These days it seems that it is almost impossible to find an organisation who is not either using cloud infrastructure services, such as AWS (Amazon Web Services) or Microsoft Azure, or at least experimenting with them. The benefits are attractive, lower operating costs, better resilience and rapid deployment times are just a few.
As cloud infrastructure and networks become more popular and thus more critical to an organisations operations, extending tools such as network monitoring solutions to cover these new entities is becoming more important.
The good news is that this capability already exists. Network monitoring solutions such as Ipswitch's WhatsUp Gold provide the same monitoring and incident response features for both in-house and cloud infrastructure.
Devices hosted in the cloud can be seen in its wider context. For example if a cloud-based server is a mirrored copy of a physical server in the organisation network, for redundancy purposes.
Both AWS (using Cloud Watch) and Microsoft Azure host APIs which can be used by network monitoring tools to display or record performance indicators. Examples include, resources being used, quantity of inbound/outbound traffic and number of concurrent connected user accounts.
While cloud service providers such as AWS and Microsoft Azure offer some limited monitoring capabilities. Network monitoring solutions offer the ability to create custom dashboards which can be used to monitor multiple devices, groups of devices for very specific metrics.
Network monitoring tools can use cloud APIs to track the billing aspect of AWS and Microsoft Azure. Allowing for the tracking of cost over time, versus performance.
Connecting a Network Monitoring Solution to AWS and Microsoft Azure
There are two types of network management solutions, those which use agents to collect performance data and forward this back to a centralised console; and those which are agent-less and use credentials to log into monitored devices and collect performance data.
For those which use agents, the extension into the cloud is as simple as installing said agent.
Those which use credentials will leverage an API, for which both AWS and MIcrosoft Azure publish steps to achieve this.