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SteelCentral amps up visibility in the cloud

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Riverbed Technology has announced new enhancements to Riverbed SteelCentral that bring major advances to troubleshooting capabilities and improved monitoring across the cloud while simultaneously improving ease of use and scalability.
These enhancements continue to support a common theme of improved SteelCentral platform integration while enhancing several critical capabilities, including:
* Extending powerful monitoring capabilities into the cloud with Microsoft Azure and AWS;
* Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and containerized environments;
* Large-scale virtualized network performance monitoring;
* Expanded unified communications (UC) monitoring with new support for Skype for Business; and
* Next-generation diagnostics and troubleshooting.
“This release of SteelCentral delivers significant enhancements in cloud-based performance monitoring, along with new capabilities that will help accelerate business execution and boost productivity,” says Wimpie van Rensburg, country manager: sub Saharan Africa at Riverbed. “As more enterprises embrace digital and cloud services, SteelCentral provides the high definition visibility that is critical to enabling and assuring the success of these transformational initiatives.
“SteelCentral is the only performance management solution that can deliver comprehensive insight into end user experience, application, network, and infrastructure performance in a unified, central view. It truly is the command center for application performance for the digital enterprise.”

Extended visibility into the cloud, PaaS and containers. In its quest to increase agility, IT is adopting cloud services and related technologies like PaaS, containers and micro-services to deliver applications faster and to ensure that they can scale as usage increases. With this release, IT can automatically scale monitoring across applications that leverage these technologies. IT Operations and development teams can visualize applications’ behavior in real-time to troubleshoot existing issues or to proactively improve performance. Additionally, this release of SteelCentral AppInternals introduces out-of-the-box monitoring for applications deployed on Microsoft Azure Cloud Services, and will also be conveniently offered on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Marketplace for AWS customers.

Further, SteelCentral vastly improves the ability to monitor applications deployed on PaaS and containerized environments. As these environments dynamically scale during peak and off-peak periods, conventional performance monitoring tools that trace interactions between servers cannot coherently represent application behavior. This release introduces the Application Performance Graph that visually maps interactions between application modules in real-time, regardless of the underlying infrastructure. This reveals dependencies and hotspots obscured by the elasticity of the environment so that IT can observe and fix issues with the most overarching business impact.

Large-scale virtualized network performance monitoring. IT organizations have increasingly adopted server virtualization as a result of its widely recognized benefits of cost savings and ease of provisioning and deployment; however, as the datacenter becomes increasingly virtualized, it often results in visibility blind spots. With this release, Riverbed vastly improves the ability for companies to monitor virtualized server traffic. By redesigning how packet capture data is incorporated, SteelCentral has significantly enhanced productivity associated with monitoring and troubleshooting high-performance virtualized networks.

Expanded unified communications monitoring.  As companies increasingly use unified communications (UC) applications, identifying the root causes of network degradations, device errors, or user mistakes across these solutions is time-consuming and repetitive for IT staff.  SteelCentral monitors performance across multiple UC solutions – including for the first time Microsoft Skype for Business in conjunction with Cisco and Avaya UC traffic – with a multi-vendor, multi-tenant dashboard that provides an at-a- glance view of overall UC performance. Network engineers can view information about usage and adoption as well as call performance, and troubleshoot performance problems using common language and workflows for the most often-encountered UC issues. There is immediate productivity with zero need to train on different tools or vendor terminology. In addition, global UC performance analysis is now blended with performance analysis from networks, other applications and infrastructure in the SteelCentral Portal, providing IT teams with unified and holistic view of performance.

Next-generation diagnostics and troubleshooting. As application performance takes an increasingly central role to the business, proactive monitoring and troubleshooting the application infrastructure is a critical element in managing the business – whether that application is deployed in the cloud or on-premises. With this release Riverbed has drastically improved the ability for IT managers to troubleshoot network and application issues.

SteelCentral has modernized the interface of SteelCentral NetProfiler to improve usability and performance. The Preferred Interfaces screen and Network Hotspots dashboard shows top utilized interfaces as well as interfaces with the worst user response times. As a result, network managers are able to quickly recognize areas that require additional attention to improve network performance overall and proactively make adjustments.