Why It Matters:
Systems should be scalable in two ways. First, they should be functionally scalable, allowing new or additional capabilities, such as measuring loops, to be added to an installed system without inordinate cost or difficulty. Second, systems should be scalable in magnitude. In other words, a system should offer a means to expand monitoring to additional machines.
Scalability allows you to take advantage of new developments and keep your system state-of-the-art. As your needs change and your experience with a system grows, you will likely wish to extend coverage to other machines. A truly scalable system provides a simple, cost-efficient pathway for growth.
The Best Approach:
Monitoring systems should consist of modules that fit together as building blocks to form a system that meets your individual monitoring requirements. To add capabilities or coverage for other machines, you simply “plug in” new modules. This allows you to focus only on those capabilities you really need (monitoring “bad actors”) in the beginning and then grow as necessary. In other words, think big – start small.
Functional scalability is dependent upon your vendor’s commitment to continua system improvements. This commitment is demonstrated in the frequency of system enhancements such as software updates. Your vendor should invest in ongoing research and development to make regular system updates and upgrades available.