Intelligent CIO North America Issue 21 - Page 63

When a synthetic monitoring solution places all its bots in the cloud , they will miss the problems users out in the field commonly see .
“ They miss problems in what I call the ‘ digital wilderness ’,” said Conley . “ That is all the routing points between our user and the cloud .”
Monitoring the digital wilderness
Cox Automotive selected Catchpoint as its monitoring partner . Catchpoint has an extensive network of bots not only in the cloud , but also out in the digital wilderness , i . e ., at backbone sites , BGPs , last mile and wireless . It can also place bots inside the provider ’ s site , at headquarters , branch offices , data centers and so on .



“ In my job , I am often presented with reams and reams of data . Data isn ’ t the same thing as an answer . What I really need are answers .”
This means providers have a full perspective of their customers ’ experiences .
Catchpoint takes the massive volume of data it gathers and distills it into insights that lead to answers .
“ We are able to continuously see what kind of user experience our customers will receive from anywhere ,” said Conley . “ This allows us to fix issues before our customers even see the problem .”
Proactively spotting hard-to-find issues
The value of Catchpoint ’ s pervasive synthetic monitoring is illustrated in a recent episode at Cox .
“ We had a situation where we were sharing loads between two data centers ,” said Conley . “ Catchpoint alerted us to an intermittent slowdown , but we had to figure out what was causing the issue .”
Cox Automotive quickly found that these issues were all coming from one of several data centers that shares its application traffic . One of the data centers had an issue with its local service provider , while the other data centers were fine .
Cox was able to route all traffic from that data center ’ s faulty service provider to the other , healthy data centers and user experience issues stopped . Cox was able to solve the carrier issue at their leisure , confident that their users were unaffected .
“ For example , imagine looking at raw data showing user experience data from our Terre Haute site ,” said Conley .
“ Would you be able to know whether that performance was excellent , merely adequate or abysmal ?
“ Now imagine seeing that same data , but in comparison to the ‘ normal ’ performance , best-ever performance and worst performance . Now you would have the context that allows you to quickly decide if there is a problem or not .
“ One thing I love seeing is Catchpoint ’ s BGP monitoring . I see precisely how my customers are routing through the digital wilderness to get to our applications . Even better , I can see when changes to that routing take place and how that impacts user experience .”
Keeping the customer front and center
For Cox Automotive , customer experience is the most important metric they monitor . Catchpoint helps them capture – and ultimately optimize – that experience . p
“ With most synthetic monitoring solutions who base their bots in the cloud , we would have been blind to this issue ,” said Conley .
Data or answers ?
“ Becoming aware of issues quickly , i . e ., before they impact our users , is important . But being able to find what is causing the issue is just as important .
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