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Lesson learned in the Wizard of Oz: Always Pay Attention to the Man Behind the Curtain

By Anon Anon posted 10-26-2016 06:08 PM


You can call me a realist if you want, but I am not one enamored with the fantasy of a great and Wonderful Wizard of Oz. When the wizard tried to get Dorothy Gale and her friends to ignore what he was doing behind the curtain, he was hiding the truth from them. The truth of the matter is, the wizard was just a man, but everyone thought he was someone else. Yes, Dorothy and her friends were very happy to seek the great Wonderful Wizard thinking he had the answers to their desires. But, for the whole of the story, they were chasing after the wrong thing. It wasn’t until the end that they discovered the true wizard was just a man from Nebraska.


Don’t we do the same thing when we are monitoring our application data flows? Our Application Performance Management tool tells us where the bottlenecks are in our transactional data flows, but is it always that simple? For example, we think we know the root of our application performance problem when the database response times are getting longer, but we later find the real problem is in the infrastructure that hosts the database. It is time we look behind the curtain or our APM tool to see the infrastructure that is there.


Server Performance monitoring tools like CA Unified Infrastructure Management (CA UIM) is great for shedding light on issues with our infrastructure, but how do those issues impact the applications running on that infrastructure? Conversely, CA Application Performance Manager (CA APM) will show us the transactional dataflow and how well it is performing, but when our application is performing poorly because our infrastructure is slowing things down it is not always that easy to see the relationship between the two.


We need to change that!


I am presently focusing on creating a solution to bring CA APM and CA UIM together. I need to find the thought leaders out there who are realists like me and want to see the man behind the curtain. We have some questions to answer, and these can’t be answered alone.


If you desire to be one of those leaders, please follow this blog series as we take look for a way to make it easier to monitor our infrastructure and applications together.


Here are some questions we need to explore:

  • When my application users are suffering from a poor user experience due to poor application performance, what is the best way to see a comprehensive view of how my infrastructure performance is impacting my application performance?
  • When my application is running in a dynamic infrastructure—like a hybrid cloud—how do I maintain visibility in to my infrastructure that is changing as it transitions form a virtual environment on premise to a cloud infrastructure?
  • I have an application-transaction topology view, and an infrastructure topology view. Is there a way they can co-exist together?
  • I am an operator of our company’s infrastructure. What applications are running on my infrastructure, and how are they impacted by changes in the infrastructure?
  • I am an operator of my company’s key business applications. What changes in the infrastructure are impacting my user’s experience?

There is always more than one way to answer any of these questions. Additionally, there are answers that have not been given yet.


If you would like to participate in this discussion on the future of Application and Infrastructure Management, please comment below, and I will add you to a private community for further discussion.



06-27-2017 01:33 PM

Interested too, please add me in. Thanks

03-29-2017 08:41 PM

Interested. Please add me in. Thanks.

11-18-2016 08:42 AM

Thanks for tackling this.  Please add me to the discussion.

11-16-2016 03:14 AM

I am also interested in following this discussion, please add me as well. 




11-16-2016 12:27 AM

I'm interested in following this discussion, please add me.




11-15-2016 10:16 AM

Please add me Jim!

11-15-2016 07:17 AM


   Building an automated method of capturing and validating the application flow in the least intrusive way possible has been a problem in the past… We can only go so deep with transactions per second and CPU busy at each application component. To completely understand the application and how it scales we need to get into the details of the message flow… then we need to model it.

If that is where you are headed then please add me to your group,


11-15-2016 04:44 AM

Hi Jim


I missed the original post but have caught up now.


I've spent the majority of my career in either Performance Engineering (Pre-Prod) or Capacity Management (Prod), and have spent much of that time looking at approaches to addressing many of the points you raise in your post.


Please add me to the group.





11-14-2016 10:34 AM

Yes, Ray.  I think you are understanding much of the challenge.  Can I encourage you to please share this same comment in a post in the group?  You have been invited.

11-14-2016 06:02 AM

Please add me to the discussion, as there are many more questions than those that also need investigation.


For example, I've seen many, many designs that presuppose a detailed picture for a single application, but no one running solutions of this type has only a single system/application to monitor. Scale changes everything, so for the true Enterprise, how do we handle the fact that whatever picture can be drawn must also be replicated hundreds of times for other systems/applications? How do we handle that fact that not only are there different people with different interests and different levels of capability looking at these pictures, but if scale is really an issue, why (or when) are we even asking people to look?



11-07-2016 10:39 AM


10-28-2016 04:15 PM

Thank you for your interest.  I am actively working at standing up this group on the communities, and I hope to have it in place early next week.  You will receive an email from me with the link to join the group as soon as it is ready. 

I look forward to exploring this topic, and hearing the insight of the thought leaders in this group.

10-26-2016 07:34 PM

I would be interested to join the discussion please 

10-26-2016 06:14 PM

Sign me up!