GigaOm Radar for Cloud Management Platforms – Gigaom

Table of Contents

  1. Summary
  2. Market Categories and Deployment Types
  3. Key Criteria Comparison
  4. GigaOm Radar
  5. Vendor Insights
  6. Analyst’s Take
  7. About Michael Delzer
  8. About Farhad Sayeed
  9. About GigaOm
  10. Copyright

Summary

Cloud management platforms (CMPs) enable organizations to automate and manage applications across multiple environments. A CMP’s ability to track services at a high level is critical to the multi-year management needs of organizations deploying applications in hybrid and multi-cloud environments.

Hybrid clouds are either the end goal or a transition method to get to a cloud-only hosting model. A CPM vendor that can manage your on-premises automation and orchestration needs as well as the cloud hosting provides a greater value than separate tools that only do either on-premises or public cloud deployments.

More comprehensive CMP vendors also manage storage, security, disaster recovery, system health and performance, and application lifecycle management. These are just a few examples of the functions that must now be managed across multiple planes while accounting for multiple, and often differing, requirements—e.g., cloud vs. on-premises, hardware vs. software, ephemeral vs. persistent storage.

As organizations move more applications to the cloud, the need for a high-level “single view” of the entire infrastructure becomes critical to ensure uptime and high performance without compromising data mobility and security. A new role of cloud operations manager has evolved to oversee hybrid cloud deployments using CMPs. This role has evolved as a superset of responsibilities that include any lower-level roles that manage a cloud contract or data center.

There are three aspects to total cloud management:

  1. Automation = CMP
  2. Application performance optimization = Cloud Resource Optimization
  3. Financial accountability = FinOps

This report focuses on the automation of cloud management platforms needed to support application deployments.

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Figure 1: Three Aspects of Total Cloud Management

As hybrid cloud deployments are the new norm, businesses of every size are leveraging CMPs to streamline cloud migration and ongoing operational needs. Though these types of infrastructures introduce more complexity, they also create more

opportunities to deliver value, primarily by using best-of-breed solutions.

Previously, essential functions such as asset tracking and dependency maps ran in data centers with redundancy to mitigate fallout from environmental outages and ensure elevated levels of uptime. The move to cloud requires a new paradigm, however, in which “design for failure” becomes an application requirement and not the infrastructure mandate.

The fact is, today the hardware is ephemeral, and we can’t use a physical server’s asset tag to track where an application is running, which is how traditional management tools worked. The move to virtual machines (VMs) on-premises and now to the cloud means that the focus must be on the business problem or solution itself and that other attributes be treated as short-lived. CMPs can manage the types of storage and flag inconsistencies in deployment requests to policy governance to ensure the type of storage and the characteristics of storage match the business expectations and governance requirements.

A CMP’s ability to track services at a high level is critical to the multi-year management needs of IT as organizations move to hybrid and multiple clouds.

This report evaluates key vendors in the cloud management space and equips IT decision-makers with the information they need to select providers according to their specific needs. We analyze the vendors on a set of key criteria and evaluation metrics, which are described in-depth in the Key Criteria Report for Cloud Management Platforms.

How to Read this Report

This GigaOm report is one of a series of documents that helps IT organizations assess competing solutions in the context of well-defined features and criteria. For a fuller understanding consider reviewing the following reports:

Key Criteria report: A detailed market sector analysis that assesses the impact that key product features and criteria have on top-line solution characteristics—such as scalability, performance, and TCO—that drive purchase decisions.

GigaOm Radar report: A forward-looking analysis that plots the relative value and progression of vendor solutions along multiple axes based on strategy and execution. The Radar report includes a breakdown of each vendor’s offering in the sector.

Solution Profile: An in-depth vendor analysis that builds on the framework developed in the Key Criteria and Radar reports to assess a company’s engagement within a technology sector. This analysis includes forward-looking guidance around both strategy and product.