About the Gartner Magic Quadrants
Gartner is a leading analysts in the market space known as APM (Application Performance Monitoring) and NPM (Network Performance Monitoring). Their annually published Magic Quadrant has a significant influence on buying decisions and the product roadmap from the different vendors and their products. Therefore we use the relevant Magic Quadrant as a reference for how we work and the solutions we choose.
When having conversations about the expected results with visibility on the performance and security of applications and networks, people have different perspectives; especially around abbreviations like APM and NPM; let alone when adding aa-NPM, NPM-D and VM to the equation.
What makes it even more challenging is that vendors with infrastructure products like taps, packet aggregators and packet brokers are often using phrases like “visibility” or “network visibility”. To some extent, people translate this as having visibility on what their applications and networks are doing.
To make sure everybody is on the same page, a brief overview of the monitoring definitions as outlined in the different, relevant Magic Quadrants for Gartner:
Gartner Magic Quadrant on Application Performance Monitoring
Gartner defines Application Performance Monitoring (APM) as having a way of:
- Digital experience monitoring (DEM)
- Application discovery, tracing and diagnostics (ADTD)
- Application analytics (AA)
By the way this is described, only web applications are supported. In addition, instrumenting web applications to the full extent of an APM solution require agents on all systems belonging to the applications to be monitored.
Deploying such agents requires access to the operating system of the clients (for the synthetic monitoring) and the application servers (for all other types of monitoring). This means that “by nature”, it is mandatory to have these applications running in a privately owned environment like a privately owned datacenter, a private cloud or an IaaS (i.e. Infrastructure-as-a-Service).
Deploying an APM solution for cloud services like SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) and PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service) limits the instrumentation to Real-User-Monitoring (RUM) and STM (Synthetic Transaction Monitoring).
Garnter Magic Quadrant on Network Performance Monitoring
The Network Performance Monitoring space (NPM) has gone through some changes over the years. You may remember abbreviations such as aaNPM (Application Aware Network Performance Monitoring) and NPMD (Network Performance Monitoring and Diagnostics).
While both areas are utilizing packet sniffing (i.e. wire data) there is a significant difference. The aaNPM-area is about collecting meta data about (for example) transactions of web applications and databases. While the NPMD-area is about collecting flow statistics and storing packets for retrospective analysis.
Until a few years age, both where seperate MQ's. In 2013, Gartner decided to make aaNPM part of their APM-MQ and within that the RUM section. The NPMD-MQ has remain the same. More information can be found in this blog.
Since this market space is about analyzing application flows, the sweet spot for NPMD type of solutions is:
- Domain and root-cause analysis when experiencing performance issues.
- Detect network oriented attacks like for example DDoS.
- Complementary support for different type of security systems.
- Can be used in any type of infrastructure: SaaS, IaaS, PaaS, private and hybrid.
Because of this sweet spot, we believe that the network is a good (or even the best) starting point for application health-check's and Visibility-as-a-Service.
Thank you for your interest!