What can the cloud do for me? - Interview with Eli Almog


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AppFirst recently sat down with Eli Almog, a thought leader in the application performance management space. Eli formerly served in the office of the CTO at BMC. In our discussion, he goes over how to prepare to migrate to the cloud, and what to do once you’re there.

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What can the cloud do for me? - Interview with Eli Almog

  1. 1.          http://www.appfirst.com/cloud-­‐channel          What can thecloud do for me?An interview with Eli Almog,formerly in the office of the CTO at BMC. Collect    |    Aggregate    |    Correlate    
  2. 2. http://www.appfirst.com/cloud-­‐channel         Executive Summary • What exactly is the cloud and what are the benefits of cloud computing? • How do I know which cloud environment to move to? • What do I need to do before moving to the cloud? • Once my application is moved to the cloud, what do I do next? • Conclusion About AppFirst is the leading SaaS-based application problem resolution service designed to provide mid-market application architects and DevOps complete visibility into their applications across the entire application stack. AppFirst is an agnostic solution, supporting a wide range of applications, regardless of language, application type or location (cloud, physical or virtual servers) and incorporates its patent-pending Miss Nothing Data capability. This unique feature is designed to provide clear insight into executing applications and quickly correlate with other data sources, allowing a proactive approach where IT professionals can see changes before they become problems, reduce customer churn, and drive down the cost of operations. Founded in 2009, AppFirst is a New York City-based company backed by top- tier venture capital investors, including Javelin Venture Partners, FirstMark Capital and First Round Capital. For more information, visit www.appfirst.com. Follow us on Twitter @appfirst, or subscribe to the AppFirst blog to stay up-to- date on the latest AppFirst news.     Collect    |    Aggregate    |    Correlate   Page 2  
  3. 3. http://www.appfirst.com/cloud-­‐channel         AppFirst  recently  sat  down  with  Eli  Almog,  a  thought  leader  in  the   application  performance  management  space.  Eli  formerly  served  in  the   office  of  the  CTO  at  BMC.  In  our  discussion,  he  goes  over  how  to   prepare  to  migrate  to  the  cloud,  and  what  to  do  once  you’re  there.      What   e xactly   i s   t he   c loud   a nd   w hat   a re   t he  benefits   o f   c loud   c omputing?    The  most  basic  thing  you  need  to   mechanism  where  one  can  allocate  define  when  you  talk  about  the   resources  quickly.  The  goal  behind  “cloud”  is  what  the  cloud  really  is.   that  is  to  get  better  overall  Generally,  when  people  hear  the   utilization  from  the  compute  power.  word  “cloud”  they  think  it  means   In  today’s  organizations,  a  typical  hosting  their  application  outside   physical  environment  utilizes  about  their  firewall.  And  some   15%  CPU.  Cloud  computing  and  organizations  aren’t  ready  for  that.   virtualization  gives  you  the  ability  to  You  don’t  want  to  use  umbrella   create  a  “mini-­‐container”  in  the  form  terminology  because  you  lose  the   of  virtual  machines  that  can  fit  on  a  attention  of  a  big  part  of  the   shared  device(s),  giving  you  much  community  that’s  not  ready  to  host   better  utilization  from  physical  their  application  outside  of  their   hardware  (around  50-­‐70%  CPU  firewall.  You  really  need  to  look  at  it   utilization).  This  number  will  through  the  eyes  of  virtualization:   fluctuate,  but  it  depends  on  the  private  cloud  (on-­‐premises,  behind   organization  and  how  aggressive  your  firewall),  public  cloud   they  want  to  be  in  the  cloud.  This  (computing  resources  shared  among   means,  for  the  very  first  time,  you  multiple  customers)  or  a  hybrid   can  really  get  the  most  out  of  your  solution.   infrastructure.  And  in  terms  of  a     public  cloud,  having  dynamic  access  At  a  very  high  level,  the  cloud  is   to  resources  is  very  compelling.  leveraging  automation  and   In  addition  to  optimizing  CPU  virtualization  by  providing  a   utilization,  another  major  benefit  of   Collect    |    Aggregate    |    Correlate   Page 3  
  4. 4. http://www.appfirst.com/cloud-­‐channel        moving  to  a  cloud  environment  is   provider  is  giving  you).  The  whole  that  you  pay  as  you  use.  You  don’t   idea  of  usage-­‐based  pricing  and  buy  a  box  and  get  stuck  paying  for  it   charge  backs,  (which  is  information  when  it’s  not  in  use.  You  buy   that  can  come  from  the  monitoring  compute  power  and  pay  for  the  time   infrastructure),  is  critical  to  ensure  that  it’s  up  and  running  (based  on   your  engagement  in  cloud  services  is  whatever  measurement  the  cloud   economically  sound.      How   d o   I   k now   w hich   c loud   e nvironment   t o  move   t o?    There  are  three  ways  you  can  move   For  example,  based  on  the  into  a  cloud  environment.  You  can   functionality  point  of  view,  some  opt  for  a  private  cloud,  a  public   people  will  tell  you  not  to  put  heavy  cloud,  or  a  hybrid.  This  decision  is   I/O  activity  in  the  cloud.  So  one  way  based  on  your  organization’s  needs   to  handle  this  situation  is  by  splitting  and  the  needs  of  your  application.   up  your  application  architecture  with  Some  components  of  your   a  hybrid  solution.  There  could  be  application  are  better  staying  on   parts  of  your  application  architecture  physical  servers  than  moving  to  the   that  need  to  be  on  physical  cloud.     infrastructure,  such  as  an  area  that     requires  I/O  from  physical  storage.   While  you  keep  your  heavy  I/O   activity  on  physical  boxes,  the   subsystems  of  your  application  that   are  CPU  or  memory  heavy  could  be   moved  to  the  cloud.         Collect    |    Aggregate    |    Correlate   Page 4  
