A time machine for your IT

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As I was sitting on the runway recently, heading home from a series of customer meetings, a parallel between the airline industry and my own suddenly struck me. I'm not a nervous flyer - but for some reason my thoughts were drawn to the role of the Black Box.

 

For years now, every commercial airline has carried a Black Box, more commonly known as the Flight Data Recorder among those in the industry. Unfortunately, these boxes only tend to be mentioned in those exceptionally rare cases of an airline incident or, worse still, airline catastrophe. It is only then that Black Boxes become headline news and central in pinpointing the circumstances leading up to the incident and diagnosing any faults. I'm told that over the course of a transatlantic flight that a modern aeroplane such as the Boeing 777 can generate as much as 30TB of digital log data, which is later analyzed by flight engineers.

 

Clearly with passenger safety paramount, the airline and aerospace industries have always been at the forefront of mission critical engineering. It's surprising nevertheless that the IT industry has been relatively slow to adopt similar technology, given its increasing mission critical role in running business processes today.

 

IT operations' own Black Box

But this is changing. IT can now benefit from its own "Black Box" to ingest and interpret the huge volumes of operational data being generated across hardware and software platforms to pinpoint, resolve and even predict future problems.

 

HP Operations Analytics is a "Black Box" solution that consolidates IT data - including machine data, logs, events, topologies, and performance statistics. By making it possible to collect, store and analyse operational data, you can analyse all of your important information to diagnose problems and determine root cause.

 

Most of today's serious IT failures result from a seemingly minor event or change, which triggers an unpredictable chain reaction of consequences that cascades across the environment like a flash fire. When things go wrong, cross functional teams are scrambled to search their monitors and diagnostic tools for the needle in the haystack that's the clue to the root cause.  The problem is that by the time services are down, so are many of the dashboards in the operations centre, meaning that needle is now buried in a sea of red hay.

 

Rolling Back the Red Sea

This is where HP Operations Analytics really comes in to play. By rolling back the sea of red to the point in time when the event started to propagate, users can quickly pinpoint the original root cause and accelerate the resolution. We can literally dial back time and as a result typically reduce downtime by up to 80% and fix issues 80% faster.

 

And that’s not all. Our Black Box “time machine” can also look forward. As HP Operations Analytics is a HAVEn solution, it applies the huge “big data” processing power of Vertica analytics to predict potential failure scenarios before they begin to propagate. 

 

I’m glad to say that my flight back home was uneventful and stress free. With a Black Box in your data center maybe we can help generate the same effect for your business? In the meantime, if you have a question about HP Operations Analytics, or any of the HAVEn solutions,  they will all be very visible at HP Discover in Barcelona or if you can’t make it to Discover and want to find out more, just request us to make contact below.

 

Related links:

HP Propel and a vision for a next-generation service catalog

Announcing HP Propel: Choice without Compromise

An Agile Manifesto for enterprise IT

 

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About the Author
Rafael Brugnini (Rafa) serves as VP of EMEA & APJ for HP Software. Joining in 1996 and has more than 20 years of knowledge and experience l...


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