Sunday, September 9, 2018

VMware Wavefront - Relevance for your Operations


VMware Wavefront is the new shinny tool in the armory of the VMware Cloud Management suite of solutions.
Wavefront has come to VMware family as a part of an acquisition concluded in May 2017. 

By definition Wavefront is a SaaS based, real-time metric monitoring tool with streaming analytical capabilities. Its powered by a strong analytical engine which can give real time visualization by doing some powerful query based analysis on the pushed stream of metrics.

Some of its Real World Use cases

a. Make DevOps life easy

It primarily targeted for developers as it aims to improve the feedback looping experience as a part of DevOps practice.

OODA loop strategy in ALM cycle is essential for making DevOps truly successful.


DevOps team would want to reduce the gap between the developers and Ops by extending alerts, monitoring and visualization to the developers directly so they can instantaneously see the impact of let's say a code-commit.
Wavefront can be extended to not just SysOps teams but to SREs and DevOps admins as well.




b. Purpose built for Cloud Native Environments

Wavefront has been developed by engineers who were at one point involved in Google's and Twitter's Containers Ops Management projects. 
They have built Wavefront with a mindset that it should be able to handle CNA environments running with Containers and Microservices at scale.
As we speak, wavefront has support for various Container based services like Dockers, K8s, PKS, Amazon EKS, VMware K8s Engine etc.

It has an easy integration process to capture relevant metrics from a Container based platforms and out of box Dashboards/Visualization to give a clear visibility into the most granular things in container setup.

Example screenshot




c. Support for Public Cloud environments

Most of the Development houses, FinTech and even Enterprises are now a consumer of Public cloud services. People have already started building and hosting their application stacks on Public clouds like AWS, Azure and GCP etc.
Not just that but an Organization may be a consumer of multiple such clouds at a same given point of time.
Ops teams have to depend on the independent monitoring services of these cloud providers to monitor the applications.
Wavefront can be the single pane of glass to monitor various services across multiple public clouds.
It has a rich set of integrations with Public Cloud platforms like AWS, Azure and GCP. VMware is working to build up more such integrations out of box.


d. Application Monitoring

Besides monitoring platform services like Public cloud or Cloud Native, Wavefront can also do Application monitoring.
It supports various app monitoring agents but has standardized on telegraf agent. Telegraf can be installed in App environment/OSE and with a basic configuration in the telegraf.conf file, we can start collecting OS and App metrics and push them to Wavefront tenant.
Hence with the magic of strong analytics engine, we can create Operations and KPI based charts and Dashboards to monitor OS and Application behavior.


VMware team has made it easy to give out of box integration and visualization for a plethora of COTS and new age application platforms, Databases, DevOps Tools, OSE etc. For an updated list of available integrations, you can always refer to https://www.wavefront.com/integrations/


e. Alert Event based Automation

Automation is a key element to a Cloud based environment which may be running On-Prem or public cloud based workloads. Again as a part of OODA loop technology one would need to integrate operations with Automation to achieve capabilities like Self Healing actions.
Legacy Monitoring systems are limited to simple, threshold-based alerts. With Wavefront you can create smart alerts that can dynamically filter noice and report true anomalies.
Besides that you can create actions based on these alerts to trigger basic notifications using Email or Pagerduty services.
However it also has strong integration with Webhooks. Webhooks allow your application to send out information using HTTP callback, which can further talk to an orchestrator engine or automation platform to instantiate tasks based on defined conditions.


In all its a very powerful monitoring tool which can meet the needs of Developers and Ops team, scale from on-prem platforms to Public cloud services, operating systems to applications.

You can enroll into a free trail at https://www.wavefront.com/sign-up
Reach out to your VMware account management team for a deep-dive session on Wavefront.


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