Virtualization Management

Virtualization Management covers all aspects of managing a modern virtual or software defined data center. This includes managing across virtualization platforms and clouds, monitoring the performance and availability of the virtualization platforms (hypervisors) and the clouds, monitoring the capacity of the virtualization platforms and clouds, (Read More)

monitoring the performance of the applications running on these platforms and clouds, automatically provisioning these environments, securing these environments, and ensuring that the data in these environments is always protected and available.

News: Splunk Announces Splunk App for Stream

PerformanceManagementSplunk acquired Cloudmeter back in December 2013. Splunk App for Stream is the result of this acquisition. It gives Splunk customers the ability to parse network data and add that data to their Splunk datastores.

The Splunk App for Stream

The Splunk App for Stream consists of two components. An agent sits inside of the network stack of the operating system (Windows or Linux). All network traffic for that operating system instance passes through this agent, and it can capture any portion of that traffic and forward it to the Splunk datastore. The second component is a user interface that allows the user to specify the application from which to collect data and the fields within that stream for that application to capture. This is crucial to avoid overloading the Splunk datastore with the most voluminous type of data (wire data) and to avoid overrunning the license limits on the Splunk installation. As Leena Joshi, Splunk’s senior director of solutions marketing, explained:

“The Splunk App for Stream, the first product delivered from our acquisition of Cloudmeter last year, is a new approach that magnifies the Operational Intelligence organizations can gain with Splunk software…Unlike traditional and appliance-based solutions, which are difficult to deploy, especially in public cloud infrastructures, the Splunk App for Stream can be added to gain immediate wire data access on-premises or in public, private or hybrid cloud infrastructures. It opens up for our customers a whole new class of data sets to correlate for additional IT, security and business insights.”

The Application Performance Management, IT operations management, and security use cases for Splunk App for Stream are summarized as follows:

Application Management
IT Operations Management

Where (and Where Not) to Use the Splunk App for Stream

The amount of wire data and Splunk’s pricing per amount of data ingested per day will make it prohibitively expensive to just dump all of the wire data from your hundreds or thousands of servers directly into your Splunk datastore. The good news is that Splunk gives you a very fine-grained way to control this with the user interface for Stream. However, the need and the ability to control the amount of data you ask App for Stream to collect and send to the datastore drives the use cases for this app. For example:

  • If you have a very small number of custom-developed applications that are critical to your business, and you know enough about them (since you built them) to know what data fields to expect on the wire, you can configure App for Stream to capture only the critical fields related to those critical applications. If you have hundreds or thousands of applications that are a mixture of purchased and custom-developed applications, then you need an AA-IPM solution, like those profiled in “Who’s Who in Application Performance Management for the SDDC and Cloud.”
  • If you are in IT Operations, App for Stream could be a valuable complement to Splunk’s App for VMware and the Apps for Citrix. If you know specific things represent problems in the network, you can set up App for Stream to look for them ahead of time, instead of running a trace and looking through a mountain of data after the fact.
  • The same holds true for security. If you know ahead of time what kind of an event on the network is associated with a security threat, you can set up App for Stream to find these for you instead of waiting for the event to happen and then doing a search.

This announcement also signals an important shift in strategy for Splunk. Prior to App for Stream, Splunk only collected data from management interfaces like syslog, SNMP, WMI, vSphere API, etc. Now Splunk has taken the extra step of collecting unique and valuable data that only vendors who specialize in this type of data collection provide. One can only speculate as to where this will lead.

Links to more information about Splunk App for Stream:


The Splunk App for Stream adds configurable slices of wire data to the Splunk datastore. This is a valuable additional source of data, but it is not on its own a complete network-based application performance, IT operations management, or security solution.

Gigaom Structure: Hyperscale Cloud Innovation

CloudComputingAttending Gigaom Structure was an exercise in getting fire-hosed with the leading edge innovation that public cloud providers are bringing to their customers worldwide. These innovations not only will have a profound effect on public cloud computing, but also will ultimately impact data center architectures, costs, and benefits worldwide.

Continue reading Gigaom Structure: Hyperscale Cloud Innovation

Interview with Marten Mickos, CEO of Eucalyptus

CloudComputingOur position that OpenStack is dead, both as a public cloud platform and as a private cloud platform, provoked a discussion with Eucalyptus CEO Marten Mickos about Eucalyptus’s role in the public cloud–hybrid cloud–private cloud continuum. Following is an edited transcript of our email interview with Mickos.

Continue reading Interview with Marten Mickos, CEO of Eucalyptus

Does OpenStack Have a Future in the Private/Hybrid Cloud?

ITasaServiceIn “Is OpenStack Dead,” we focused on OpenStack’s future as a public cloud platform. We concluded that Amazon, Microsoft, Google, and VMware would dominate public cloud computing through complete economic and technical control of their stacks. We further concluded that OpenStack would have to be free to cloud computing vendors in order for them to have a financially competitive offering, and further, that IBM, HP, Rackspace, and Red Hat do not have an economic incentive to invest in creating a free cloud platform for service providers worldwide.

Continue reading Does OpenStack Have a Future in the Private/Hybrid Cloud?

Amazon Invites VMware Customers to the Party

BusinessAgilityAmazon recently announced the new AWS Management Portal for VMware’s vCenter, which is detailed in this blog post. This is yet another step in Amazon’s quest to land more enterprise workloads in its industry-leading public cloud infrastructure. While Amazon continues to dominate public cloud workloads, VMware is a serious player in the private cloud space due to its 56% share of the enterprise virtualization market.

Continue reading Amazon Invites VMware Customers to the Party

Will Helion Save or Destroy HP?

CloudComputingHP has announced Helion, its next-generation public cloud offering. Based on the Icehouse version of OpenStack, Helion includes substantial additions from HP, including a PaaS layer based on Pivotal CF (Pivotal Cloud Foundry). HP also announced a free community edition that is limited to thirty servers. This will prove an interesting test of whether any vendor can build a credible competitor to Amazon Web Services around OpenStack.  Continue reading Will Helion Save or Destroy HP?