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Microservices / Software Development

The Keynotes from New Relic: Modern Visibility with Distributed Tracing

Sep 11th, 2018 12:15pm by
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The Keynotes from New Relic: Modern Visibility with Distributed Tracing

On this episode of The New Stack Makers, TNS founder and editor-in-chief Alex Williams was on-site at the New Relic offices in Portland, Oregon for a preview of the FutureStack 2018 conference keynotes and learn more about New Relic’s approach to distributed tracing from New Relic SVP of Product Management, Aaron Johnson.

Launching the conversation, Williams dove into New Relic’s takeaways from FutureStack: “We can start with our focus on modern. We define modern as: Cloud, containers, microservices, serverless, and DevOps,” said Johnson. Highlighting the “lightning rod” that containers have become, Johnson explained that the creation and option of DevOps combined to create a “seismic event” when brought together, leading to many companies that were not previously focused on software becoming software companies first, transforming their businesses with these technologies.

Touching on New Relic’s founding story, Johnson noted that at the start, APM was not widely available. New Relic began with the goal to “democratize APM,” and make it available to the masses. Distributed tracing comes into play when an organization moved to microservices and begins breaking down their monolith. “When you do that, what happens is what used to be a really deep transaction trace that you would have seen with New Relic turns into something you need to visualize across many, many systems and you need to be able to see how these systems are connected together. Likely, a lot of the performance problems come from inside the network or between these different layers. For us, distributed tracing as you move to containers and microservices is an incredibly important tool. That’s one of the announcements we’re going to be making at FutureStack.”

Another hot topic of discussion was service mesh, with Johnson highlighting news surrounding New Relic and Istio. “There’s two parts to it. We’re going to be announcing or summing up our user-run Kubernetes. Kubernetes has cemented itself as the de-facto standard for anybody that’s deploying containers. For us, having a really deep and well thought out monitoring solution for Kubernetes was a must-have,” said Johnson, noting that IBM is making use of New Relic’s Kubernetes integration to run over 5,000 pods, adding that, “They used our extensible platform to build an Istio integration on top of New Relic that combines their data from infrastructure with their containers, and with the Kubernetes integration built out some really great visualisations for Istio in particular.” which they will be demonstrating onstage at FutureStack.

In this Edition:

5:20: The concept of “failing faster.”
9:36: When does distributed tracing become a part of the story and how do you think. about cloud-native architectures in this context?
11:01: What are the distinctions offered in this app-centric approach?
13:50: The news surrounding New Relic and Istio.
17:04: How you think about the need to be cognizant of services themselves as opposed to the application?
21:43: Exploring the problem of alert fatigue.

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TNS owner Insight Partners is an investor in: Pragma, The New Stack.
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