Hybrid cloud computing is a kind of IT architecture set up with a mixture of cloud and on-premises components, or a mixture of private and public cloud, with a level of orchestration and integration between the two parts.
Hybrid clouds work similarly to regular cloud computing, but they have several benefits, such as allowing dynamic and changeable workloads. But they can also be more challenging to manage. As a result, I recommend using a dedicated monitoring tool, one capable of working with hybrid cloud infrastructure. I’ll go through a few different cloud monitoring solutions, but my recommendation is SolarWinds® Server & Application Monitor. SolarWinds has been in the server monitoring game for a long time, and they also have much experience with cloud and virtual monitoring.
What Is Hybrid Cloud Monitoring?
While hybrid cloud infrastructure is beneficial for many situations, it’s also vital to ensure cloud infrastructure monitoring practices are in place. Due to the interaction between private and public clouds, or cloud and on-premises infrastructure, API compatibility and solid network connectivity are vitally important. With integration between multiple providers, you can end up with service level agreement issues, and potential problems with service disruptions. The more providers you have, the higher the likelihood is a cloud service issue impacts your end users, your applications, or the delivery of your own services.
With a cloud monitoring system, you can keep tabs on how your network is performing. You’ll need to set up end-to-end monitoring to capture your applications. Costs of hybrid cloud setups can rapidly scale, so it’s also important to keep an eye on growth, sprawl, and other issues potentially making your infrastructure less efficient.
Best Cloud Monitoring Solutions
There are several hybrid cloud monitoring tools available, but I’ll cover my top three for enterprise solutions. If you’re looking for a free or open-source solution, there are also many available to download. For a professional setting, however, I recommend a solution designed for the enterprise environment.
My top choice for hybrid cloud monitoring solutions is SolarWinds Server & Application Monitor (often referred to as SAM). it provides end-to-end monitoring and visibility into your applications, whether they’re on a public or private cloud, or within a hybrid cloud infrastructure. With agentless monitoring technology, applications and services can also be monitored on-premises, or with cloud providers such as AWS, Microsoft Azure, and others. Even if your applications move between the cloud and on-premises, you can keep track of them using SAM.
It also includes features recognizing the importance of synthesizing multiple different data types when troubleshooting within a hybrid cloud environment. It includes a dashboard called PerfStack™ to help you deal with this issue. PerfStack allows you to drag and drop different hybrid cloud performance metrics into the tool, and then it displays them in an overlaid analysis, so you can see the connections between different metrics and correlate problems or chains of issues. If response times are slow or you’re dealing with packet loss or issues in dependent connections, SAM can also help you get to the bottom of this and figure out which part of your IT infrastructure is affecting application performance.
Finally, SAM also includes metrics and monitoring for your application health and performance and monitoring from out-of-the-box templates. It’s built to make it easy to get started, so you can quickly determine how your hybrid cloud is performing. You can also use SAM for hybrid cloud monitoring with custom applications, and you can modify the out-of-the-box templates or create new ones to fit your needs.
SolarWinds SAM also includes a free trial for up to 30 days, so you can test it out and see how it works.
Another great tool is AppDynamics. They offer enterprise-level analytics and performance monitoring for applications, including visibility into cloud or traditional infrastructures. Like SolarWinds software, AppDynamics also provides end-to-end monitoring, with alerts if any issues arise in your IT infrastructure.
AppDynamics operates using AI-driven root cause analysis and includes out-of-the-box templates for monitoring key resources. With real-time technical and business performance analysis, you can quickly and easily spot issues and resolve them, to ensure your hybrid cloud setup is always delivering business value, not hindering it.
It provides monitoring at the code level, regardless of whether your infrastructure resources are on-premises, or in a public or private cloud. AppDynamics can work with Kubernetes, Docker containers, microservices, Amazon AWS, and Microsoft Azure, among others.
With AppDynamics you can also proactively monitor every aspect of your business processes, including IoT-based applications, user journeys, transaction volumes, and throughput monitoring. This allows you to quickly diagnose issues and determine the root cause of slowdowns potentially impacting user experience. Finally, the Business iQ tool allows you to correlate end-user experience with application and business performance data, to maintain your applications’ ability to drive business value.
I also recommend looking at BMC products and for hybrid cloud monitoring check out TrueSight Operations Management in particular. This is a tool driven by machine learning and AIOps, and it monitors and analyzes your system to learn typical behavior, correlate data, and help you to find and predict issues to fix them fast. One of the great things about the machine learning process is it can reduce event noise, identify data anomalies, and provide predictive analytics, so you can remedy problems before it impacts your business users.
It also includes tools for log analytics and some kinds of automated remediation, so small and uncomplicated issues can be resolved quickly. This reduces your overall mean time to resolution. It works with hybrid environments and monitors infrastructure performance across on-premises or cloud systems, and hybrid cloud infrastructure as well.
While this isn’t a tool designed for hybrid cloud environments, BMC also offers several other products you can use in combination with TrueSight Operations Management. This can give you a complete monitoring solution to ensure your hybrid cloud is performing as well as possible.
Choosing a Cloud Monitoring Tool
If you’re running a hybrid cloud IT infrastructure in an enterprise, ensure you always use cloud monitoring solutions such as the examples I gave above. You should be able to try them all out for a free trial, or at least an online demo, to make sure it’s the right fit for your organization. My top choice is SolarWinds Server & Application Monitor, due to its end-to-end monitoring abilities, integration with other SolarWinds products, and easy-to-use interface. Ensure you also follow cloud monitoring best practices, such as setting up holistic, full system monitoring, setting a clear baseline of your hybrid cloud’s typical performance, and keeping track of application performance before it impacts your end users.