Ever wondered how systems integrators or vendors get a snapshot/inventory of your enterprise environments? They often use a complex combination of tools, involves a whole bunch of scripting and often costs a healthy sum of services dollars to do annual health checks.
Today with open API’s and a big push for vendor neutrality, much of these information are easily attainable. While less scripting and more RAW data, there’s still a need to understand how it all comes together and correlate to each other. Net of it, we just want an easy capture tool with usable data.
Fret no more! I have a recommendation for you guys today!
LiveOptics is a tool that I commonly use in the field to get usable information from my customers environment. It provides me comprehensive details of compute, storage, and network utilisation across the specified domains. It provides me the capability to quickly understand the customers environment and not have to spend more time massaging scripts.
Here is a high level step-by-step of how it works.
You register for an account (did I mention that this is FREE?)
Download the Collector binary. The collector is pretty flexible as it can collect pretty much from most platforms. The only platforms UNSUPPORTED today are AIX, BSD & HP-UX.
The collector is a simple .EXE file which involves NO INSTALLATION. It is an executable that you run, and start feeding it information on the environment that you want it to capture. Credentials are obviously required for you to capture data. The collector is often installed on a workstation that has connectivity to the environment that you are capturing.
The duration of capture is between anywhere between 1 hour to 7 days. For anything between 1-24 hours, you can have the capture dumped to an offline file, and upload manually to the site. For captures up to 7 days, the workstation would be required to have outbound web access as it streams collected data to the LiveOptics analytic engine.
Once complete, you will be able to login to the site and view the capture.
Truly, no frills and easy to use to be honest. It is fool proof in many ways.
Here is what I really like about it.
It is vendor agnostic. It doesn’t matter who the hardware vendor is and it collects it just the same.
Privacy of collection. All data collected are only viewable by the user. If you would like to share it with another user on LiveOptics, you can specifically share that particular report only.
No more guessing PCPU : VCPU ratios, memory utilisations and IOPS. I have pretty definitive and justifiable data to defend any design I’m going to be building in the future.
Assuming you allow streaming of data to LiveOptics, you get to see the data capture build-up as it comes through. No more waiting for the entire capture to complete.
Simple correlation, with clear explanation of the metrics collected and how to interpret it.
Finally, cool graphs and visual representations of data. Graphs, metrics and dashboards you can easily cut an paste into a monthly management report! I don’t care if you are an admin generating monthly report to your managers or an integrator doing health check, but these reports look very professionally done.
The reports can be exported in any format that you require, XLS, PPT, or PDF, and you can pick and select what you want in them.
I personally recommend my customers to take me up on an offer to do a free health check for them, alternatively they can do it themselves. Like I mentioned earlier, it helps me understand your environment better and for customers, a good snapshot of your environment (across all infrastructure).
I’ve included a few screenshots here. Hope you guys give it a try.