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Compuware Perform 2014 Conference

by Jonah Kowall  |  October 24, 2014  |  17 Comments

I was invited and able to attend Compuware Perform in Orlando the week of November 6th for a couple days before heading off to Europe for 10 days of vacation, hence this blog post was slightly delayed (not to mention the Magic Quadrant and other research which is imminent now). The conference was great to attend as Dynatrace re-introduced the world to the brand, what old is once again new. The products have been renamed as follows:

 

Dynatrace

 

John Van Siclen who was previously the CEO of dynaTrace (acquired by Compuware in 2011) was the general manager for the Compuware APM business. He is now the General Manager for the Dynatrace company. The expectations are that this will be a standalone company when the privatization of Compuware closes in the fourth quarter of this year (more on that later). John’s keynote had some interesting points, Compuware has an impressive 89.9 net promoter score, and an online community of 84,000 people.

Dynatrace launched 4 key targets and messages for the solutions : Launch readiness, User analytics, Performance Engineering, and Production Monitoring

Dynatrace plugins will be open (as other APM companies have done) and they will be leveraging github : http://www.compuware.com/en_us/application-performance-management/products/user-experience-management/real-user-monitoring-web-and-mobile/plugin.html

Innovation will flow from Ruxit to Dynatrace including the network probe agents and the UI. I’ve already posted my thoughts and time with Ruxit, which were positive.

Dynatrace 6 was unveiled which included agent support for technologies such as NGnix, IBM IMS. There were improvements for TIBCO ActiveMatrix, TIBCO EMS, Java 8, iOS 8, NGINX, HBase, Cassandra, MongoDB and iPlanet. Dynatrace showed the new Web UI, which provides some high level views outside of the thick java based client they use today. I wasn’t too impressed with the new dashboard and UI, but it was an early-state prototype I wouldn’t have expected to see in a public forum. I am sure that will improve considerably before it ships next year.

Some nice improvements in the synthetic monitoring, including a free web test for lead generation (I still believe what you get for free with webpagetest is far more complete).  Investment in synthetic monitoring seems too heavy, this has been an issue with Compuware for quite some time.

I spent time in a couple sessions on DCRUM, and the product are still very network buyer and legacy application focused. I wasn’t too impressed with what I saw. I would have liked to have seen a more innovative approach to solving these problems, similar to the agent present in Ruxit, which is how we see the future of network analysis being done.

The one large piece missing from my discussions and the messaging was analytics, while Dynatrace has lots of great analytics technologies within the products for determining root cause, understanding performance deviations, and finding the major issues within applications, the broader analytics and ITOA strategies many are strategically invested in is something which Dynatrace’s messaging consists of integrations with providers like Geckoboard, Splunk, and others. This is clearly not what APM buyers are looking for today.

On the non-product side many of you are aware that private equity (PE) firm Thoma Bravo, who have an extensive background in the monitoring and management space (Network Instruments, Keynote, Infovista, and others) have decided to purchase Compuware and divide the company into several parts to drive growth. While many PE firms operate in other ways Thoma Bravo is a unique firm. One of the VPs Chip Virnig spoke a little about how  APM is a great market to place bets (which I agree with) – http://www.thomabravo.com/team/virnig/

Some recommended reading about PE firms (sorry clients only) : How to Re-evaluate Strategic Vendors Acquired by Private Equity
http://www.gartner.com/document/2840319

I spoke to several customers, and some were using end to end mobile APM. Interesting use cases, and capabilities within the offering which have matured nicely. Expect new research and presentations on mobile APM in the next 6 weeks at our upcoming Gartner Data Center Conference. Dynatrace 6 offers major improvements on scalability in terms of how many controllers are needed. Customers confirmed they needed far fewer controllers and management servers in the newer products, which is good to hear from end users. There is more planned in terms of scale and capabilities.

Only being able to attend one day of three, I got a lot of value out of this conference.

Disclosure : Compuware paid for travel and hotel for my attendance at this conference

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Category: analytics  apm  it-operations  itoa  mobile-and-endpoint-technologies  monitoring  

Jonah Kowall
Research Vice President
3.5 years with Gartner
20 years IT industry

Jonah Kowall is a research Vice President in Gartner's IT Operations Research group. He focuses on application performance monitoring (APM), Unified Monitoring, Network Performance Monitoring and Diagnostics (NPMD), Infrastructure Performance Monitoring (IPM), IT Operations Analytics (ITOA), and general application and infrastructure availability and performance monitoring technologies. Read Full Bio


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