The folks at Splunk have done a value mashup with the roll-out this week of Splunk Base, a new resource for datacenter, network, and systems administrators. Taking a cue from open source projects, Splunk Base is an open Creative Commons-licensed repository of Wikis that with volume adoption should give systems troubleshooters a searchable library of knowledge about what ails IT components and how to swiftly remedy those ills.
Fact is that datacenter and network components are spitting out many millions of log files every minute of every day all over the globe. Mined properly, those files produce insights into systems behavior that will be common to many shops deploying those same components. By anonymously making the log issues and remedies available and search-accessible as Wikis via Splunk Base, systems administrators gain a powerful new tool. The more you take part, the more powerful the tool. Power to the admins ... err, people, in other words.
The future for Splunk Base could also lead to the ability to identify common issues that should prompt vendors and/or open source projects to issues fixes and/or add new requirements to the next rev of the products/projects. It could also be used to rate how certain products behave in the field amid myriad configurations and environments. It's a feedback loop of high-value but low-cost to the participants, just the kind of productivity I like.
To be sure, Splunk has a commercial interest in this all. While their product for indexing, mining and searching log files is available for free download, it is a commercial, licensed product for larger users and for those seeking the full compliment of function and support.
Splunk has sponsored a BriefingsDirect podcast, with myself as moderator, on Splunk Base. Take a listen.