The Race to Find Capacity Planning Tools for the Cloud

    November 10, 2015

    By John Miecielica

    You need capacity planning tools for your cloud-based applications just as much as you do for in-house systems. Plan ahead and you won’t get stuck solving a problem you could have avoided in the first place.

    The cloud may be one of the most useful IT innovations for business in recent years. Its infinite scalability has made much of the organizational and storage problems associated with both mainframe and paper systems disappear.

    However, just because space on the cloud is infinite doesn’t mean it’s free: efficient, cost-effective use of the resource requires careful planning, particularly around capacity management. In other words, capacity planning for the cloud needs to be just as good as it is for any of your in-house systems and services. And for those companies that utilize a combination of the two types of environments, making sense of all that data will take a set of tools that are as comprehensive and time-efficient as they are precise.

    With traditional capacity management, the goal is typically to ensure you have enough CPU memory disks for a given task, whether that task is to add an additional eCommerce platform, or simply to keep your day-to-day operations running smoothly. For the cloud, good capacity management is about knowing when to add additional servers based on both projected workloads and your budget for storage space.

    Get Your Head in the Cloud

    According to Fluke Networks, many businesses ignore the question of capacity planning for the cloud until it’s too late. For small projects  an extra app here or there  using the cloud without capacity planning (probably) won’t get you into too much trouble. However, capacity planning becomes critically important when you have projects or applications in the works that require a lot of storage space and resources.

    Just as with capacity planning for your in-house services, lack of foresight can end up costing you a lot of money. As with any system, cloud-based or on-premise, reacting to problems as they arise will likely cost you valuable time and resources.

    However, cloud computing services become significantly more expensive if they’re purchased at the last minute. While they can save you money in countless ways, you won’t see a penny of those savings if the whole IT budget is being spent putting out expensive fires.

    A Good Tool Is Hard to Find

    Many companies leap into the cloud without the proper tools because they simply aren’t satisfied with the options they’ve encountered. Also Fluke Networks adds, “Solid, reliable tools for capacity planning and management have been slow to develop.” And that’s the truth: while there are many options on the market for capacity planning for in-house applications, there are far fewer for cloud-based capacity management.

    One reason why is that cloud service providers aren’t motivated to help businesses save money on their services. If businesses using the cloud are reacting to problems, instead of proactively avoiding them through good planning, then they’re more likely to spend the extra money on last-minute solutions. Even if cloud providers do offer capacity planning tools, they might not be your best bet. According to industry experts, third-party service providers are often the safest option.

    The Right Tool for You

    While good tools may be rare, they do exist. TeamQuest recently announced that its capacity planning tools are now compatible with Microsoft Azure, and they’ve long offered compatibility with Amazon EC2  which just so happen to be two of the most popular infrastructure-as-a-service providers.

    The software allows cloud users to monitor the performance of services running on Azure or EC2, and when combined with TeamQuest’s existing tools for on-premise services, IT professionals will finally have a comprehensive view of their entire system.

    Using the cloud to house virtual applications can save your company time and money, but only if you use the right tools and use them wisely. TeamQuest’s software can help you make informed decisions and avoid costly capacity issues.

    Category: capacity-planning