An important key to making software and services as useful as possible is attracting a vibrant community of contributors who work together to build an extended ecosystem of plugins, add-ons, and extensions.
Happy first birthday, New Relic Platform
That’s why we’re so excited about the success of New Relic Platform, launched a year ago this month. On just its first birthday, New Relic Platform has already become a popular industry library, boasting more than 100 totally free public plugins that can help New Relic users expand their real-time monitoring to cover even highly unique application stacks with the ability to seamlessly monitor more devices, more systems, and more software applications from a single location.
Important as this 100-plugin milestone may be, though, it tells only part of the New Relic Platform story. Some 80% of the public plugins were published by community members. “We couldn’t possibly be domain experts in developing real-time monitoring solutions for each and every potential piece of the modern application stack,” said Patrick Lightbody, vice president of product management at New Relic. “But we thought collectively our customers could.”
In addition to the more than 100 public plugins, another 330 or so have been built for private use. Almost 8,000 customer accounts of all sizes are now building, using, and sharing plugins on the New Relic Platform, with approximately 14,000 plugins in active use. “One of the best surprises for us was the popularity and heavy activity among large enterprises, which just shows you that modern software touches all companies, large and small, ” Lightbody added.
Plugins help you monitor more stuff
The availability of a wide range of plugins (see all the public plugins here) makes it easier for New Relic users to extend performance monitoring across the ever-expanding array of old and new technologies found in the modern application stack. For example, the most widely used plugins monitor databases, email, Web servers, and caching layers. The most popular specific technologies address MySQL and Microsoft SQL databases, but the range extends from A (Amazon Web Services Analytics, for example) to Z (ZFS Pools). Finding the best plugin to use is easy, as users have so far rated and “favorited” the plugins they use nearly 2,000 times.
One reason for the ongoing interest in New Relic Platform is that we work hard to make it easy for anyone to develop plugins to meet their unique needs. “Our goal was to give our customers some simple tools and watch them go!” said Lightbody. Using Ruby, Java, and .NET SDKs or simple APIs, developers have built and published plugins in mere hours, leveraging our with plug & play dashboards, customizable alerts, and complete data storage and scalability. Of course, you can keep the plugins you develop private, or choose to share them with the New Relic community.