The good news about microservices and distributed systems is that they enable developers to increase agility, scalability, and efficiency for customer-facing applications and critical workloads. But there’s also bad news: debugging and monitoring them is increasingly difficult as infrastructure is abstracted away from the enterprise, and applications span a collection of third-party services, legacy components, business APIs, and modern cloud solutions.
When an incident without a clear root cause arises, you may struggle to locate, diagnose, and solve an issue that could negatively impact multiple application stack layers. As a result, your company risks losing revenue and reputation as digital properties slow or fail.
The ever-expanding number of areas to monitor and react to—hybrid environments, a wider surface area, increased operational data emitted across fragmented tools, and constant alerts—is stretching teams and budgets.
Some companies have adopted dozens of commercial and open source monitoring tools in response. The end goal is better visibility across software and systems, but the array of disconnected solutions—whether for infrastructure, applications, logs, digital experience, and beyond—winds up creating tool sprawl. When this happens, engineers continuously have to switch between solutions to uncover problems, resulting in blind spots, increased toil, and unnecessary challenges, usually during critical moments.
Mounting costs—in both developer time to learn and embrace new tools as well as operating and capital expenses—are also considerations. And while open source tools can seem like opportunities to avoid vendor costs, many organizations still struggle to forecast the ultimate infrastructure and human effort required to maintain and operate these solutions.