Blog & News

We All Cringe When We See This

July 2011

Doug Mewmaw

Managing your disk environment can be such a chore, and we all cringe when we see a graph like the one shown below:

Alarming Disk Growth

We immediately ask the question, “Why is my disk growing at an alarming rate?”

The task of figuring out what’s changed on the system is tedious at best. We walk around from department to department with our large files query simply trying to get people to delete old files. What a pain, especially when we learn that the process barely made a dent in the disk growth issue. I regularly visit IT shops and see this phenomenon very often. In fact, it’s very common for me to hear this type of response:

“It takes me days, sometimes weeks, to figure what’s changed in my environment…I just don’t have the time for these kinds of issues…I just wish I had a better way to diagnose disk growth issues.”

Been There Done That…I think we all can agree that managing disk growth is a pain in the you know what.

The good news is that it doesn’t have to take weeks, days, or even hours!

Next, a real life example proves that these issues can be tackled in just a matter of minutes!

A Frustrated Customer Calls

This particular phone call started out with a panicky / frustrated voice.

“My disk is growing out of control and my boss wants to know why. Can Performance Navigator help me figure out what’s going on?”

I love these types of phone calls, because this is where I get to give customers the “WOW” moment.

After taking a couple minutes to start a web meeting, I got on the customer's PC and indeed saw that his disk space utilization had grown significantly in the last 4 months.

I then said to the customer, “I can figure out why your disk is growing in less than two minutes”.

Incredulously, he responded like everyone does, “No way”. Sounding like one of my kids, I simply said, “Way…now watch this”.

Power Analytics™ At Its Best

As former customer, I’ve always marveled at the functionality of Performance Navigator, as year after year, more cool functionality showed up in the product. Now seven years later, and MPG’s Director of Education and Analysis, I can attest that MPG’s new Power Analytics menu options are the Holy Grail for busy system administrators.

On that menu, a few of the options are below. Two of them, Library Change Analysis and Library Object analysis will save the day for the customer…but he doesn’t know it yet.

Library Change Analysis

We pick up our real life story with me merely clicking on Library Change Analysis.

I definitely had the customer’s full attention when this popped up on his screen:

Script Analysis

Using MPG’s powerful BEFORE vs. AFTER technology, I then told the customer that we will simply look at his historical data and set up our search criteria. First we click on a before date when the disk utilization was smaller (Before vs. After From Date). Next we look at the historical data then click on any day where the disk has grown significantly (Before vs. After After Date). This step takes 5 seconds.

Why is my Disk Growing at an Alarming Rate?

Upon continuing the analysis process, the comprehensive analysis finished in less than 2 minutes.

The WOW Moment

As I said, my favorite part is when the customer sees what appears on their screen:

Library/Disk Analysis

  1. The comprehensive analysis shows the BEFORE period measured (3/13/11). Notice it lists the top libraries, sizes, and percentage of total disk.
  2. The comprehensive analysis shows the AFTER period measured (6/12/11). Notice it lists the top libraries, sizes, and percentage of total disk.
  3. Shows the measuring period (3/13/11 vs. 6/12/11) and indicates how much the disk space utilization grew during the period (12.3%)
  4. Indicates all library growth and “red flags” any new libraries on the system (that were not reported before). The report identifies any libraries that are growing at an alarming rate (greater than 20%)

Notice in this real life example, that journals grew 70% during the period measured!

Additionally, another library (PSDCO) grew 21.9% during the period.

At this point, the customer said, “That's incredible… but what about…”

Cutting him off (I always know what’s coming next), I said, “Now you want to know what’s going on with your “Red Flagged” library (PSDCO). – right?"

Chuckling, and in amazement, he said “Exactly”.

Of course, now I’m just showing off, when I again said, “Watch this”.

Power Analytics At Its Best – Part 2

The beauty of MPG’s Before vs. After technology is once you set your dates, you can run analysis after analysis. That is, since our date criteria was already set, the customer simply clicked on the Library Object Analysis menu option. The analysis script then ran immediately. I think I heard the customers chin hit his desk when the following appeared on his screen in less than 1 minute:

Object Analysis for Library

The customer immediately understood why his library PSDCO was growing.

The entire troubleshooting process took 5 minutes.

Amazed, the customer said, “This would have taken me a week to figure this out…I didn’t even know the Performance Navigator had this functionality…”

Note: Shortly thereafter, the customer invested in MPG’s system administration class where he learned all the functionality of the product. (Highly Recommended)

Now you can easily see that managing disk growth does not have to be a chore any longer. Experience the WOW moment yourself and call us for a demo any time. (800 457-6744)

Finally, check out all the new functionality in MPG’s Power Analytics™. Not only will you learn your system at a deeper level, your performance management service levels will become impeccable.

About the Author: Doug Mewmaw is a man who is passionate about the things he loves in his life. Doug is passionate about his golf game, he is passionate about his job, and last, but not least, he is passionate about his wife Cathy and their 5 children. Doug came to MPG in July of 2004 as Director of Education and Analysis. At that time he was our most knowledgeable customer; he had worked in the IT arena since 1983, and he loved the MPG products. He was constantly on Randy's case to hire him. So he did -- and we never looked back.
Doug is one of those lucky people who has both highly honed people skills, excellent communication skills and advanced technical skills. One of Doug's training attendees wrote to us: "I wanted to take a moment to tell you how unbelievably impressed I was with both your product and our instructor, Doug Mewmaw. .... Doug was superb. He has to be one of the most dynamic, knowledgeable and PATIENT instructors I've ever had. We were a tough crowd - tons of questions, intermittently having to leave for crises, all the things that challenge an instructor. He handled it all like a champ. His positive attitude and enthusiasm for the product are unparalleled."

Blog Home