PagerDuty Updates

PagerDuty update · October 9, 2013

Connect Alert Service PagerDuty to Hundreds of Apps with Zapier

Your company’s server goes down and the sysadmin who receives the downtime alert is sound asleep. It’s midnight and with sleeping Joe on the job your server monitoring service has been rendered useless. PagerDuty to the rescue. Created by ex-Amazon employees, PagerDuty aggregates alerts from your existing more
Matthew Guay
Written by Matthew GuayLast updated February 1, 2018

Notifications are bad enough on your phone, with it buzzing every five minutes to tell you about a new txt message or Facebook like or email. If you're not careful, it's easy to let the important messages get lost in the flood.

For your company, that can be crucial. If you're relying on notifications from a half-dozen monitoring tools—and happen to miss the notifications from one of them—you miss the chance to fix problems and get things working again quickly. That's why PagerDuty is designed to bring all of your important infrastructure notifications into one place.

It doesn't monitor your site and apps itself—and today, just monitoring your site's uptime isn't enough. Instead, it integrates directly through your app's API or with direct connections to over 200 services—and hundreds more through PagerDuty's Zapier integrations—to centralize all of your notifications and route them to the right person. Or, you can connect with email to pull notification messages in from legacy applications.

You'll start by adding escalation policies and your team to PagerDuty. Organize your team members and list how you want to deal with certain type of issues. Say your email services are down—but the rest of your site is up. You'd want that issue to go to a different team than when your main website is down, say. And if the email service didn't get fixed within a day, you might need to notify another team to make sure the issue gets resolved. Think through the way your team works through issues like these, and codify them into escalation policies. And make sure to list your team member's real schedules, as PagerDuty will use that to decide who to notify when things go down.

Then, when you add services for PagerDuty to monitor for incidents, you can select the correct escalation policy that fits that service without having to re-specify things every time. You can have PagerDuty group alerts with other services, automatically resolve issues after a certain time, and more depending on what you need.

Planning maintenance? You don't want tons of notifications alerting you to downtime when you know it's going to happen. So you can schedule that, too, in PagerDuty. Select the services you know will be down along with the time, and PagerDuty will wait before notifying you if anything's wrong.

Sometimes things really will break, and that's when PagerDuty will jump into action. It'll follow your escalation policy, notifying the right person or team about the issue with an in-app message, SMS, or phone call, and combining similar issues so you don't get overwhelmed with notifications. Or, it can notify your team inside Slack and other apps you rely on, to make sure issues are seen by the full team. You can then dig through the issue details in PagerDuty, check other services to see if there's a broader issue, and look back at historical trends to see if this is something that keeps popping up.

It might be fun to have a NASA mission control-style room filled with screens monitoring every part of your software—but it's not that practical. PagerDuty can do a much better job watching all of your services, making sure you know when you actually need to fix something—and don't get so overwhelmed with notifications that you forget to pay attention to them.

Have any feedback on this overview, or something we should change? Let us know!

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PagerDuty is the leading digital operations management platform for businesses, that integrates with ITOps and DevOps monitoring stacks to improve operational reliability and agility. From enriching and aggregating events to correlating them into actionable incidents, PagerDuty provides insights so you can intelligently respond to critical disruptions for exceptional customer experience. With hundreds of native integrations with monitoring and collaboration tools, automated scheduling, advanced reporting, and guaranteed reliability, PagerDuty is trusted by thousands of organizations globally to increase business and employee efficiency.

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