HomeBlogZend Platform - A Step Forward

Zend Platform - A Step Forward

Published March 3, 2005
I was invited to a presentation of the Zend Platform product. Running multiple installations of PHP on multiple servers, the product caught my eye.

The Platform truely is a platform. It handles everything from Installation to Monitoring, Configuration to Error Management, Debugging to Java Integration.

I decided to try the evaluation.

Installation was a breeze. Works just like all of the other Zend applications.

However, I did run into one problem. I have two instances of Apache running. One for php4 and one for php5. Zend Platform did not recognize both. I tried reinstalling to get the php5 registered as a node and it did not work. An easy solution for this would be to have the Central Server (the primary server where the reports can be viewed) have a manual add option.

Also, the "Java Bridge" reports the following errror, "Java extension was not loaded." I am assuming that is due to the fact I do not have the JVM installed. Why not say that?

Anyway off to the testing...

Zend Central - the heart of the Platform. Zend Central allows a server admin to centrally configure php servers. Their settings (in php.ini) and how alerts are triggered can be configured on a server to server basis or "cloned" to multiple servers fairly easily.

A graphical display, similar to a cockpit, enables the admin to easily see the status of all of his/her php servers. Every page can be grouped and/or filtered by many different options.

Another nifty feature is the "User Management." Using this feature, I can have my programmers login daily to see if any of the sites they are responsible for are performing poorly or simply spitting out errors. But wait, Zend offers a better way. I can add a rule to send a programmer an email in case there is an error generated. Rules are pretty powerful and allow different types of rules to go to different people. Also, it can post to a url (good if you need to systematically do something). The one thing I was looking for though was it to email a specific programmer if his site had an error by specifying a virtual host or script name. This is not possible and it better be in the next version. I would not buy it without this feature.

I am going to continue this at a later time. The remaining sections to go over are listed below. In addition, I will like to get my php5 server working and also hook it up to my production servers for testing there. There is some mechanism to get around network issues.

PHP Intelligence - where all the events/alerts live.
Performance - same stuff as Zend Performance Suite.
Studio Server - same as the server included with Zend Studio.
Java Bridge - currently not working.
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Ronnie Schwartz is the CTO and founder of RustyBrick, an agile web & mobile development firm that creates effective applications and focuses on finding the right balance between time to production and software quality to get clients in front of their customers quickly and effectively. Ronnie brings over twenty years of innovative design, programming and management expertise to the table.

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