Ipanema's AppsWork Lets Partners, MSPs Monitor Networks Via Smartphones

Ipanema said partners will still be able to access the AppsWork service through the online service portal they have traditionally used on their laptops or desktops. But these new mobile capabilities also give solution providers the flexibility to keep tabs on clients' application environments through iOS, Android, Windows and BlackBerry mobile devices.

"It gives them instant access, anytime, anywhere," Rogier van der Wal, vice president of cloud services for Ipanema, told CRN.

[Related: Ipanema Teams With Ingram Micro For SMB WAN Optimization ]

AppsWork is Ipanema's application performance management service, targeted primarily at the midmarket and SMBs. Launched about six months ago, AppsWork is used by both network administrators directly and Ipanema's solution provider or MSP partners, who often assume these application monitoring activities for their clients in a services-based model, van der Wal said. Ipanema has 14 U.S. channel partners selling or using AppsWork today.

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"In most of the cases, our partner is the service administrator on behalf of their end user, and then they really sell it as a separate service around unified communications, for instance, and it works very well," van der Wal said.

AppsWork serves three primary functions. The first, van der Wal said, is to provide real-time visibility into the applications running on a network through a series of visualization and quality assessment tools. New with the mobile release is a Salesforce.com tool called "Chatter" that can push out real-time notifications to alert users of any changes in performance.

The second capability delivered through AppsWork is WAN optimization, achieved through a set of acceleration and compression features that reduce transfer times for large data files being sent across the network.

Lastly, AppsWork delivers dynamic bandwidth control, meaning the service automatically redirects bandwidth to support mission-critical applications the instant those applications are detected on the network. If, for example, an application like Salesforce.com is being deployed, AppsWork will automatically draw bandwidth away from other "recreational" applications, like YouTube, to support it.

"[AppsWork] will instantly detect that a business-critical application is running over the network, and that this business-critical application needs to be guaranteed in terms of performance," van der Wal said.

Solution providers or system administrators can also re-adjust the business criticality assigned to different applications through a self-service model.

Scott Schulze, director of operations at Fusion Technology Solutions, a Healdsburg ,Calif.-based MSP and Ipanema partner, said AppsWork, and particularly its bandwidth control functionality, has already been a game-changer for clients.

"Especially where we are, in Northern California and wine country, ... there are bandwidth limitations on what you can really get in some places here," Schulze said. "So we are able to take and optimize that bandwidth for the client and really allow them to reap the benefits."

Schulze added that being able to remotely provision clients' networks through AppsWork, rather than having to do everything on-site, has also been a perk.

"The nice thing for us is that we are able to go behind, on the Web, and really control some of the things that are going on, and make adjustments as needed," Schulze said.

Van der Wal said the AppsWork service can be accessed in either a read-only mode or the mode that allows administrators or solution providers to make actual network and application adjustments. The new smartphone service, available now, is entirely read-only.