Despite the preventative measures implemented by IT departments, it will happen at some point: servers will go down and outages will occur. But even if an organization cannot prevent these issues from occurring, the impact can still be minimized through the use of information gathered by server monitoring services. What exactly is server monitoring? Basic functions include:
- Tracking CPU usage, memory, and disk usage
- Monitoring the performance and availability of all critical systems and applications
- Monitoring internal workflow to avoid bottlenecks and ensure efficiency
- Determining where the issues lie and address them before it is too late
- Configuring thresholds and broadcast notifications when these thresholds have been crossed
An organization can monitor their server details using SaaS server monitoring or a managed service. Even though they both have a similar end result (ideally), there are several differences between them that can determine which option is better for a business.
A managed service provider provides a software license for each application they are required to run and are responsible for running the software, maintaining it, and installing any necessary upgrades. This model places day-to-day operations with another organization, and thereby creates a strategic method for streamlined, efficient, and affordable operations.
With SaaS server monitoring, the cost for a SaaS application can often be much less than for a managed service application. However, an organization will be charged for the configuration, maintenance and support, seamless upgrades, and customization that a managed service provider generally offers inclusively. A SaaS supplier hosts, maintains, and upgrades its software on its own servers while an organization's employees access it through the Internet. Managed service providers allow for a more comprehensive and flexible operation of business functions, such as security and network monitoring.
Because SaaS applications are not necessarily sold as a software package that an IT department can download or purchase, a business cannot buy a license or or pay for upgrades. Instead, an organization will pay a flat, regularly scheduled, subscription fee. The software resides on the host server from which all users — no matter their organization or where they are located — can access it. The cost is therefore spread across many clients.
Even though SaaS applications can be modified in minor ways — for example, companies can often make changes to how the application is shown and used on a desktop — the code itself cannot be customized for a business and their specific and unique needs, as can be done through a managed service provider.
Finally, an managed service provider (MSP) can provide additional services that SaaS server monitoring cannot, such as troubleshooting issues, providing data backup and storage, and offering server upgrade information. This can leave an IT department available to work on their own tasks and projects.
When weighing one set of server management services against the other, a business will need to consider how integral the software required is to your organization. Make sure that business-critical operational issues are acknowledged and addressed, including exceptions and multiple sources of information.
Want more information on server monitoring? Or even if investing in IT is worth it for your business?