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Orion 2017.1 Feature: Cloud Infrastructure Monitoring

Updated: 4-4-2017

Cloud Infrastructure Monitoring provides visibility into your AWS cloud infrastructure including EC2 cloud instances and attached EBS volumes. This feature completes the Orion tools you need to monitor and administer on-premises, hybrid, and cloud environments.

Migrating your applications and services to the cloud gives you growing opportunities to distribute workloads, deliver applications, and expand resources for growing databases. Despite the ease of standing up cloud instances manually or through automation, your infrastructure can become difficult to map with lost resources or hidden instances in the sprawling environment.


Cloud Infrastructure Monitoring supports in-depth cloud instance and volume monitoring for the following:

Cloud Services

Amazon Web Services (AWS) EC2 instances and EBS volumes using Amazon APIs and Amazon CloudWatch data
The Orion server requires HTTPS protocol to communicate with Amazon Web Services APIs (CloudWatch, EC2, EBS) to collect metrics.

Orion Platform products
  • Server & Application Monitor (SAM) 6.4
  • Integrated Virtualization Manager (VMAN) 7.1 / Virtual Infrastructure Monitor (VIM) 7.1 and later

Getting started with Cloud Infrastructure Monitoring

With access to your cloud services account, SAM and VIM poll cloud service APIs for cloud metrics and status. This data aggregates and displays through the Orion Web Console to monitor, manage, and troubleshoot issues in your cloud environment:

  • Discover your EC2 cloud instances and EBS volumes in your cloud infrastructure
  • Automatically discover and monitor new cloud instances when launched from your cloud account
  • Provide a consolidated view for cloud, hybrid, virtual, and on-premises systems
  • Configure cloud alerts for cloud issues including AWS throttling, AWS exceeded limits, Orion cloud and global thresholds exceeded, polling issues, and health status
  • Manage global cloud monitoring threshold settings to indicate warning and critical thresholds
  • Poll for application and OS metrics on cloud instances using  application monitors and templates

On the SAM Summary Page, click the Getting Started: Monitor Cloud Instances resource to get set up.

A page displays with a walk-through of steps. Click Get Started to enter your AWS account access IDs.

You also should update your AWS IAM Account permissions. For all the details, permission JSON, and instructions, see Learn more about Amazon EC2 credentials for cloud monitoring.

The Add a Cloud Account to Monitor page opens with options to enter the AWS IAM Account IDs, a display name for SAM and integrated VMAN, and a description to better know which account you are using. Always test the account IDs before continuing.

The page also includes options for:

  • Automatic monitoring of cloud instances launched by the AWS account
  • Enable CloudWatch API polling (required for monitoring)
  • CloudWatch instance polling frequency (default 5 minutes)
  • Alerts for cloud monitoring (display if your Orion account limitations allow)

With your access IDs entered and tested, time to add AWS instances to monitor. Click Next to start filtering your AWS cloud instances for the account to select for cloud monitoring.

Click Save to start monitoring selected instances through the Cloud Summary.

Benefits and features

When managing cloud instances as nodes, SAM provides additional options to further manage cloud instances, applications, and OS:

  • Manage cloud applications and OS as nodes on cloud instance nodes. These nodes also display in the AppStack and Performance Analysis (PerfStack) for at-a-glance troubleshooting across your environment.
  • Poll specific OS metrics beyond basic AWS metrics including cloud instance memory (RAM) and additional metrics using SAM application monitors.
  • Use SAM application monitors and templates to poll applications deployed in the cloud.
  • Develop and deploy custom script monitors for PowerShell, Nagios, Linux/Unix, and Windows.
  • See AWS metrics and relationships in SAM AppStack when AWS cloud instances are managed as nodes.

SAM and integrated VMAN enhance monitoring and polled metrics when you manage cloud instances as nodes. Managed nodes consume VMAN licensed sockets. Use Orion features to manage alerts, reports, and resources.

Monitoring cloud metrics

With Cloud Infrastructure Monitoring configured, monitor real-time and historical data for your cloud environment:

  • Monitor metrics through a Cloud Summary page.
  • Every resource provides global performance and cloud metrics.
  • Drill-down into instance details pages for system information, performance metrics, and active alerts.
  • Review attached volume health and general data displays for the environment.
  • Create and maintain alerts to track issues and events in your environment.

To further enhance your monitoring for additional metrics, add the cloud instances as nodes. The applications can be monitored using:

  • WMI and SNMP: This option requires the use a VPN that connects to an AWS VPC.
  • Orion agents: This option can be used with or without a VPN.

Troubleshooting cloud metrics with Performance Analysis

Performance Analysis Dashboards, or Perfstack, provides a holistic way to view your environment's performance issues by correlating historical performance data from your Orion managed applications. Create consolidated views of charts and graphs to collect and compare cloud metrics alongside metrics, data, and logs for all managed nodes in the Orion Platform.

This means you can turn root cause analysis meetings into a collaborative effort, by bringing historical application, server, virtualization, and storage performance data into one time-boxed view. The experts on your team can quickly identify what other performance data needs to be dragged to the PerfStack dashboard, and collaborate with each other by zeroing on the root cause by changing the timeline and objects as the story of the problem comes into focus.

  • Add metrics for every monitored and managed node in the Orion Web Console
  • Review metrics gathered from multiple Orion Platform products into a consolidated view
  • Merge metrics into the same charts and graphs to see gaps and spikes
  • Walk back and forward through dates and times to track data trends
  • Determine when performance starts to ebb and flow across resources and applications

Learn more

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