Auto Profiler for Production Java Apps Goes Beta

Application performance monitoring (APM) solutions provider Instana on Tuesday unveiled a new continuous production profiler for Java apps.

AutoProfile, now in beta, is a built-in feature of the company's SaaS APM solution.

As the name implies, the new profiler was designed to automatically and continuously profile how an application's code runs in production, with no special configuration needed, and without impacting app performance or resource overhead. It uncovers code bottlenecks and reports CPU and contention profiles. CPU profiles allow developers to discover which method is CPU-intensive, explained Instana senior product marketing manager in a blog post, so they can efficiently and precisely optimize their code. Contention profiles show which synchronized directives are causing long wait times, inefficient use of the CPU's multithreading capabilities, and leading to bad overall performance.

The new capability is based on technology from German performance profiler StackImpact, which Instana acquired last year. That company's performance profiling and monitoring service provides code-level insights into CPU usage, memory allocations, thread contention, and latency bottlenecks of Golang, Node.js, Python and Java applications.

"Even as application platforms have evolved and new performance tools have emerged, the need to profile code to identify and eliminate bottlenecks and sub-optimal code has never disappeared," commented Chris Farrell, Instana technical director and APM strategist, in a statement. "Instana leveraged the technology from our StackImpact acquisition announced in December to create an integrated solution that has every profile needed for developers at any time."

Instana's namesake APM tool was designed specifically for microservices architectures, including Kubernetes and container-based applications. The solution automates the entire APM lifecycle, including application discovery and mapping, monitoring sensor and agent deployment, and application infrastructure health monitoring. The solution is designed to recognize application or infrastructure changes in real time, and instantly adjust its application service maps, monitoring thresholds, and health dashboards.

AutoProfile is automatically available to current Instana users at no charge. The current release manages Java code, but the company says profilers for other languages are planned for the near future.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].