It’s Tuesday and you are waiting for work colleagues to join you at lunch for a quick reprieve from the office. You pull out your smartphone and begin browsing to pass the time. An interesting technology article catches your eye and you tap to access the page. Unfortunately, the session times out and your engagement with that journey ends prematurely. Does this experience sound familiar?
According to a recent Google study, 53% of mobile users will abandon a session if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load. Fair or not, this is the bar that has been set, and serves as a reminder to enterprises of how important it is to modernize applications. Once users leave you behind, it is difficult to get them back as 79% of participants in the same mentioned study said they will not return after a negative experience.
What Makes an Application Modern Today?
Applications used to consist of one singular block of monolithic interdependent code hosted on a single virtual machine (VM), a design considered innovative in its day. But things are different now. To gain greater agility and flexibility, companies hastily transitioned to microservices and container environments. Here, a single application is broken up into small individual modules where each module performs a single defined task or capability. These services are then coupled together to communicate with one another, creating a highly flexible coalition of services that we call the modern application. Here, all necessary components are then contained within a single container.
Benefits of Application Modernization
Application modernization provides greater flexibility as microservices can be deployed in different programing languages and technologies. Modern applications are far more resilient as containers can be easily migrated or deployed to other systems. Updating is easier as each service can be updated and deployed independently of others and new application features and functionality can be released more rapidly to market. Containers and the microservices they host can be scaled up or down to meet fluctuating workload demands in real time.
The 6 R’s of Application Modernization
So, how do you go about updating monolithic and legacy applications to the modern era? AWS created a set of six best practice strategy options that be applied to any business application you may consider modernizing.
- Retain: Keep the existing application in its present form as it still meets the needs of the organization.
- Refactor: Improve the code and architecture of the existing application to attain greater scalability and flexibility.
- Rehost: Move the existing application to a new infrastructure, such as a cloud platform, without changing its code.
- Replace: Replace the existing application with a pre-built solution or different technology.
- Rebuild: Create a new application from scratch to replace the existing one.
- Retire: Discontinue support for the application and retire it. The application is no longer needed
The Paradox of Application Modernization
The speed, dynamics, and scalability of modernized applications will outpace and out scale traditional management and monitoring tools. While they may have been sufficient for an on-prem legacy environment, their product cycle is ending. If your applications are delivering workloads differently, it only makes sense that they need to be managed differently. It isn’t just programmers who need greater agility to increase the velocity of new feature releases and updates. The application admins need greater speed and agility to ensure application environments are always optimized. If not, they will fail to attain the full benefit potential of modernization efforts, thus diminishing ROI and risking losing users along the way.
Monitoring vs. Observability
Monitoring and observability may sound alike, but one is superior in scope to the other. Monitoring was appropriate for traditional on-prem environments. It helped IT personnel track problems, issues, and performance using a list of prescribed metrics that provided a snapshot of the systems that comprised the application environment.
While sufficient for the application models of yesteryear, monitoring no longer cuts it for today’s cloud application environments. The architecture that interconnects an application’s services and interdependencies together is highly complex and visibility is a challenge. Enter observability.
Observability takes monitoring to the next level by aggregating and analyzing data from multiple sources and uses AI intelligence to put the puzzle pieces together. Observability isn’t restricted to alerts and metrics. It also provides insights and context to your environment so IT can properly understand the issues at hand. While monitoring provides a view into your application environment, observability provides full comprehension and understanding.
Intelligent Observability with Dynatrace and Davis
Meet Davis (short for Davis AI-Powered Detection and Response). Davis is part of the Dynatrace performance monitoring and management solution platform for modern applications and cloud environments. Davis uses AI and ML to identify and prioritize issues and security risks in real-time on its own. Besides delivering comprehensive contextual insights to your support team, the Dynatrace platform automatically remediates issues before users are affected and IT can review them. Don’t just upgrade your applications to the modern era, upgrade your application operational tools in tandem with Dynatrace.
Next Steps: Thanks to Dynatrace, full stack application analytics and observability is fully achievable for your AWS-hosted application environments. Converting terabytes of data about your cloud application environment and converting it to real answers and actionable, intelligent automation, companies can maximize their modernized application strategies. We expand on this in our free tech brief, How Dynatrace and AWS Lead The Effort Of Application Modernization.
In this tech brief, we expand on: