Dynatrace 2020

Highlights Dynatrace Perform 2020 Las Vegas

20 March 2020


Our colleague and Dynatrace expert Bert Van der Heyden crossed the ocean to attend Dynatrace Perform 2020 in Las Vegas. It was an interesting adventure with lots of takeaways sure to appeal to Dynatrace lovers. Bert has put together a list of his personal highlights of the event.

There are a lot of events these days and I already know the great story of Dynatrace. So why did I go to Las Vegas? Well, there are a couple of reasons. 

Number 1: training

I subscribed for a full learning pass, which gave me access to four Hot Day sessions of four hours each. I chose a couple advanced sessions that interested me and must admit that I learned a few new things. The fact that these sessions are given by the Dynatrace experts and product managers that actually drive these functionalities make it very interesting. You learn a thing or two, hands-on, and  the near future roadmap is revealed.

But the direct interaction with the product managers is certainly a win-win. They are always very interested in how the product is used by their customers and adapt the Dynatrace roadmap accordingly. So yes, I do have the feeling that I have some influence on the roadmap. Posting RFE’s (Request for Enhancement) on the Dynatrace forum is one thing and works very well. A direct line with the product managers who know you personally and know which beer you like is certainly an advantage. 

Overview of the sessions I followed

  • Providing Dynatrace Managed as a service to your teams 
  • Advanced browser path synthetics and HTTP testing 
  • Advanced Log Analytics 
  • Automated Operations, Smart Auto-Remediation and Self-Healing 
Dynatrace 2020
Dynatrace 2020

Number 2: Certification

Yes, I was already a Certified Dynatrace Professional in 2018 but you need to redo the challenging exams after two years, so this was the perfect occasion. The full learning pass includes the right to free proctored, professional exams, both the theoretical and practical parts. Those kept me busy for a while. As long as I was there anyway, I also did the associate again. 

Yes, I know, certifications don’t say it all, but the pins you get are cool and the number of professional certified partners is not that high. So, yes, I am proud of that title. I am even more proud of my colleague Koen, who also reached Dynatrace Certified Professional status.

Number 3: Famous Belgians

I cannot claim that it was a Belgian invasion in Vegas, but Belgium is fertile ground for Dynatrace. Not only is Belgium the birth place of some great Dynatrace talents like Kristof Renders, Pieter Van Heck and Ahmed El-Jafoufi, but there are also a couple of leading Belgian companies using Dynatrace and driving their businesses forward. Both KBC (Thomas Rotté) as well as Colruyt (Wim Desmecht) were on stage for a couple of great breakout sessions covering the edges of Real User Monitoring within native mobile apps (KBC) right down to end-to-end monitoring and tracing within the IBM mainframe (Colruyt). 

Dynatrace 2020

Number 4: Announcements 

Realdolmen is a Dynatrace partner because they are the best in what they do and lead the market in many ways. The Perform event is very much about revealing the short-term roadmap and longer-term vision of Dynatrace, ensuring that they remain the absolute leader and go even farther. 

Spectacular new feature announcements:

1. Extended Kubernetes support for full stack observability and more precise, AI-powered answers 

Kubernetes adoption is growing exponentially these days. All the big cloud vendors offer flavors of cloud-native platforms based on Kubernetes: AKS, EKS, GKE, Openshift, PKS and so on. Dynatrace OneAgent has always supported Kubernetes extremely well, e.g., OneAgent being deployed via a Kubernetes operator, etc. There is auto injection in every process in every container automatically.  
But now also the ins and outs of the Kubernetes platform itself will be fed into the DAVIS AI engine, resulting in better AI-driven solutions.   

2. Next generation of Dynatrace infrastructure monitoring 

Dynatrace can currently monitor a dozen of the most used AWS services based on metrics, and does about the same for Azure. From Q2 onwards Dynatrace will support ALL services on both AWS and Azure using a generic approach. So again, the future is assured.

In addition, Dynatrace will improve the “infrastructure-only” mode on the OneAgents, adding more important process metrics without the need for code-level visibility.

