aufeminin increases IT infrastructure stability & performance with Paessler PRTG
82.25% owned by the Axel Springer Group, aufeminin is the world's no. 1 publisher of women's websites, with an audience of 46.6 million unique visitors per month and 13.7 million unique visitors per month in France (figures from 2013).
It is present in France, Germany, Austria, the UK, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Brazil, Italy, Poland, Switzerland, Canada, Morocco, Tunisia and Vietnam. The aufeminin editorial and community offering covers all the topics preferred by women using several formats: articles, features, videos, interviews, reports, chats, and more. The offering is deployed on all devices: websites, mobiles, tablets, TV and print.
aufeminin also owns Smart AdServer, which develops and markets premium adserving solutions for media agencies and publishers, to manage web, mobile, and iPad display campaigns. Today, Smart AdServer has more than 350 customers for 1,500 sites on four continents.
aufeminin acquired 100% of the online casting site, EtoileCasting, in August 2012 and 60% of the women's site for secret addresses and unusual ideas, MyLittleParis, in December 2013. The aufeminin Group generated sales of €60 million in 2013.
"PRTG is at the heart of our alert and on-call management processes. It also enables in-depth analysis of the metrics collected, with a data historization capacity of one year. This capability is particularly useful for retrospectives on one-off production incidents."
Julien Bailhache, Site Reliability Team Manager at aufeminin
The challenge: overseeing the company’s entire architecture
To ensure the 24/7 quality of service, availability, and performance of its website and SmartAdServer, aufeminin.com wanted a monitoring tool that could oversee its entire architecture; in other words, a turnkey tool that was intuitive, stable and ergonomic, all with a good price/performance ratio and a clear, easy-to-understand licensing model. For these reasons, an open-source tool would not have been suitable.
aufeminin therefore decided on the network monitoring solution Paessler PRTG Network Monitor.
Implementation and usage of PRTG
At aufeminin, PRTG is deployed in a production environment consisting of four data centers, including one in the USA, several hundred servers, and dozens of key network devices: BGP routers, firewalls, load balancers, level 3 and 2 switches.
"No service provider was required to implement PRTG,” explains Julien Bailhache, Site Reliability Team Manager at aufeminin. “The ease of use and wealth of documentation, as well as the responsiveness of support, mean that PRTG can be integrated very easily into a technical infrastructure without outside help."
PRTG monitors various critical points in the infrastructure, both at low level (for example basic server metrics, CPU, memory, etc.) and at functional level (for example the nominal status of various backoffice tasks). All layers of the infrastructure are monitored: CPU, network traffic, as well as the number of sessions where applicable.
Beyond 'basic' network monitoring (for example the monitoring of flow traffic), PRTG can cover all possible business needs, thanks to a wide variety of sensors. aufeminin has two independent PRTG servers, one in-house and the other hosted externally, both with several remote probes.
In this way, database management teams can easily monitor key service performance indicators at business level. The infrastructure team can also monitor the structural network equipment and hardware metrics of the hundreds of servers housed in the four data centers.
"PRTG is at the heart of our alert and on-call management processes. It also enables in-depth analysis of the metrics collected, with a data historization capacity of one year. This capability is particularly useful for retrospectives on one-off production incidents," continues Julien Bailhache.
According to aufeminin, the main advantages of Paessler's solution are as follows:
- product stability
- rich functionality
- value for money
- ease of installation and configuration
- ease of ordering
- quality of service and support.
"Along with the price, the software's capabilities were the most important criteria. The product's developments, the presence of a community around the product, are a real plus and have enabled us to further improve our monitoring system over time. To date, there's no element of our infrastructure that we haven't been able to monitor with PRTG," confirms Julien Bailhache.
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