Galileo Performance Explorer: Predictive Planning Not Reactive Alarms

CIO VendorTim Conley and Chris Churchey, Co-Founders As a receptionist at a prominent retail outlet, Pepper takes his job very seriously. He is well versed in 20 different languages, ensures that customer queries are answered in no time, and if a particular shopper is having a bad day, he even goes to the extent of singing a song to lift their spirits. With his endearing, sensitive, and witty qualities, Pepper is not only every employer’s dream come true, but also a humanoid robot powered by IBM’s cloud based Artificial Intelligence (AI) system. Famed as the world's first robot with human emotions, Pepper is the unrivalled example of how IBM is achieving the inconceivable by collaborating cognitive computing and cloud technology. “However, amid such advancements, all companies are challenged day to day by which applications to move to the cloud and how to manage the performance monitoring around it,” states Tim Conley, Co-Founder of Galileo Performance Explorer, a division of the ATS Group who is an IT infrastructure consultancy. Most importantly, CIOs are in a constant challenge when it comes to monitoring the performance, capacity, configuration, and assets, spread across the world of cloud or across a distributed on premise/cloud/ hybrid environment. Since most cloud environments today are distributed and involve multiple network tiers, visibility across the tiers poses a pertinent challenge.

When a user complains of an application slowdown, it is hard to determine whether the bottleneck lies in the cloud, application, or database. In such a scenario, spearheading a compelling new approach in IT utilization and capacity planning, Galileo Performance Explorer emerges as a cloud-based Infrastructure Performance Monitoring (IPM) tool that provides analytical perspectives for server, storage, Storage Area Network (SAN) and hardware virtualization environments. Developed by the ATS Group before cloud became a buzzword, Galileo was the first IPM cloud service and today is the only complete cloud solution with a unified platform. Built on an innovative Software as Service (SaaS) architecture, Galileo provides “single pane of glass” analytics, which helps align IT technology to business objectives, and installs within minutes—negating expensive hardware requirements.

Performance Always Matters

Since complex IT environments render performance management as a difficult and expensive task, the need is a single solution that empowers better decision-making and intelligent predictive analytics to inform and pinpoint potential problems before they occur. Unlike reactive performance monitoring tools that inform after an overload occurs, Galileo Performance Explorer is designed for proactive system management where accurate predicting simplifies planning for future capacity needs. To save time and quickly identify vital assets, Galileo provides configuration management tools that help access device information, configuration changes, and code levels. Galileo is agnostic in their support of storage and servers and supports all IBM storage and power servers as well as a broad range of other storage and servers. Galileo excels in delivering deep insights to multi-vendor IBM customers as well as distributed cloud providers.

Unlike reactive performance-monitoring tools that inform in case of an overload, Galileo Performance Explorer is designed for proactive system management to prevent them from happening in the first place

The solution identifies Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and actionable data, which are projected through IT Intelligence Dashboards for Enterprise and Analytics. Users can foresee and prevent downtime and monitor health across their data centers—from operating system problems to storage concerns—with user-defined parameters and enhanced reporting. The performance reports generated are also customizable, allowing a client to shape data views according to a business unit or technology needs. “While it’s fairly easy to develop an agent that collects data from a source, it is another thing all together to drive human intelligence and provide a human interaction dashboard that’s completely intuitive,” states Chris Churchey, Co-Founder of Galileo. Whether a customer’s IT environment consists of physical or virtual data centers, with Galileo, access to server, storage and SAN performance, configuration and capacity information is available in seconds. Since security is a chief concern with cloud, Galileo does not transfer or store Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and transmits only data related to IT data center performance.

Performance Management Case Study

When Welch’s, a renowned manufacturer known for juices, jams, and jellies, located in Massachusetts, wanted to opt for a proactive approach to performance management, they turned to Galileo Performance Explorer. Since Welch’s single IT department serves the entire organization—from manufacturing and supply chain to finance—any slowdown in the system would disrupt the entire organization flow. After implementing Galileo, Welch’s could easily identify factors that hindered CPU usage, paging, disk service time, and storage performance. “With KPIs readily available, personnel can now better deal with potential threats, and the ownership of infrastructure performance is transferred to the right person at the right time,” says Churchey. Ultimately, Welch’s optimized its systems and operated less expensive and right-sized hardware, storage, and CPU allocation with greater efficiency. “In addition, as the company incorporated cloud resources, they cut weeks of planning, licensing requirements, and 20 percent of workload,” says Conley.

Innovation Every Step of the Way

Galileo maintains a number of relationships and solutions with vendors across a wide spectrum including Microsoft, Linux, Solaris, VMware, Brocade, NetApp, Cisco as well as IBM. To ensure that IBM products are used to the best of its advantage, Galileo has a team of more than 60 infrastructure-monitoring specialists that work extensively in the IBM ecosystem as well as many others. “We have an IBM Solutions Center that is configured with the latest generation IBM hardware assets and software solutions capabilities,” explains Churchey.

"We have an IBM Solutions Center which is configured with the latest generation IBM hardware assets and software solutions capabilities as well as those from a wide spectrum of other vendors"

The center houses IBM servers, SAN, and storage portfolios. The company executes demos, Proof of Concepts (POCs), and testing, helping build state-of-the-art software solutions across a broad spectrum of technologies besides IBM. “We believe in monitoring market requirements and our passion for IPM and customer success drives Galileo Performance Explorer to be the one-stop-shop for not only expert software solutions, but human expertise as well,” adds Conley.

In one instance, a long time Galileo user and an IBM customer wanted to move all their non-production x86 computers and IBM Power servers to two different cloud providers. With Galileo Performance Explorer, the customer could chart the performance differences between multiple vendors. “Also our solution enabled a comparative analysis of whether the shift from on premise to cloud was for the better or for worse, with regards to performance,” points out Churchey. Moreover, Galileo Performance Explorer was also used for Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and exhibited the customer resources consumed in the cloud, the trends, projected growth, and actionable insight for making cost-effective decisions.

Exploring New Horizons in Performance Management

In the near future, Galileo will enhance its vendor agnostic servers, storage, SAN and application performance, configuration monitoring, and reporting. The company plans on expanding its support to IBM and other vendors with a focus on improved return on investment for clients of a wide variety of other storage, server and SAN platforms. Facilitating continuous improvement with integrated analytics, the firm also envisions advancing their enterprise dashboards and asset tagging for wider reporting and analytics. “On a cultural front, we will pursue our search for the best and brightest thinkers and engineers in the industry, as the success of Galileo depends on the quality of people,” says Conley. As the data center complexity outpaces organizational budgets, a single tool like Galileo Performance Explorer, truly emerges as the go-to choice for maximum optimization and revolutionary virtualization management. Backed by data center experts and their deep knowledge across a broad spectrum of solutions including IBM solutions, Galileo Performance Explorer is a rock-solid platform that will continue to deliver unprecedented performance in the years to come.