Through its alliance with F5, NETSCOUT Systems has extended the reach of its nGeniusOne enterprise performance management platform to support custom applications.
The nGeniusONE platform supports more than 1,000 voice, video and business data applications using NETSCOUT InfiniStreamNG appliances in combination with nGeniusONE to provide visibility into any infrastructure environment, including data centers, private and public cloud and co-location facilities. The integration with F5 extends those capabilities to add support for custom applications via integration with F5 BIG-IP server pool definitions that can now be directly imported into nGeniusOne.
Eileen Haggerty, area vice president for enterprise product and solutions marketing for NETSCOUT, said that approach enables nGeniusOne to access clear, unencrypted traffic from the BIG-IP Local Traffic Manager.
As more cloud-native applications built using microservices are deployed across distributed computing environments, network latency is becoming a bigger DevOps challenge. A wide range of networking issues can adversely impact application performance, but without any visibility into network traffic, it can be challenging to determine the root cause of an issue. NETSCOUT has deployed a global network of appliances to surface those issues.
A recent report published by Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) found the average enterprise uses 464 custom applications and expects to deploy 37 new applications in the next 12 months. At that rate, the number of organizations likely to encounter networking issues is only going to increase, noted Haggerty.
It’s not clear to what degree network operations (NetOps) teams are becoming integrated with DevOps teams that build and deploy custom applications. The need for both teams to collaborate more effectively is becoming more apparent as more application code is deployed at the network edge. In some cases, developers are now programmatically invoking network resources directly, while other organizations provide developers access to a portal to self-service their requirements within the context of a set of pre-defined guardrails. Regardless of approach, the need for greater visibility into the underlying networks that custom applications depend on has become critical.
Exactly how much that need will drive organizations to embrace one networking vendor over another remains to be seen. DevOps teams are starting to exercise more influence as organizations realize how much they depend on custom software to drive digital business processes. DevOps teams need to be able to understand whether an issue is the result of a networking problem or an inherent problem with the code written or the way an application has been deployed.
Of course, DevOps and NetOps teams don’t share a common nomenclature so the cultural divide between these teams can be wide. The simpler it becomes for NetOps teams to share visibility into networking services the easier it becomes to bridge that divide. Developers should be able to see for themselves how changes to application code might potentially improve network performance. In the absence of any proof to the contrary, most DevOps teams will simply assume there is a fundamental flaw in the networking services being provided.