I was thinking today about the current economy and how our customers are running with minimal staff and minimal budgets. My mind wandered back to my previous career as a performance analyst/capacity planner with a Fortune 500 manufacturer
and how, during business downturns, we were charged with reducing support costs by 10 to 20 percent (along with our customary five to eight percent salary reduction – that we usually recovered during the upturns). During one cycle, we were charged with coming up with 15 to 40 percent reductions. I remember my manager saying that any manager coming up with 40 percent reduction should be fired for not doing his or her job in the first place! But I digress.
One of our software line items was maintenance for a software product called ‘JARS’ which I think stood for ‘Johnson Accounting and Reporting System’. We were paying thousands of dollars a year for this product. We realized its only purpose was to provide daily, weekly, and monthly reports for the manager of operations. The software processed the same data tapes that our MXG software was processing into a Performance Database (PDB) on a nightly basis. I consider MXG one of the first ‘shareware’ products. It is masterfully maintained and distributed (still at an incredibly low price) by Barry Merrill, his colleagues, and contributors. Again, I digress.
I looked at the reports that were being produced and suggested to the manager receiving them that I could produce the same reports in parallel from the MXG PDB. I wrote a program, tested it and showed the results to the manager who approved it for production use. The end result was that we eliminated a line item in our software budget costing us thousands of dollars a year and eliminated a batch job thereby reduducing CPU costs and extra tape mounts (even though tape mounts had been automated by this time, there was still a cost involved).
So what’s the point of this story? Performance Sentry a.k.a. NTSMF (for mainframe performance geeks that stands for SMF for ‘Windows NT’ ) was created with MXG in mind as a way to efficiently and cost effectively do performance analysis and capacity planning for Windows Servers. The same MXG data repository and reporting tools can be used for Windows performance data produced by Performance Sentry. Performance Sentry uses approximately .3 percent CPU and 16MB to 20MB per day to monitor CPU, Disk, Memory, Network, and all running processes on Windows Servers.
Companies using MXG could replace that astonishingly large line item in their software budget for Windows performance monitoring, reporting, and capacity planning with the more cost effective (and more robust) Perfomance Sentry from Demand Technology Software.