APM stands for application monitoring performance or management and is an umbrella term which refers to any software or procedure which helps you manage and monitor your apps, including code, user experience, transaction times and so on. In effect, it provides metrics that can indicate to you whether your apps are running smoothly and whether better efficiencies can be found.
Different Types of APM
In that it’s quite a general term, it can mean different things to different people. App-based metrics may be fairly limited and report how many clicks your app is getting but cannot reveal much more than that. Code level performance products are diagnostic tools to help identify issues with code without having to adjust it at the outset. A common scenario might be trying to track down an issue your code is causing with CPU or memory. Finally, network based APM (NPM) measures the performance of an app based on network traffic. There are tools that can encompass all of these metrics, or you can choose to focus on one area only.
Benefits of APM
APM products can help diagnose the cause of an issue as well as identify the issue itself. The data produced can harvest data showing overall patterns in traffic, most frequent transactions, and identify speed or connection issues. Using APM is like a diagnostic tool, pinpointing specific issues and identifying the cause. This can help developers drill down to locate teething problems and find solutions, improving the app’s performance and saving time and money.
Let’s imagine you are working without APM tools. You build a site or an app and launch it. After testing, it appears to work fine but you notice that although you seem to get quite a lot of traffic, most of these do not convert into sales. You also receive quite a lot of feedback that the site is slow, the app isn’t working, or certain functions do not seem to be working as they should. You dedicate a lot of time to tracking down each of these issues and running through a checklist of what could be the problem. Of course, any changes you make may cause conflicts, so you will also need to factor in time to check for those.
Let’s run the same scenario, but with APM. APM tools are running in real time and continuously, so even before your customers have discovered an issue, APM has already located it. What’s more, certain APM tools can also point to the root cause of the issue and if they are AI-enabled, they may have already fixed the problem. Because APM can follow the whole user experience through your app, your network and even monitor metrics at the user end, you have a detailed view of what is happening at each stage, backed up by accurate data. You can identify patterns that may inform subsequent design decisions to have your system running as smoothly as possible.
Benefits for Dockers
Docker technology has changed the cloud industry beyond recognition. However, what is a docker? It’s a method to optimize space and remove unnecessary files from the dashboard. In addition, it is a top industry standard for containerization – packaging and distributing apps in the most effective and efficient way. Docker technology is an open-source solution which allows developers to access their apps, preferred settings et cetera on other machines without having to install everything. In short, it manages everything you need in a container and this can allow developers to work remotely in an efficient manner. It’s essential that your docker containers are working efficiently, and there are dedicated metrics to evaluate and allow you to improve docker performance for maximum efficiency.
Within APM, host metrics may allow you to evaluate the performance of a host machine, but not of the containers themselves. A slow host can seriously impede your container’s performance so it’s vital to assess your application’s performance. Common metrics may measure CPU, host memory and disk space, and all of these will help developers to troubleshoot problems within an app, a network and at the user end of the experience. Developers could also consider investing in APM for docker metrics to analyze how well their containers are working.
Improved User Experience
As well as making your sites and apps more efficient, a key benefit is improved user experience. Ultimately, the success of your business may depend on how user-friendly and functional your sites or app is. As technology improves, users are expecting a more streamlined, robust system that functions seamlessly and rapidly. Even for the biggest names within certain industries, a malfunctioning site can seriously damage their reputation and therefore their sales. For developers creating sites for clients, having to continuously troubleshoot issues, it’s both time-consuming and does not reflect well on the service they offer. For systems within a company or an industry, delays caused by inefficiencies within networks, apps or sites cost many man hours every year and impact productivity.
Easy and Efficient
One of the biggest benefits of using APM is that it’s easy, cost effective, and efficient. There are multiple tools on the market to provide monitoring of key metrics, and the technology is improving all the time. It would not be an understatement to say that APM should be an essential part of every IT set up. It’s a no-brainer when you consider all the benefits it can bring to your organization.