Furthermore,  the new custom metric system will now support log monitoring metrics which you can define yourself. It will be possible to add custom alerts, although it won’t be required to so, since DAVIS AI will take these metrics into account during root-cause analysis of problems. 

3. Enhanced ai-powered solutions for native mobile apps 

Native mobile apps are used more than ever and by our customers. We see that mobile traffic often exceeds the web applications traffic. Dynatrace has always been great at monitoring the real user transactions within native and hybrid mobile apps, looking at the end-user perspective and correlating it the whole way through the backend. 

Dynatrace now showed enhanced views on mobile app crashes, making it very easy to dig into client side exceptions and examine problems. But of course, there is always DAVIS to do that job for you, too. 

4. Business KPI anomaly detection and analysis to drive better user experience and business outcome 

Aside from all the technical KPI’s and audiences, business KPIs will become more important in the future as well. By setting KPI’s on business metrics, the DAVIS AI engine can also generate a problem when it detects out-of-the-ordinary deviations.

Dynatrace also announced better Adobe Analytics integration. Often business people use tools like Adobe Analytics and by correlating these two worlds people can speak the same language. Actually, this was also one of the breakout sessions of KBC, who had implemented this integration already. 

Number 5: The man himself

Astonishing vision

Bernd Greifeneder, CTO and founder of Dynatrace, is a true visionary, and I was really excited to find out what he would pull out of his hat this time. He did not disappoint. 

  • Since Dynatrace is a single-product company and the platform is expanding, there are more and more different audiences using the Dynatrace solution. The plan is to divide the user interface in sections for each audience. It still is all about sharing the same information, but the typical marketing or business user has other needs than the Kubernetes platform owner for example. 
  • Keptn, the open source, event driven, control plane for continuous delivery and automated operations for cloud-native applications, which is powered by Dynatrace, will also be integrated into the platform as a supported component. The open-source upstream project will still remain, of course. So, they will use a RedHat like model here. 
  • Also the famous smartscape, holding all entities in a full-stack and end-to-end view, will be upgraded to a 3D view. The mockups already looked amazing. 
  • Dynatrace itselfwent from a DevOps to NoOps company. Now they will be focusing on security as well and be sure they will disrupt this area as well. With a “NoSoc” mantra they have everything it takes to pinpoint the real vulnerabilities in a complex environment.  
  • Bernd also did a demo with some extended language residing inside Dynatrace, on which users can create their own “apps” and eventually even publish them on a MarketPlace. The example was about linking users with a certain loyalty status who were impacted by bad performance with salesforce. 
  • Finally, it started to go crazy when he announced that they are going to work on their own Hypergraph datastore. Currently Dynatrace already scales enormously with the ability of monitoring 50,000 hosts on one cluster. But they are reaching the limitations of the different datastores they use (timeseries, graph, events, relational, meta-data and files). The only way to go forward is by creating a “Hypergraph unique unified AI storage” addressing custom use cases and 1000x ingest scalability. 

Although this is a longer-term vision and not 100% confirmed, we know that Dynatrace has the reputation of keeping its promises.  

Number 6: The energy

… which leads immediately to the organization of our next BeNeLux Dynatrace User Group event.

For a few years we have regularly organized this User Group for the BeNeLux Dynatrace community at several customer locations. We were looking for a good theme for our next event. In Las Vegas, off all places, I bumped into Andreas Grabner (Dynatrace), who calls himself a “DevOps Activist”. For a year or so, he has really been into promoting Keptn (pronounced like captain), which is “an event-based control plane for continuous delivery and automated operations for cloud-native applications”.

I have been following Keptn for a while now since it is spot-on for our Realdolmen BizDevOps Services organization, enabling automated Quality Gates into pipelines and even Self Healing. So I had to ask following question: “Andi, would you like to come to Belgium as a speaker for our user group?”. Answer: “Yes sure, would the 14th of May fit?”. And the rest is history.

Now let’s hope that the Corona Virus is out of the country and the world by May 14!

Dynatrace 2020

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