Technology / Sponsored

Raygun APM Makes Finding Performance Bottlenecks Easier, Faster and Cheaper

19 Sep 2018 2:43pm, by

Raygun sponsored this post.

Freyja Spaven
Freyja Spaven is a digital marketing specialist at Raygun, a software intelligence platform that helps development teams create error-free experiences for users.

When you’re building software, there’s so much to think about, but how fast your application loads is mission critical for creating great software experiences for your customers. Do you have complete visibility on what’s happening for each customer whilst they are using your software? Are all your questions around how your application is performing answered right now? Can you identify the root causes of issues in minutes rather than hours? If not, we’ve got something new to help your development team build better, faster, and higher quality software experiences for your users, giving them unparalleled insights into performance problems.

Today, we’re releasing Raygun Application Performance Monitoring (APM), a new way to visualize and understand your application’s performance on the server-side.

All you need to do is install the Raygun Agent, and we’ll help you measure where hidden bottlenecks are in your applications.

This is a big deal for teams of all sizes, offering a single place to diagnose errors and performance issues.

Available for .NET and Azure App Service on launch, followed by .NET Core, and further languages and frameworks.

With players like New Relic, Appdynamics and Dynatrace charging predominantly on a per server model, Raygun has decided to shake things up, by offering monitoring on unlimited servers for all its APM plans. This allows teams with heavy use of containers and microservices to enjoy the benefits of gathering traces from far-reaching parts of their infrastructure, rather than relying on monitoring for a limited number of servers in their stack due to cost reasons.

Raygun APM is billing purely on the amount of data we need to process for your applications, so it’s entirely under your control how costly and how widespread you’d like server-side monitoring to be.

Since Raygun’s error monitoring and real user monitoring products already help thousands of software development teams today, Raygun has taken a developer first approach with APM too, offering a high-level detail into performance metrics but also workflow tools for you to manage resolutions from first detection right through to final fixes deployed to production.

Custom dashboarding also gives managers and stakeholders the flexibility to monitor the key metrics that matter to them most. Your whole team will love using Raygun to keep a watchful eye over how your application is performing in the hands of end users.

What Is APM?

It’s not enough to know that your application is up or down anymore; slowdowns occur 10 times more frequently than crashes, so it’s important to understand why as quickly as possible.

APM tools help you:

  • Understand and drill down into the root cause of any application issue immediately, including the exact line of code, function, database or API call that cause issues;
  • Monitor key metrics such as changes to Apdex scores, measuring performance trends over time on team dashboards
  • Deliver exceptional user experiences as you catch problems before they affect your customers.

Over the years, we’ve received feedback from customers that the current APM landscape is lacking and in need of change.

Firstly, most APM tools lack the context to give meaningful data to developers, making debugging and troubleshooting difficult. Secondly, with the current pricing models, APM tools are inaccessible to companies operating in a modern development environment, such as organizations that use microservices and container platforms.

We built Raygun APM to answer the need for an integrated monitoring solution that provides developers with complete visibility into crashes and performance from the server to end-user. This is all offered in very cost-effective packages for all modern architectures with no overages or host constraints:

  • Startup Platform Plan: US$199 per month
  • Small Business Plan: US$549 per month
  • Business Plan: US$1499 per month
  • Custom Enterprise: Contact sales

“The addition of APM to the Raygun Platform delivers on our vision of a totally integrated monitoring solution. Crashes, real-user performance and server/application monitoring are all in one place, not siloed,” John-Daniel Trask, CEO, and co-founder of Raygun, said. “We’ve been building towards the most integrated monitoring platform for years, re-thinking what could be achieved and support all modern solution architectures.”

How Raygun APM Is Different

We believe Raygun is a breath of fresh air for modern development teams needing an APM solution. Rather than overloading developers with data points, our goal is to provide a developer-friendly product that excels in delivering the necessary details needed to fix problems quickly.

