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Tools Perspective on Next-Gen Managed Services

Posted by: Santhana Krishna On February 13, 2019 05:13 PM facebook linked in twitter

Next-Gen Managed Services requires a new tooling architecture that meets the demands of the Cloud services offered by CSPs like AWS. Traditional set of tools are based on static IT environments with pre-defined set of rules. Next-Gen Managed Services need to address the dynamic nature of cloud based services and hence require a tool set that addresses the needs for Automation, Availability and Performance Monitoring of dynamic workloads, Cloud usage and cost management, Cloud resource lifecycle management and DevOps Lifecycle management.

Cloud resource lifecycle management – With Cloud environments becoming critical for Next-Gen managed services scope, one of the key tools required is a cloud resource lifecycle management. As an example, AWS Management Console allows for AWS native resources to be managed from a single pane of glass. For enterprises that manage a Hybrid Cloud (Private & Public), VMWare VRA is a good example that allows for Private Cloud and Public Cloud such as AWS resources to be managed from a single pane of glass. Next-Gen managed services requires such a platform as part of their tooling strategy to offer end to end lifecycle management capabilities.

DevOps Lifecycle management – With the demands for increased frequency of application releases to help enterprises quickly differentiate their services to their end customers, the need for DevOps has become more critical than ever. The DevOps lifecycle which was historically part of SDLC, is now becoming a critical process that integrates into the Next-Gen managed services through the CI/CD pipeline. With public Cloud providers such as AWS, tools such as AWS CodePipeline help with defining the CI/CD workflows using AWS tools such as CodeBuild and CodeDeploy. Enterprise customers also have choices such as Jenkins, Octopus and other third party CI/CD tools which integrate with public cloud providers such as AWS.

Availability & Performance Monitoring of dynamic workloads – With cloud resources being dynamic in nature, traditional availability and performance monitoring tools do not have the ability to manage non-static environments. A new breed of tools are needed to manage such cloud resources using non-traditional techniques like agents. Public cloud providers such as AWS provide native tools like CloudWatch that collect metrics, logs & events from over 70 AWS services to help monitor the availability and performance of application and infrastructure. These tools are critical when monitoring workloads that use serverless computing like AWS Lambda. In addition there are 3rd party tools, such as Datadog, that help monitor Public Cloud services such as AWS and others.

Cloud Usage and Cost Management – One of the most important aspect of Next-Gen managed services is Cloud governance and specifically around usage and cost management. If left un-managed, there is a risk of increased cloud costs. The onus of managing these escalating cloud costs is on the managed service providers, and they need tools that can effective help understand the usage and cost of services such as AWS and provide recommendations around how to optimize it using various options that include changing the billing options, capacity (allocated) optimization options, time of day usage options, etc. Tools such as Cloudchekr help Next-Gen managed service providers to optimize the cloud usage and spend with Cloud services like AWS. This helps customers to maximize the benefits of cloud and increase the long term adoption and confidence.

Automation - While automation is a critical component of services delivered on Cloud, Next-Gen managed services is dependent on a strong automation platform that will drive self managed IT services. This requires AIOps and Orchestration tools that can intelligently identify service events and failures and use orchestrators to remediate and/or resolve them. Tech Mahindra’s AIOps platform, TACTiX, and its AIOps Visualization platform, Fixstream, offer these capabilities and can work with private and public cloud environments such as AWS.

About Author

Santhana Krishna (SK), AWS Principal Architect

Santhana Krishna brings with him over 17 years of rich experience in the IT Industry spread across various services and functions. He helped customers in designing and building efficient solutions for Cloud Infrastructure, Devops and Next Gen IT Infrastructure.

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