Real-time monitoring & network management for Acurus provided by PRTG Network Monitor
Originally published on July 01, 2022 by Patrick Gebhardt
Last updated on August 12, 2022 • 10 minute read
Acurus is an Australian company that provides technology services for some of the country’s largest and most successful organizations in the utilities, health, government, and retail sectors, including Officeworks, Bakers Delight, Red Energy, Hume Bank, Paccar Australia, The Victorian Department of Health, as well as several Indigenous cooperatives.
Since the company was established in 2007, Acurus has assisted many organizations with their professional and managed service offerings including
- Cyber Security Consulting
- Project Deployment Services
- Application Development and Platform Services
- Strategy Consulting
Acurus provides internet and carriage services to its customers through its national ISP network. It has built its own state-of-the-art, fully managed national private network, for which real-time monitoring and ongoing network management are provided via its Network Operations Centre (NOC). This NOC has a team of 50 that monitor any potential technical issues 24/7, which is complemented by its Melbourne-based, highly skilled engineering team that steps in when more complex issues need escalating.
Its private network is connected to all major Australian telecommunications carriers, global cloud providers, and additional service providers to deliver a high-performance communication platform. It provides ISP-as-a-Service (ISPaaS), cloud connectivity, Network-as-a-Service (NaaS), and managed private national network services to many well-known Australian and New Zealand companies.
Prior to implementing Paessler PRTG Network Monitor, Acurus found itself held back by its previous solution. The monitoring and reporting process was slow, often being very time-consuming. The system was complex to update and impacted Acurus’ ability to adjust quickly to customer needs. These challenges made it hard work to deliver services to customers at the high-quality standard the firm stands by.
Acurus wanted to provide Monitoring-as-a-Service (MaaS) for its managed national private network to pinpoint any issues quicker to ensure they did not impact the performance of its clients’ technology services delivered to their end consumers.
Acurus had a requirement to monitor its ports, switches, routers, WAN, LAN, applications, servers, hardware, bandwidth, storage, firewalls, hard drives, and also virtual environments and selected PRTG about eight years ago to manage this highly complex task.
The challenge of maintaining segregation and read-only access to its customers’ probes was important to Acurus and PRTG was going to be able to provide a granular permissions policy, assisting the company in providing its monitoring services to its customers while also ensuring their security and privacy.
We are always tenacious in finding solutions to tough problems. When confronting problems or building solutions, Acurus always believes there is a better way and its thinking starts by being different and unique, to avoid ending up with the ordinary. This approach helped us in selecting PRTG for the highly complex monitoring requirements for our clients in multiple sectors.
Jason Matser, co-founder and joint CEO
Throughout the implementation of PRTG, Acurus found that it solved many of the challenges it previously faced and allowed the company to focus on giving its customers timely solutions that could be adapted to suit their needs.
“When Acurus first looked at PRTG, the feature which we found the most compelling was the simplicity of the solution. The simple user interface and dashboard, built-in responsive web design, and native phone applications all enabled us to simplify our own operations, deployment, configuration, and ongoing upkeep of the monitoring platform. PRTG also enabled us to heavily customize and perform highly detailed monitoring, both of which are essential elements of our managed services,” said Steven Hall, Head of Consulting at Acurus.
Acurus uses PRTG to ensure:
- Core IT infrastructure availability
- Core IT infrastructure performance
- Network availability
- Network bandwidth usage
- Firewall interfaces
- MS SQL server performance
- Public cloud services (AWS & Microsoft Azure services)
- Active Directory and detailed queries
- Custom application availability
- Custom application performance to report on Service Level Agreements (SLAs)
Using the PRTG monitoring solution, Acurus has significantly improved its ability to provide exceptional managed services to its customers. PRTG allows Acurus to monitor its customers’ entire ICT environment including applications across all data centers, cloud, and on-premise environments. With PRTG, Acurus typically monitors key ICT assets for its customers, utilizing several different approaches and sensors in PRTG to provide a unified view of availability and performance.
Enhanced reporting solves multiple issues
PRTG has enabled Acurus to simplify the process required to monitor the uptime and performance of firewalls and routers at its customers’ sites. PRTG can provide not only uptime and interface statistics but also bandwidth and sFlow information, which has enabled Acurus to truly understand its customers’ systems, how their bandwidth is being used, and which endpoints and applications have the highest usage.
With the enhanced reporting, Acurus has been able to provide granular alerting and notifications which have enabled it to provide its customers with a proactive monitoring service, being able to accurately inform them of which endpoints are using the most bandwidth. This in turn allows Acurus to assist its customers in improving the performance of all services provided.
As part of the Acurus monitoring and managed service offerings, Acurus has established customized scripted monitoring sensors within PRTG. It has also implemented multiple shell-based and database-based scripts to pull key metrics from systems and databases alongside other items such as Active Directory to provide enhanced reporting.
The database performance queries the company wrote can monitor response times through PRTG, giving Acurus the ability to monitor the performance of its customers’ databases and provide proactive monitoring of any potential performance bottlenecks that may be occurring.
We have found these sophisticated levels of monitoring to be highly effective, improving the end user’s experience of the systems and applications in use, allowing us to provide a proactive resolution rather than having the end-user raise issues.
Saif Akil, Head of Service Management at Acurus
SLA reporting for its clients
Through its use of PRTG, an unexpected benefit for Acurus has been its ability to automate SLA reporting. These reports have allowed the company to focus on the real uptime of its customers’ services and provide better overall support and proactiveness.
Every system failure or downtime event could lead to an impact on its customers’ services and therefore high availability is always essential. PRTG has also provided Acurus with the ability to share the SLA reports with its customers to ensure clarity and accountability enhancing its overall managed services.
Having used PRTG for more than eight years, Acurus is extremely happy with the product and in particular how Paessler has kept adding new features to stay relevant.
Steven Hall, Head of Consulting at Acurus
During the COVID lockdowns in 2020 and 2021, like most organizations, Acurus had to learn how to operate in a new, physically disconnected way. Its NOC adapted very quickly and working with the specialist team of engineers in Melbourne, all were able to view the PRTG dashboard remotely, which proved invaluable in keeping its customer networks available and performing at optimum levels.
By providing its customers with these comprehensive monitoring features through PRTG, Acurus provides
a 360-degree view of its customers’ ICT availability and performance allowing them to focus on running
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