Application performance monitoring focuses on measuring performance and availability of your applications, whether they’re monolithic, microservices, mobile, APIs, or a mixture. You may be using metrics-based tools, drilling down in a log management tool, looking more directly at code performance using APM, being notified of specific issues through alerting, understanding service dependencies using distributed tracing, or even examining application performance based on network indicators. If you are responsible for delivering an application that generates revenue, observability is everything to you. It’s not enough just to monitor your application. You also need to instrument your monitoring so you know whether your application is performing as expected and, if not, why. Ideally, you should tune your monitors and alerts so that you know well ahead of time when something has changed in your system that will lead to application performance issues. This enables you to troubleshoot proactively and fix brewing problems before they grow.
As you break up your monolithic applications and deliver more microservices, doing APM right will become critical. Taking advantage of this approach has a ton of benefits for your team and software. By delivering loosely-coupled software services, you can free yourself from having to hire full-stack developers. Instead, you can bring on professionals with skills and knowledge that align with your company’s functional areas. Another advantage is that you can deliver software more rapidly. For all of the benefits of this architectural approach, application performance monitoring can become much more complex if you don’t get ahead of it. Monitoring application performance in a microservices environment means you must handle more moving pieces, it’s more difficult to instrument your monitoring systems, and troubleshooting issues may be more time consuming than with your monolithic application. According to a recent survey, the vast majority of engineers who deliver mostly microservices or push code at least once per day spend over half of their time troubleshooting software issues.