application performance monitoring (APM)

Contributor(s): Eugene Demaitre, Mark Brunelli
This definition is part of our Essential Guide: Develop a solid virtualization capacity planning strategy

Application performance monitoring (APM) is an area of information technology (IT) that focuses on making sure software application programs perform as expected. The goal of performance monitoring is to provide end users with a quality end-user experience.

Application monitoring tools provide administrators with the data they need to quickly discover, isolate and solve problems that negatively impact an application's performance. Such tools can be specific to a particular application or monitor multiple applications on the same network, collecting data about client CPU utilization, memory demands, data throughput and bandwidth

One of the most important steps in any application performance monitoring initiative is combining data from disparate monitoring "silos" into a correlation engine and dashboard. The dashboard makes data logs easier to read and saves IT staff from memory-dependent and error-prone manual correlation and analysis.

In virtualized environments, application monitoring software helps administrators watch application servers so that they comply with service-level agreements (SLAs). Business rules can be set to alert an administrator when there is a problem, assuring that business-critical applications and functions are given priority. 

The monitoring of resources that support application program performance in private and hybrid cloud environments is called cloud application performance management (CAPM). The change to a more distributed network architecture in the cloud has inspired vendors to increase the performance monitoring capabilities of networked applications.


This was last updated in December 2013

Next Steps

Application performance monitoring and management software helps organizations and businesses collect and monitor data on all fronts of an app's performance. Before searching for the right APM tool, make sure you need APM software first by researching some APM software use cases. If the use cases reveal a need for APM, know that not all APM tools are built equally. But there are key features and functions that every APM tool should provide that can help you make that decision. Matching those key features up with your organization's business needs is the next step in deciding which APM software is right for your company. There are an array of APM tools out there that fit a multitude of business needs: AppDynamics, AppNeta, HPE's AppPulse, BMC's TrueSight, Dynatrace, SAP's Extended Diagnostics by CA, Dell's Foglight, New Relic APM, Sensu and Riverbed's SteelCentral.

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What are the web application monitoring can you name? what one are conidered to be the most reliable ones?I am using Anturis, but i would like to comapare it with other variants.
Great post! Really interesting. You can see a comparison of many of the applications you have mentioned on IT Central Station. CA APM is the most viewed solution by our users.

This Systems Engineer wrote: "We evaluated several products: solutions from BMC and Microsoft were evaluated but fell short of our total monitoring needs. In the end, in choosing CA APM, our ROI has been high and it has allowed us to adjust applications to perform better, thus reducing our need to install high-end servers".

You can read the rest of his review, plus those of other solutions here:
Application Performance Management (APM) Solutions allow you to isolate problems real-time for all of your applications whether on-premise, cloud, or mobile.


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