  5. 5. http://www.appfirst.com/cloud-­‐channel        What   d o   I   n eed   t o   d o   b efore   m oving   t o   t he   c loud?    Once  you’ve  defined  what  the  cloud   servers  that  sit  behind  a  load  really  is,  the  next  thing  you  need  to   balancer,  another  five  or  ten  take  into  consideration  is  that  in   application  servers,  and  connections  order  to  move  to  the  cloud  with   to  one  or  two  databases.  Because  minimal  risk,  you  need  to  fully   app  stacks  are  so  much  more  understand  your  entire  application   complex  than  they  used  to  be,  you  stack  and  your  overall  application   really  have  the  make  sure  you’re  workload.  You  need  to  be  able  to   looking  at  the  complete  safely  say  to  yourself:   environment.      “Yes,  I  can  share  resources   The  only  way  to  do  that  is  to  make  with  other  applications  and   sure  you  have  the  right  application   performance  management  solution  I  don’t  need  to  have  my   in  place  and  the  right  measurements  own  physical  device,   of  your  physical  environment.  That  because  I  have  some  level   way,  you  have  clear  definitions  and  of  guarantee  that  I’ll   descriptions  of  how  your  application   performs.  If  you  have  the  right  always  have  the  resources  I   monitoring  tool  and  you  have  the  want.  And  if  I  want  or  need   right  measurements  of  your  more  resources,  I  can  get   application  behavior,  you  can  right-­‐them  fairly  quickly.”   size  what  you  need.      Nowadays,  when  you  talk  about   This  is  all  about  confidence.  Once  applications,  it  doesn’t  necessarily   you  fully  understand  your  application  mean  one  process  on  one  box.   and  how  it  runs  now,  you  can  feel  Applications  today  have  multiple   much  more  comfortable  moving  to  tiers,  and  each  tier  might  have   the  cloud  because  you  know  what  different  instances.  For  example,  you   you  need  in  order  to  feel  safe.  could  have  four,  five,  even  ten  web     Collect    |    Aggregate    |    Correlate   Page 5  
  6. 6. http://www.appfirst.com/cloud-­‐channel        Once   m y   a pplication   i s   m oved   t o   t he   c loud,   w hat  do   I   d o   n ext?    After  you  migrate  and  feel   Even  worse  is  that  this  changes  comfortable  that  everything’s   throughout  the  day.  Your  application  running  well  in  your  new  world,  you   could  be  running  just  fine  at  9  AM,  need  to  continuously  monitor  and   but  be  significantly  impacted  at  2  understand  your  applications’  overall   PM,  because  your  neighbor’s  performance  and  behavior  because   resource  requirements  increased,  and  change  is  always  happening.   that  means  your  application  is     getting  less  resources  than  it  was.  Now  you’re  in  a  situation  where    you’re  sharing  resources  with  several   Some  of  the  resources  you  once  had  other  virtual  machines.  Their   full  control  of,  you  no  longer  have.  behavior  is  something  you  don’t   When  you  had  your  own  physical  box,  know  and  have  no  control  over.  If  all   you  didn’t  share  it  with  anybody.  So  of  a  sudden  your  “neighbor’s”   when  there  were  problems  on  the  application  requires  a  lot  of  memory,   box,  the  only  one  to  blame  was  you  your  application’s  memory  needs   and  your  application.  No  one  else  may  be  impacted.  The  cloud  vendors   was  using  your  resources.  So,  in  don’t  provide  this  level  of  visibility  to   essence,  while  cloud  technology  is  you;  you  need  to  be  on  top  of  it   making  your  life  easier  in  terms  of  yourself.  And  just  because  a  cloud   resource  utilization  management,  all  provider  says  you  are  getting  certain   the  monitoring  problems  you  had  in  bandwidth,  for  instance,  you  might   the  past  get  magnified.  not  be  getting  it  all  the  time.  You’re    sharing  the  physical  network  with   For  instance,  as  a  customer  of  a  others.  So  if  you  have  what  is  known   cloud  environment  or  a  cloud  as  a  "noisy  neighbor,"  your   monitoring  solution,  you  need  to  application  can  suffer  considerably.   know  your  data  is  secure  and  Your  neighbor  could  be  "hogging"  all   unexposed.  You  need  to  know  if  your  the  resources.   providers  are  truly  multi-­‐tenant  and     that  your  data  is  completely  invisible   Collect    |    Aggregate    |    Correlate   Page 6  
  7. 7. http://www.appfirst.com/cloud-­‐channel        to  others.   You  need  to  be  smart  and  efficient.     But  most  importantly,  you  need  to  Today,  it’s  not  just  about  moving  to   have  the  data  to  truly  know  the  the  cloud.  It’s  about  moving  to  the   resources  your  application  needs  to  cloud  and  monitoring  your  cloud   deliver  a  great  customer  experience  applications  thoroughly  to  ensure   and  save  money.  you  are  running  at  peak  performance.      Conclusion:    Although  the  cloud  might  be  the  right  environment  for  your  application,  you  need  to  be  thoughtful  about  it.  You  need  to  ensure  you  have  complete  visibility  into  your  application,  understand  what  it  means,  and  be  constantly  watching  your  environment  for  changes.   Collect    |    Aggregate    |    Correlate   Page 7