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Observability in the Omdia Universe

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Cliff Oberholtzer
Cliff Oberholtzer

The Omdia Universe: Selecting a Hybrid and Multicloud Management Solution, 2022–23 report from global research leader Omdia is out, and it shares some perspectives for enterprise operations teams. One is that “monitoring” and “observability” have distinct identities and need to be considered both individually and in tandem. Another is that both are key to keeping your entire infrastructure environment running smoothly across the hybrid multicloud universe. Omdia also included a review of NetApp® BlueXP with NetApp Cloud Insights as a part of the overall NetApp solution, which is detailed in the Put NetApp BlueXP on your shortlist for hybrid and multicloud blog. Here, we’re examining the monitoring and observability criteria section of the report.

To level-set, I’m sure that everyone understands what monitoring is, but observability is a newer term, and might not be as well understood. Is “observability” just another name for monitoring? The short answer is no. Both are needed to give an accurate overall picture of the state of your environment. Monitoring collects data and metrics about your environment, whereas observability interprets the data and puts it into context. Monitoring is like the traffic alert system that tells you that there’s an accident on the tollway, an opening of a bridge, or gridlock due to congestion—basically that an event occurred. Observability gives you the picture of what’s leading up to events like this, tells you why they happened, and can direct you toward a resolution (and help you prevent another event). In today’s world, both are needed to give an accurate overall picture of the state of your environment and to prevent issues that can bring your business crashing to a halt.

And the chances for issues increase exponentially as you introduce different environments across the hybrid and multicloud dimensions.

Hybrid multicloud is the norm

Hybrid multicloud environments are the new normal. In fact, according to one analyst firm, 89% of organizations already employ a multicloud strategy, and 80% of those organizations continue to use on-premises infrastructure as well (that is, hybrid multicloud). As laid out in the Omdia report, providing a unified approach to monitoring and observability across the entire hybrid multicloud is essential to managing and protecting your entire environment. The observability component of the NetApp solution in the report is centered on NetApp Cloud Insights, which delivers hybrid multicloud monitoring and observability as software as a service (SaaS). For ease of use, all infrastructure metrics and their visualization are normalized into a consistent view across your hybrid multicloud landscape, regardless of the equipment or its location. No specialized teams, skillsets, tools, frameworks, or processes are required to support the different cloud environments, resource types, storage types, and so on. Simplicity becomes the norm: On a single dashboard, you can see and compare metrics across all clouds and on-premises data centers simultaneously—and use that to guide you to the optimum performance and availability for your money.

Cloud Insights and BlueXP

Although it’s delivered as a standalone service, Cloud Insights also powers the observability capabilities in BlueXP, NetApp’s unified control plane that simplifies hybrid multicloud management. BlueXP allows you to discover, deploy, manage, and optimize both infrastructure and data across on-premises and cloud environments by offering additional data services (protection, governance, compliance, mobility, and so on) that go far beyond the monitoring and observability of the Omdia report. In fact, the report notes the combination of BlueXP and Cloud Insights, because it’s this integrated approach that enables you to optimize both performance and uptime, while reducing risk, cost, and downtime. And isn’t that the real objective of hybrid multicloud infrastructure management?

A best-in-class solution

We like how Omdia summed up this powerful combination of capabilities: “If you’re not already considering NetApp BlueXP as a best-in-class hybrid and multicloud management solution, you should.” Using the BlueXP unified control plane offers a simple, comprehensive way to manage complex hybrid and multicloud environments, and it provides an easy launch point for advanced capabilities and services. This includes the ability to tap into the Cloud Insights service, which earned Omdia’s highest ranking in the report for monitoring and observability capabilities. Cloud Insights serves an essential role in keeping your hybrid multicloud storage and compute environment running optimally— regardless of whether you access it as a standalone service or through the integrated BlueXP service.

Cliff Oberholtzer

Cliff Oberholtzer has been in technology since his youth starting by building his own radios as a hobby, then transitioning to repairing early computer systems before moving into quality engineering then finding his home in product marketing and management. He enjoys bowling, old movies and walking with his four-legged friends. Cliff got his start with a technical degree that was fueled by his passion for technology. Cliff has worked with the needs of data centers and clouds with many monitoring, compute, network, and storage technologies including their disaster recovery needs. Cliff is currently the Product Marketing Manager for Cloud Insights for NetApp.

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