To realize the many benefits of cloud computing, an organization needs to have reasonable visibility into, and control over, its workloads. Hosted cloud services make these insights difficult to come by. Without sufficient monitoring capabilities, that visibility and control are all but impossible to attain.
This reality is what makes application monitoring such a vital concern for businesses that put their faith -- and possibly the success or failure of their enterprise -- in the hands of cloud providers. Rather than having to guess, monitoring tells those organizations about app performance. It's how they assess their actual security practices and not simply hope that their data stays out of harm's way.
Monitoring for performance, spending and security requires concerted effort by teams that might not by nature or by tradition work well together. Developers will develop, administrators will administer and so on. But a business can spot inefficiencies and vulnerabilities better when expertise from across teams is applied to the challenge of application monitoring in the cloud. Security can't only be the concern of security tools and teams. And unused resources, which are a chronic -- and costly -- problem for cloud users, need to be flagged by whatever method available.
This coordinated and collective monitoring effort is at the heart of cloud expert Chris Tozzi's guidance in this handbook's first article. He breaks down the essential elements to effective application monitoring, looking at how they differ and where they overlap.
Also included in this guide is advice on how to properly size a cloud instance so that performance is as expected but the associated costs don't come as an expensive surprise. Information is also provided on the capabilities of the monitoring and management tools that are provided natively in three major cloud platforms.