Cloud Management Platform: What you need to know
Now, when cloud adoption is popular and wide-ranging, complexities in handling the resources, their cost, security, and compliances would certainly exist. And to cope with them, there are Cloud Management Platforms (CMPs). What is a Cloud Management Platform and why is it important? What are some of the popular CMPs out there? Let’s have a quick discussion about CMPs and associated factors.
What is a Cloud Management Platform?
A cloud management platform or “CMP” is software designed to combine a set of features or modules together, thereby allowing for the management of multiple types of cloud environments in a single interface. CMPs are essential for businesses storing data in several locations and mediums, since, without a CMP, each storage array must be managed individually. However, as strategically integrated products, CMPs provide a solution that allows for the management of data across platforms.
How CMPs work
Modern CMPs extend the traditional IT infrastructure. This provides IT with a “variable compute strategy” that dramatically increases the flexibility and speed of delivering digital services. The key is to automate all services across complex environments.
No developer wants to be locked into a subset of the infrastructure types that may be required to solve a problem optimally. At a bare minimum, new clouds must be able to access all the physical and virtual infrastructure within an organization, such as:
- Windows, AIX, or mainframe
- Hypervisors like vSphere, KVM, and Hyper-V
- Public clouds including Azure, AWS, and GCP
If clouds themselves don’t do this, a good CMP just might.
What are the benefits of a Cloud Management Platform?
Introducing a CMP to your enterprise can bring several advantages to your enterprise. Users may be able to work with their cloud environment successfully; however, if they aren’t managing their cloud resources, their company could be incurring potentially high costs. Reasons to integrate a cloud management platform include:
Most CMP solutions support self-service cloud resource management. This means that enterprises can provide resources for their cloud environment themselves rather than being delivered a set amount of resources. A CMP can help you determine if you are using the optimal amount of resources for your business needs. That can help you determine the correct amount of resources to request from your cloud provider in the future.
Cloud cost management
The biggest reason why enterprises want to manage their resource usage is to reduce costs. Resources that you aren’t using will just be a drain on your company’s finances. By managing your cloud operations to ensure that every resource is being used, you can optimize your cloud costs and reduce the amount of wasted spend.
Automated management policies
CMPs deliver automated cloud management policies and tasks to help utilize resources. A CMP platform is based on automatic orchestration; for example, it automates the process of finding spare resources on your network whenever you need them. Rather than waiting until your IT team discovers wasted resources, the CMP automatically fixes resource usage problems.
Why would an Enterprise need a CMP?
An enterprise might be running a multi-cloud environment, having all services in place, and getting the required input. But still, they need a cloud management platform. Why?
The need to have a CMP varies from enterprise to enterprise. Here are some of the common problems for which enterprises usually need a CMP:
When multi-cloud services are deployed, automation is the key to maintaining a balance between all the services. When cloud automation is applied, it reduces the manual work associated with workload management. Automation ultimately improves efficiency, accelerates the speed of deployment, and reduces the chances of human error that can bring down an application. CMPs help in the orchestration of services thereby helping to automate processes, and workloads, and manage services.
These days, cloud attacks are less destructive than on-premise attacks. During a local attack, the entire infrastructure gets affected while in the case of cloud attacks, only a single or a few services are misconfigured.
Nonetheless, that doesn’t mean that cloud services are safe. When multiple services are running from different managed cloud services, security becomes a concern. Configuration management, improved logging & access management, and automated security updates are some of the ways cloud security system is maintained. With CMPs, maintaining cloud security becomes a standard process, which is automated and less prone to vulnerabilities.
The cost of cloud services can shoot up, if not managed well. That is why it is important to adopt short-term and long-term cost optimization strategies to keep the multi-cloud budgets in line. Right from choosing the right provider to the right services and resources, there is a lot to do with the cost management of cloud services. Cloud management platforms provide chargeback reports and forecast future reports to curb unnecessary costs.
Cloud monitoring involves practices that check for the workload and various parameters that are related to it. Monitoring helps in keeping a check on the significant vitals of the cloud account so that any abnormality is informed on time and informed actions are taken against it.
Once a Cloud Management Platform is deployed, it helps enterprises to manage and optimize various aspects related to cloud services. Therefore, if multi-cloud services are there, opting for CMPs is definitely a great idea.
As businesses grow, multi-cloud environments become hard to manage. A cloud management platform manages multi-cloud services and resources. It ensures high productivity by unifying your IT into a single self-service interface.
A CMP secures and manages data and applications in different cloud systems. It maintains the inventory of available cloud resources. IT Teams pay only for the resources used. Overall, the cloud management platform is an excellent solution to manage multiple clouds.