing some kind of automated DRS-type solution that draws on the firehose of information gathered by the current Xangati tool. Is this something that might lead them to being a target ripe for acquisition? Or is this a capability that might be developed in house at some point? I can’t say for sure, but I know that getting good information about what’s going on in your network is the first step in being proactive about troubleshooting. And based on what I’ve seen of Xangati’s tools, I think they’ve got the right idea to get the information to you when you need it the most. I’m sure I’m going to take a second look at this product as time allows.
Tech Field Day Disclaimer
Xangati was a sponsor of Tech Field Day 5, and as such was partly responsible for my airfare and hotel accommodations. In addition, they were the sponsor of our Thursday night meal and trip to the Computer History Museum. At no time did they ask for or receive any consideration in the writing of this article. The opinions and analysis expressed herein are mine and mine alone.