The Twelve Days of Christmas from HIPPO: No. 8 – Interactive Investigation!
Interactive Data Visualisation is a hot topic right now so can we use it to analyse the multiple factors which affect Informatica performance?
Data Visualisation is a technique that has actually been around for a long time. Perhaps the most famous data visualisation is of Napoleon’s infamous march on Moscow produced by Charles Minard in the early 1800’s. What is so great about this visualisation is that it combines the four key elements of the story in one easily understood chart: the dates (a timeline), geography (the army’s route), the huge loss of life and the massive temperature variation. It is clear that all four elements must be on the same chart to convey the whole story.
Is there a lesson there for those of us involved with Informatica?
Well, we were presenting HIPPO to the Informatica staff at a large bank recently. They really liked HIPPO but they felt that a great addition would be an overlay of the four key elements of an Informatica batch run on the same graph. Sure, the information was already in HIPPO, but wouldn’t it be great if you could combine these key elements into a single chart and make it interactive: adding and subtracting the key elements, as you need.
It was such a great idea that we just had to run with it!
This new data visualisation in HIPPO will combine Time, CPU usage, Memory Usage and Workflow activity in a single interactive chart. This means that when you need to know why your workflow overran, or missed its SLA, then you can quickly build a picture of what was going on when your Workflow executed. Start by selecting your timeframe, then overlay the graph with all of the workflows running in contention with yours, then overlay CPU usage to assess availability during this timeframe and finally overlay Memory usage.
In a few mouse clicks you’ll understand if factors outwith your workflow such as resource shortfall or workflow contention caused the performance dip. In many cases you will have your answer right there; but if not then you can use HIPPO to drill down to what was happening inside your workflow: were data volumes unusually high? Is the target database the issue? And so on.
It has been a busy few weeks in the HIPPO workshop turning this great idea from the audience at the bank into a late Christmas present for our customers. So why don’t you benefit from their suggestion too? Take a look at HIPPO in 2012 and get a faster way to solve those performance problems.
Footnote: the latest version of HIPPO has just gone on general release and it is packed with new and unique features to manage, optimize and control your Informatica environment. In the run up to Christmas I am choosing twelve of my favourite new benefits that HIPPO brings to the Informatica Community. I acknowledge that the twelve days of Christmas occur after Christmas!