Stratusphere UX – First and Always a Digital Experience Monitoring Solution

IT is Making a Major Shift from Devices to Digital Workspaces

There is no question that personal computing has evolved greatly since its mainstream introduction into business. Since Liquidware was born in 2009, we personally have seen the introduction of VDI, the extension of remote desktop delivery technologies,  proliferating SaaS and DaaS applications and cloud.  The nature of personal devices and apps has changed dramatically.  Today, the IT landscape is so altered that  even the term “desktops” has become outmoded.

Liquidware Stratusphere UX Provides DEM Insights
Liquidware Stratusphere UX — First and Always Digital Experience Monitoring

Today, we tend to use the term “digital workspace,” which essentially refers to  an integrated technology framework designed to deliver and manage app, data, and desktop delivery. It allows employees to access their apps and data remotely and in real-time – on any device, from any location, at any time,  regardless of whether the information is stored through cloud services or in the data center.

The Pandemic Pushed the Pedal on Digital Workspaces

The advent of all these  developments were already driving companies to explore the limits of remote work and flexible digital workspaces.   Many organizations wanted to bring applications and data processing closer to the “action,” so industries  like healthcare, education, law enforcement, inventory management and logistics, for example, could access and transfer data immediately in the location where work needed to be performed.

However, the pandemic hitting the globe in 2020, accelerated the push to remote work more aggressively than any other single force.   Mainly because – for many organizations —  it was a matter of survival.   With many more employees working off-site, digital workspaces became the rule, not the exception.  However, managing digital workspaces is very different from managing desktops and requires an IT staff to make a cultural shift in management techniques.   With digital workspaces, pretty much all of the computing and data management is abstracted and stored in data centers or the cloud, not local machines. It runs on shared, not discrete, systems.  The digital workspaces framework needs a purpose-built solution in order to provide visibility into these abstractions and shared systems.   And so, as devices transitioned to digital workspaces, the need for a new breed of monitoring solution called digital experience monitoring has also arisen.

Digital Workspaces Gives Rise to Digital Experience Monitoring

With the use of cloud and SaaS applications dramatically increasing, the focus has shifted from systems monitoring to Digital Experience Monitoring or  DEM, which goes beyond servers and storage to include end point devices, third party applications, infrastructure, and networks.   DEM solutions coordinate metrics data across all of these in order to provide a true and complete picture of the user experience including the local devices and last-mile networks, which are typically outside of IT’s control.

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Leveraging Stratusphere UX to Optimize Cloud Desktops

With the release of Stratusphere UX v. 6.5 this week, we are proud to announce that our solution is currently the only certified end user experience monitoring solution to provide visibility into all three major cloud platforms, including  Amazon Web Services (AWS) Digital Workplace Competency status, advanced monitoring for the  Google Cloud Platform and detailed metrics for WVD on the Microsoft Azure Marketplace.

The Importance of Cloud

Liquidware Stratusphere UX Cloud Workspace Monitoring
Liquidware Stratusphere UX for Unprecedented Visibility into Cloud Workspaces

Cloud platforms to support digital workspace transformation is increasingly important at a growing numbers of enterprise organizations.  Cloud platforms enable uncoupling workers from static devices, thereby letting their workspaces “roam” as needed. 

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Leveraging Your DMZ for Seamless, Rapid WFH Monitoring

As a follow up to my 10 Steps to a Work-from-Home program. I reached out to my colleagues, Steve Hajek and Mark Knouse, here at Liquidware for some additional advice on utilizing Stratusphere UX to monitor the effectiveness of your Work-From-Home (WFH) options.

Liquidware-Stratusphere-UX-Blog-DMZ-Collector

Key Monitoring Objectives for WFH Programs

As I mentioned in my previous blog, monitoring WFH environments allows you to answer three key questions:

  1. Who is connecting?   You need to see who is logging in at what times.   These metrics provide  basic information that lets you know that your workers are able to sign  on to the system.
  2. Who is operational?   This set of metrics allows you to get basic performance stats for your users.  Login times, network latency and app response times among them.  This data helps you determine that your users are having an acceptable level of performance and are not frustrated in trying to accomplish work with sub-optimal workspaces.
  3. Who is productive?   This set of metrics can validate what applications are being used, how long they are being used, how they are responding to users’ needs.  Applications are the backbone of work and this information validates that workers are leveraging them to perform their tasks.

Obviously, this is important information for organizations to have in order to validate that their WFH programs are sound, reliable and effective for workers.

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10 Steps To A Work-From-Home Plan

LiquidwareWFHblogCOVID-19 ushers in a new reality for supporting remote work.

The urgency imposed by the COVID-19 virus has put pressure on organizations to quickly ramp up work-at-home options to allow their employees to remain safe during this uncertain time.  Many of the country’s largest companies are addressing the risks of COVID-19 by limiting travel, canceling or postponing large events, replacing in-person events with virtual ones, and allowing or even requiring some people to work remotely.

Dealing with a pandemic adds just another key reason to support employee work flexibility.  But organizations have an equal responsibility to make sure work is getting done, and that employees are empowered to be as productive as possible.

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Process Optimization with Stratusphere UX

Six months ago we added Process Optimization to the Stratusphere Connector ID Key (CID Key). With the upcoming release of Stratusphere UX 6.1.3, we’ve added some important enhancements to the feature. For those not familiar, Process Optimization helps minimize the effects of poorly performing applications and processes by prioritizing the CPU resources available to those that are in-focus by the end user. In short, this set-it-and-forget-it Stratusphere UX feature provides a user experience safety net. A safety net to ensure in-focus applications get the resources they need, but also to guard against unplanned-for background processes (and memory—more on that in a bit) causing a negative effect on user performance.

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Special Guest Blog: A Journey with Stratusphere UX

I’m excited to share this contributed post as it’s a topic and message I believe is quite important. In this new edition, end-user computing expert Peter von Oven writes of the user onboarding process and taking a user-centric approach to the transformation journey.

I love the approach of Putting User Experience at the Center of the Workspace. It’s an approach that is near and dear to Liquidware; and a core tenant of how Stratusphere UX has been designed. Peter’s book is focused predominantly on practical and actionable methods to best manage the user lifecycle of VDI atop the VMware platform, but the overall message is relevant for all user transformations—physical, virtual or cloud-delivered.

Look for it now at Packt Publishing and very soon on Amazon. Congrats Peter. –Kevin

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