Google Stackdriver helps IT get unified view across AWS and Google Cloud

Today at the GCPNext16 event in San Francisco, Google announced the launch of Google StackDriver, a tool that gives IT a unified tool for monitoring, alerting, incidents management and logging complete with dashboards providing visual insights across each category.

Google purchased Stackdriver, the Cambridge, MA company in 2014 when it was mostly devoted to AWS cloud monitoring. It helped the team incorporate that into the Google Cloud Platform while continuing to support AWS  (making it an extremely valuable tool for companies that support both platforms).

Stackdriver is not only bringing these capabilities together into a single tool, which is in itself providing a valuable service, it’s also making it highly customizable. For example, if you know that your application has problems when there are memory spikes, rather than CPU spikes, you can fashion an alert that lets you know when your application has a memory issues. Theoretically, this should enable you to react before the problem gets out of control.

The logging capabilities let you search across your GCP and AWS clusters from a single interface. It also alerts you when your instance is near capacity, something that new senior VP Diane Greene alluded to her in keynote when she said that cloud vendors should be ensuring the success of their customers. The vendor (Google), she said should be helping customers with things like capacity planning, letting them know when they need additional resources. The burden she suggested shouldn’t be on the customer. This tool gives the kind of insight she was suggesting.

To that end, the tool also sends error reports, again completely customizable, that alert users when there are issues with applications running on the Google Cloud Platform.

All of this is designed as Greene suggested to make it easier for the customer by providing the tools they need to do their job, giving visual displays of what’s happening across your cloud instances — whether in Google or AWS — and providing a flexible and customizable environment.

In essence, Google is doing a couple of things here. It’s trying to differentiate itself from the competition, particularly AWS, even while supporting AWS in this tool. It’s also playing to its strengths as an engineering company and providing the types of tools like-minded folks need to do their jobs more easily.