CA ASM - Nugget in the DevOps Sluice Box

Blog Post created by whibr08 Employee on Mar 10, 2016

As a watcher of the American TV show Gold Rush, I feel like I’ve discovered a “Nugget” in CA’s DevOps product portfolio. I’m fairly new to CA so I haven’t yet been exposed to all 200+ individual CA products. CA App Synthetic Monitor (ASM) is something I personally just discovered. I have a system that I use for customer demos and Murphy’s Law causes the system to have issues right before an important demo. Who is Murphy anyways (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murphy%27s_law)?


Back to my story: In order to prevent dysfunctional demos, I typically try and run through my demo just before my real demo. This is time consuming and not always possible for me to do. That’s when an unnamed colleague, with great hair, introduced me to CA ASM. Within minutes of playing around with the ASM console I felt like I had hit paydirt just above bedrock (another Gold Rush reference). I didn’t have to install anything and I was instantly able to monitor simple availability metrics for my demo system. I simply logged into the web console, pointed it at my system url and it began automated testing. I even got to pick from around 100 different data centers in different world-wide locations to run my tests from. I added my email address and mobile number so the system could alert me if the tests failed. And yes, I did this without reading one product manual. As Tony Beets puts it, I was able to “get the *** with it and make it ******* happen.


Fast forward a day: I realized that simple availability testing wouldn’t cover all my test cases. The system could still respond A-OK (status code 200) but deeper in, problems could still be found. I needed the ability to login to my system, poke around a little and make sure everything was ok. That’s when I discovered CA ASM’s Real Browser Monitoring. I was able to record me poking around the system console, logging in, changing pages, looking for data that should and shouldn’t show up, etc. I then loaded this recording into the system and it now runs these real life test cases for me on a configurable time basis. For this advanced feature I took Jack Hoffman’s “No guts, no glory” approach and again didn’t read any documentation. However, this time I did run into a couple issues. For support, I reached out to the CA ASM community and within a few minutes I started receiving the information I needed to resolve my issues.


I’m sure there’s a ton more capability for this product, but currently I’m very pleased with what monitoring I’ve been able to setup with very little effort. If you’re reading this and have similar monitoring needs I encourage you to check CA ASM out, like Todd Hoffman, “I’m not a rocket scientist” and I was able to find instant value in this product!


Thanks for reading.


CA ASM Link: http://www.ca.com/us/products/ca-app-synthetic-monitor.html

Discovery Channel Gold Rush TV Show Link: http://www.discovery.com/tv-shows/gold-rush/


Bryan Whitmarsh
Sr Principal Product Manager

CA Technologies | Idaho