New Monitoring platform

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New Monitoring platform

Postby Alex » Thu Oct 24, 2013 10:37 am

In the coming weeks we will be migrating our Monitoring service to a new infrastructure based on the very latest hardware and a greatly improved database engine.

We’re doing this because the current Monitoring platform is reaching the end of its projected life cycle. At the same time our capacity management programme has identified that we are approaching the physical limits of computing power and storage possible with the current infrastructure.

This migration will increase the reliability and stability of the Monitoring platform, as well as greatly increasing our capacity and throughput. Some customers with exceptionally rich sites may notice a small decrease in page processing time, which is an artefact of the increased processing power of the new test agents. However, we are testing all customer data, and if your results are significantly affected, rest assured that we will bring this to your attention before the change. To enable us to perform this testing, we will be performing a period of "dual running" in which we will operate the new platform simultaneously with the current platform.

The go-live date of the new platform is scheduled for the last week of November 2013, with further details to follow. As our testing progresses, we will issue two further updates. The first will detail the changes to IP address ranges that our test agents will use. The second will describe the exact timing and detail of the migration.

The testing phase will consist of two 90 minute periods during which we will be testing from our existing and new platforms simultaneously. These periods will be 10:00 to 11:30 GMT on 30/10/13 and 14:00 to 15:30 GMT on 30/10/13. Whilst the existing Monitoring platform should be considered at risk during this time, your service will continue as normal. Any activity on the new platform is purely for testing purposes and will not be visible to you.
Alex
NCC Group Employee
NCC Group Employee
 
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Re: New Monitoring platform

Postby Alex » Wed Nov 06, 2013 11:59 am

We would like to thank all Monitoring customers for taking part in the first successful test of our new Monitoring platform on 30 October. We operated both new and existing infrastructures simultaneously in this first test phase for two 90 minute periods at full load and now have a high level of confidence in the new platform's performance and stability.

We are now in a position to declare the new IP address ranges from which your Monitoring test traffic will originate once the new infrastructure is in full production. If this affects you, you should have received an email with a list of IP ranges (please contact your account manager if you have not yet received it).

In order to make the transition to the new platform as smooth as possible, please ensure that you add the ranges to those that are already assigned to our Monitoring activities on your firewalls, load balancers, security systems, third party suppliers, web analytics, etc. Please DO NOT delete any of the existing ranges until we advise, after the migration.

We will also be performing a second phase of testing on Monday 18 November. As before, this testing phase will consist of two 90 minute periods during which we will be testing from both our existing and new platforms simultaneously. These periods will be 10:00 to 11:30 GMT on 18/11/13 and 14:00 to 15:30 GMT on 18/11/13. Whilst the existing Monitoring platform should be considered at risk during this time, your service will continue as normal: any activity on the new platform is purely for testing purposes and will not be visible to you. Part of the reason for this second test phase is to identify any customers who appear not to have implemented firewall changes to accommodate the new IP address ranges above.

Thank you for your patience while we prepare for this significant upgrade. Your account manager will be happy to assist with any queries regarding this work.
Alex
NCC Group Employee
NCC Group Employee
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Oct 23, 2013 5:12 pm

Re: New Monitoring platform

Postby Alex » Wed Nov 20, 2013 6:30 pm

We would like to thank all Monitoring customers for taking part in the second and final round of testing on our new infrastructure. We are pleased to report that the test was a success and are now in a position to announce the detailed plan for migration to the new platform on Wednesday 27 November.

As previously stated, we are confident that this migration will not affect the accuracy of your results. Instead, we expect the new platform to increase the reliability and stability of our Monitoring product. Some customers with exceptionally content-rich sites may notice a small decrease in page processing time, which is an artefact of the increased processing power of the new testing servers. We have performed extensive analysis of customer test results following the four dual running periods and will notify any customers whose results are likely to be affected in this way.

We have done all we can to ensure that migration to the new platform has the lowest possible level of customer impact. However, please note that there will be a short period during which the Monitoring service will be unavailable and there will be no testing of your site. In addition, our Load Testing and Performance Analyser products will also be affected because they share the same authentication infrastructure.

Monitoring Portal, XML feeds and the Interactive Dashboard

Please note that from 06:30 to 07:05 the Monitoring Portal, XML feeds and Interactive Dashboard will not be available. After this period, the Monitoring Portal will return and users can login to view your data (note: there will be a period without test data whilst the monitoring activity is migrated to the new platform). Interactive Dashboard users will need to login and restart the Dashboard to see results. Interactive Dashboard personal preferences will be maintained, as these are stored locally on the browsing device.

Migration schedule

06:30 – Customer portal, API and Interactive Dashboard unavailable. Load Testing and Performance Analyser portals also unavailable
06:40 – Monitoring test activity STOPS on the current platform
07:00 – Monitoring test activity STARTS on the new platform
07:05 – Customer portal, API and Interactive Dashboard available again
07:10 – SMS, email and voice alerting available again
07:30 – Load Testing and Performance Analyser products available again
08:00 – International Monitoring data starts to appear in portal again with the exception of London, including all results from 06:30
09:30 – International Monitoring data from London starts to appear in portal
09:30 – Migration ends

We would like to thank all of our customers once again for their patience, and we appreciate that any maintenance on our services at this time of year can be challenging for some. We have therefore spoken to a number of customers about the best way to minimise the impact, both in terms of service outage and the timing of the maintenance window itself. However, if you have any queries regarding this work, please don’t hesitate to contact your account manager, who will be happy to help.
Alex
NCC Group Employee
NCC Group Employee
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Oct 23, 2013 5:12 pm

Re: New Monitoring platform

Postby Alex » Wed Nov 27, 2013 12:47 pm

We are very pleased to report that we have completed the migration to our new Monitoring platform in line with the previously communicated plan.

We would like to thank all of our customers once again for their patience whilst we performed this necessary service maintenance. If you identify any issues with your service or have any questions related to this update please contact Customer Support or your Account Manager who will be very pleased to offer any assistance.

Follow-up work

On Thursday 28 and Friday 29 November, we will be performing some limited Business Continuity testing of the new platform. We do not anticipate any impact to customers, but the Monitoring service should be considered at risk from 09:00 to 17:30 on both days.
Alex
NCC Group Employee
NCC Group Employee
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Oct 23, 2013 5:12 pm


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