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Agentless Infrastructure Auto-Discovery for Modern IT Operations

As the IT environment is becoming very complex with the introduction of new technology such as hybrid Cloud containers, microservices, SDN and NFV, the IT Operations team is challenged with the lack of visibility in today’s entities. FixStream addresses this problem by providing an auto-discovery solution that is agentless and is highly scalable. It can discover up to 2000 entities within approximately 30 minutes time window. In order for the discover to begin there are two input that the user has to provide. One is the service account which is a set of read-only accounts that has access to and talk to the devices and collect data using protocol such as SNMP, SSH, Telnet, Windows using WMI on Power Shell, and varieties of API best data discovery that is done by connecting with the APIs for the orchestrator some controller such as EMC Navisphere, VMware vCenter, Usage Manager, so on and so forth.  Likewise the cloud technologies are being discovered simply by connecting with APIs such as OpenStack, AWS and Azure. Now the other piece of information that you need to provide to define the boundary of the discovery is an IP address range or a list of subnet, FQDN for example. The frequency at which the discovery is done is highly customizable by the end-user based based on the type of environment they have. Once the discovery process is set up and complete, the first thing of the discovery process provides is a full blown inventory of your environment. Whereby every compute network and device are auto-discovered by the discovery process. And it is represented in IP Address view by subnets. So for example if I select this particular subnet you see the corresponding entities quickly represented in subnet by subnet.

For example, if i take my mouse to this particular device this is a Aristata Switch and you can see all the details about it. Likewise when I bring my mouse to this particular entity, this is a Cisco Switch. Similarly, if you take a mouse to a different dot, it shows you a computer device managed by OpenStack. You can also go to different information by simply selecting the filter on the left hand side. For example, if I select container, very quickly it will show you all hosts where containers are deployed and by taking my mouse over to the dot it will show all the details about them. Including all the docker services running, the model, the vendor, the host, and IP address. The same information is also presented in device view which is categorized based on device type and device subtype. In our US data center we have this many number of devices which are categorized by compute network and storage and further broken down by the device subtype. For example, the compute has these many VMs, hypervisor, servers, and docker containers. Whereas, network is further categorized by the virtual and the physical network device subtype. Including vSwitch, physical switches, gateways, HSRP with the network, excetera. Similarly, storage is categorized by datastore, disk, volume, lun, controller, port, and so on and so forth. There is a tabular view that shows every entity the discovery process discovered, every information that it collects. And, you can further also customize your view simply by going to the column tab and then selecting or unselecting any specific column that you either want to add or remove from this view. We also have a connector which measures CMDBs like ServiceNow where by we’re ingesting this data real time into the ITSM CMDB to further elevate the usefulness of the ITSM activities. For example, asset management, incident management, and change management. Once the data is stored and it is correlated in the backed data, there are many use cases the customer can derive from there.  For example, there is a device group view that allow the customer to build device group that is very very useful for operational activities which are specific to do.

You can go to the manage group tab and you can, let’s say for example, you can create a device group all unit devices by going to the device type and using the and/or expression you can say Network and you can say the vendor equal to a Cisco or Juniper. And, you can give it your name. That device group becomes another filtering and filter entity across all the screens, all the different visualizations that the platform provides for you. There is another very useful piece of the platform that it provides for you, it’s the data explorer view. This is very, very powerful for auditing and compliance and Reporting sort of activities. For example, if I want to build a compliance report for every vendors and every voice and number in this compute network storage because I want to find out any out of compliance, out of support sort of scenario. I simply go here and click on device type, and host name, and platform, and vendor, and version, and click submit. And, very quickly you can see by different device type, by vendor, what are the different version number that I have deployed across my entire hybrid environment at a single place that allows you to quickly go through the analysis to quickly identify out of compliance, out of support scenarios so I can have a very meaningful conversation with my vendors.

So in summary, the auto-discovery process of FixStream AIOps platform gives you the single-pane-of-glass view, the single source of Truth for you to be able to do a lot of automation around how you do your daily personal activities including troubleshooting, compliance, planning, and management. Thank you

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