13 Cloud Monitoring Tools to Ensure Optimal Cloud Performance and Drive Business Success

Ensuring the smooth operation of your cloud infrastructure is not just a necessity—it’s a competitive advantage. As businesses increasingly move their operations to the cloud, the importance of keeping an eye on performance, detecting issues, and troubleshooting in real-time is more important than ever. That’s where cloud monitoring tools come into the picture.

Cloud monitoring tools serve as the eyes and ears for your business in the cloud. They offer real-time visibility into your infrastructure, applications, and services that are running in the cloud. They not only monitor and provide insightful data, but also help identify trends, analyze performance, and detect potential problems before they can impact your operations.

There are many cloud monitoring solutions on the market, but they’re not all created equal. The best cloud monitoring solutions enable companies to effectively manage their cloud environments and maintain operational efficiency, providing visibility into resource utilization, performance levels, and any issues. This article dives into the world of cloud monitoring tools, outlining what to look for in a cloud monitoring tool and sharing 11 of the top cloud monitoring tools currently on the market.

How to assess a cloud monitoring tool for your business

Choosing the right cloud monitoring tool can be the difference between staying ahead of issues or constantly playing catch-up. It’s about choosing a tool that fits your business needs, aligns with your cloud monitoring strategy, and offers the right balance of features, ease of use, and scalability.

The best cloud monitoring tools can provide a complete overview of your cloud environment, improve decision-making, increase operational efficiency, and ultimately, save costs. Opt for a tool that’s suited to your company’s specific needs, taking into account factors like budget, scalability, ease of use, and integration with third-party tools.

Here are some key features to look for in your next cloud monitoring tool:

  • Comprehensiveness of monitoring. Look for tools that provide a comprehensive, real-time view of your entire cloud infrastructure, including servers, databases, applications, and network performance.
  • Integration and compatibility. The tool should be compatible with your cloud platforms and able to integrate seamlessly with other systems in your organization.
  • Scalability and flexibility. As your business grows, your cloud monitoring tool should be able to scale and adjust to your evolving needs without performance degradation. This is particularly important if you have multi cloud environments or a hybrid cloud infrastructure.
  • Alerting and reporting. A good tool will provide real-time alerts based on your set conditions and should offer automated, customizable reports for key insights into system health and potential issues.
  • User-friendly interface. The interface should be easy to navigate, with visual data representations and customizable views to facilitate quick decision-making.
  • Security features. Choose tools that monitor for security threats and possibly integrate with existing security information and event management (SIEM) systems.
  • Cost management. Some cloud monitoring tools include features to help track your cloud spend, providing recommendations for cost savings and alerts for potential cost overruns.
  • Customer support and community. Tools that offer robust customer support, regular updates, and an active user community can provide valuable assistance and share best practices when needed.

Cloud service provider built-in monitoring tools

Built-in cloud monitoring tools are an integral part of your cloud infrastructure monitoring, designed to seamlessly track performance within their respective environments. The key benefit of using these tools lies in their native integration, which allows for optimal performance tracking, ease of use, and streamlined troubleshooting within the specific cloud platform.

1. DigitalOcean Monitoring and Uptime

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DigitalOcean Monitoring is a free service for DigitalOcean users that collects data regarding resource use at the Droplet level. With the capability to create tailored metrics alert policies and the convenience of integrated notifications through email and Slack, it offers enhanced Droplet visualization tools that help maintain a pulse on your infrastructure’s performance and well-being.

DigitalOcean Uptime is a service that can help you monitor the uptime and latency of your resources and websites. It alerts you to endpoint issues across DigitalOcean’s four global regions with checks at one-minute intervals, customizable down to one millisecond of latency detection. Uptime enables you to detect latency, downtime, or approaching SSL expiry, making it easier to deliver the best app or website experience for your customers.

2. AWS CloudWatch

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AWS CloudWatch offers a comprehensive cloud monitoring solution for resources and applications across Amazon Web Services, on-premises, and other cloud environments. With advanced visualization tools, automated alarms, integration with other AWS services, and dashboards providing actionable insights, CloudWatch simplifies the task of maintaining your infrastructure and applications.

3. Microsoft Azure Monitor

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Microsoft Azure Monitor provides a holistic cloud monitoring solution, enabling collection, analysis, and response to telemetry from cloud and on-premises environments, aiming to optimize the availability and performance of your applications and services. It aggregates data across your system, offering correlations and analysis using a common set of tools, automatic responses to system events, and integration with third-party systems and tools. It also supports diverse resource types and custom sources through its APIs.