Raygun delivers what other APM tools can’t: an intuitive and easy-to-use interface with unparalleled detail into application performance.

Developers who used APM during our beta phase said that they received better insights with our tools than they were able to do with existing mature platforms such as New Relic, App Insights and App Dynamics and other APM players. Using the details Raygun provided, they were able to gain greater visibility into what’s actually going on in their codebase, and were able to solve problems they previously couldn’t understand with their existing solution.

Example Workflow

Let’s say you are noticing a general slowdown of your application. The metrics you measure your application with seem ok on the surface, nothing out of the ordinary, but a couple of users have reported that the app is feeling slow, and you can feel a general sluggishness to things as you navigate around myself. But you don’t really know if this is a problem, how many people it affects, whether it’s really hurting the wider business or why this might be occurring. You have questions, but few answers.

Given that many issues in web and mobile apps cause poor user experience, but not the application to crash or error entirely, how do you get visibility into what’s actually happening between the application and the server whilst the application is loading? You could really do with X-Ray vision right now and see inside your software, and with Raygun, you can.

Raygun APM offers a complete, full context and visual breakdown of the timeline as the page loads including your code’s execution time, method call, database queries, third-party libraries and external API calls.

For queries, for example, Raygun is able to identify a query that has an N+1 problem, where it is being called 100 times. After looking into the cause, you can see in Raygun it can be optimized to be called just once, reducing the page load time substantially. This vastly improves the user experience my customers are having with my application. Due to the nature of how Raygun presents this information, identifying the root cause took minutes rather than hours because I was shown the full context behind the issue.

 

Traditional APM solutions (if you already have one in place) don’t offer a visual timeline with such granular trace information, and rely on a text-based, call tree view. This is acceptable for teams needing only to be pointed in the right direction of where an issue lies, but often fails to give you the answer you need. Raygun gives you the needle rather than the haystack so to speak when digging into hard to solve performance problems.

Here’s how Raygun  stacks up with today’s APM landscape:

Innovative Pricing

Innovative usage-based pricing means you can deliver cost-effective APM across your whole stack — whether it a microservices architecture or single large monolith.

Easy Installation

With our free 14-day trial and easy installation process, you can get data flowing in as little as two minutes.

Developer-Friendly UI

With Raygun APM, the information you need to debug and diagnose problems is never more than a few clicks away. The core of APM is our flame chart, which displays a visual timeline of traces, helping make it simple to identify areas for improvement in the future and highlight issues in seconds.

Unrivaled insights

Raygun excels in capturing the rich details teams need to diagnose problems. Several of our customers have already been able to surface detailed information relating to a specific request because they have access to every detail available needed to do so.

The easy-to-interpret diagnostic reports are especially important, Eric Fernandez, CEO and co-founder of Linbis Logistics Software, said.

“Raygun’s tracing, along with flame charts, make it very clear where the problems are located,” Fernandez said. “This saves a lot of time for everyone.”

Everything in One Place

Correlate server-side timings with errors, crashes and front-end performance with the Raygun Platform.

Features and Integrations Available Today

Raygun APM works with your development environment and already has all of the features you need to diagnose issues quickly, such as:

  • Detailed transaction tracing;
  • Dashboards;
  • User Experience reporting;
  • Real User Monitoring.

Integrations are available on launch, too, including:

  • GitHub;
  • Slack;
  • Jira;
  • PagerDuty

(For more details head to our integration documentation.)

What the Future Holds for Raygun APM

In the coming months, we will add more integrations and features to the Raygun Platform.

While Raygun APM already has a mature real user monitoring product, our near-term goal is to continue to add more features that help achieve specific business metrics. Expect features like custom reporting, deployment tracking, focused dashboarding, high-level metrics and service discovery.

Learn more about Raygun Application Performance Monitoring

We’re excited to help development teams work better together, and we’d love to hear what you think, just get in touch.

Feature image: Raygun co-founders Jeremy Boyd (left) and John-Daniel Trask (right)


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