Getting Appy with Splunk

A year ago this week, we at Dell EMC stepped up our Splunk App game when we debuted a VMAX Technology Add-On (TA) for Splunk. I got to also give credit to Splunk Staff SE extraordinaire and Big Data Beard contributor Dean Jackson who helped create a VMAX app to visualize all the data from the TA. With the TA and the app, users are able to collect and visualize inventory, performance information and summary information from their VMAX storage arrays. I remember being pretty freaking excited about this for two reasons, first it showed our commitment to the Splunk partner ecosystem and secondly, VMAX has a HUGE install base (hundreds of thousands of users) and this app had the potential to give a lot of user’s valuable insight. Fast forward one year and the VMAX team has again stepped up their app game #Appgame (let’s get this trending). I’m excited that we have made significant improvements to both the TA and the app that greatly enhances functionality and insight.

Let’s pull back the curtain and explore what’s new and there are a number new things. Let’s start with the TA. The new TA 2.0 is configured to work with Unisphere 8.4 which features new endpoints and metrics that weren’t previously available. You can now get metrics from things like array, storage resource pools, storage group, workload planner, VMAX system alerts, ports and much more. In addition to the new metrics, the restriction which required an instance of the TA per Unisphere instance has been removed. This was by far the number one complaint from customers we have heard this past year and I’m glad we were able to take the feedback and improve. If you have multiple instances of Unisphere, this is for you! Lastly, we have included SSL to give the option to encrypt data traveling between Unisphere and Splunk.

The team is doing a complete overhaul of the app as well. Every reporting level mentioned above will have its own dedicated dashboard(s), each driven by the KPIs defined in Unisphere. This will allow for all information to be collated in one place and with control over filtering right down to individual resources, SRP_Performance-All.PNGor the ability to report on everything all at once. To help drive these bulkier searches, the app has post-search processing configured to reduce the resource usage footprint of the app. Instead of having an individual search per dashboard panel, one search could drive up to 12 panels at once, drastically increasing report generation time and performance.  Drilldowns have been greatly improved, users have the ability to report against all arrays/resources, or drill down by array and dynamically load resources for further drilldowns, giving users complete control over what level they want to view their VMAX environment at. Again #Appgame (I’m determined to get this to trend)

Sneak peek into a little further down the development pipeline, we are working to integrating with Splunk’s ITSI which is pretty darn cool. More to come on this soon.

I’m sure by now you have already gone on to SplunkBase and are looking for the updated TA and App to download. Right now we are still in beta and are hoping to get this up into SplunkBase soon. Fear not, if you can’t wait to check it out, we encourage you to reach out, participate in the beta and let us know what you think. Whether you are currently running the 1.0 TA and App or are interested in Splunking your VMAX for the first time if you are interesting in checking this out now, reach out to on Twitter @broberts2261 or leave a comment below and I’ll get you in contact with the product management team.

Lastly, the week of weeks is upon us. Splunk’s annual user conference that is affectionately known as .Conf officially beings today (9/25) If you are here, stop by the Dell EMC booth and we can show you a demo of this app plus our other apps for Isilon, VNX & XtremIO. Happy Splunking!