4. Google Cloud Operations

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Google Cloud Operations, formerly known as Stackdriver, offers an integrated solution for monitoring, logging, and tracing applications and systems on Google Cloud platform and beyond. Features include real-time log management and analysis, metrics observability at scale, a stand-alone managed service for Prometheus, and Application Performance Management that combines monitoring and troubleshooting capabilities, all aimed to improve performance, uptime, and overall health of cloud-powered applications.

Third-party cloud monitoring tools

Third-party cloud monitoring tools offer a versatile solution that can span across various cloud platforms and environments. These tools stand out for their extensive features, customization capabilities, and the ability to provide a holistic view of your multi-cloud or hybrid cloud infrastructures, making them an ideal choice for businesses operating in diverse cloud environments.

5. Datadog

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Datadog’s infrastructure performance monitoring offers a SaaS-based platform that provides extensive metrics, visualizations, and alerts to optimize cloud or hybrid environments. It features comprehensive technology coverage, tag-based analytics, machine learning–based alert tools, real-time performance insights, advanced metric collection capabilities, and an intuitive interface that enhances communication and troubleshooting, all while reducing the need for extensive training or professional services.

6. AppDynamics

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AppDynamics is a comprehensive cloud-native platform that focuses on application observability, ensuring businesses can provide outstanding user experiences that align with their digital strategies. The platform equips users with tools to visualize and track the entire technology stack’s performance, linking technical metrics with business outcomes. This full-stack perspective allows end users to promptly identify and resolve any issues, mitigating potential impacts on business performance.

7. New Relic

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New Relic is an advanced full-stack observability platform designed to empower engineers in planning, building, deploying, and running software efficiently. The platform provides a unified interface for all telemetry data—metrics, events, logs, and traces, thus creating a single source of truth for your entire system. Along with data collection, New Relic also offers powerful analysis tools which help to identify issues quickly and accelerate the troubleshooting process. It facilitates seamless integration into existing workflows and includes artificial intelligence assistance for more effective problem resolution.

8. Prometheus

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Prometheus is a leading open-source monitoring solution that provides dimensional data modeling, powerful query capabilities via PromQL, efficient storage, and precise alerting, enhancing your metrics and alerting operations. Its operational simplicity and integration with various visualization tools like Grafana, numerous client libraries for easy service instrumentation, and robust alerting based on flexible PromQL provide a comprehensive solution for generating insights from metrics in an easy-to-deploy package.

9. Dynatrace

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Dynatrace is an analytics and automation platform, powered by AI, that simplifies cloud complexity and allows for faster and more secure innovation. The platform offers full-stack monitoring with automatic and intelligent observability across cloud and hybrid environments, enabling continuous auto-discovery of hosts, VMs, serverless, cloud services, containers and Kubernetes, networks, devices, logs, events, and more.

10. PagerDuty

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PagerDuty is a platform designed for automating, orchestrating, and accelerating responses across your digital infrastructure during critical moments. It offers features like on-call management, automated incident response, machine learning for operations improvement, process automation, and the ability to engage customer service and cross-functional teams, all aimed at optimizing operations and allowing developers to focus more on their code.

11. Splunk

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Splunk is a unified security and observability platform designed to make digital systems more secure and resilient. It offers features such as advanced threat detection for early incident prevention, actionable analytics for risk mitigation, and capabilities to restore services quickly during outages, all aimed at helping security, IT, and DevOps teams adapt, innovate, and deliver for their customers.

12. Grafana

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Grafana is a versatile visualization and observability platform, enabling users to query, visualize, and get alerts on data from a variety of sources across their technology and business operations. With features like a scalable metrics backend, high-scale distributed tracing, multi-tenant log aggregation, performance testing, and an extensive array of plugins, Grafana facilitates comprehensive monitoring across logs, metrics, applications, and infrastructure.

13. Elastic Stack

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Elastic Stack, comprising Elasticsearch, Kibana, Beats, and Logstash, is a powerful search platform designed to securely and reliably take data from any source, in any format for searching, analyzing, and visualizing. It offers fast, scalable data storage and search, real-time data exploration with visualizations in Kibana, and integrations for ingesting data from diverse sources, with the flexibility of deployment on various cloud platforms or on-premise.

Managing cloud-based infrastructure is integral to business operations. Effective use of cloud infrastructure monitoring tools, both automated and manual, enables businesses to gain valuable insights into their application performance. These tools provide the ability to capture key performance metrics and conduct in-depth business metrics analysis, which ultimately drives better decision-making and operational efficiency.

Monitoring isn’t solely about the health of operating systems or cloud resources; it’s about ensuring your overall system aligns with your business goals. The right monitoring tools can become an invaluable ally in maintaining optimal performance and maximizing the benefits of your cloud journey.

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