SoftWatch CloudIT Premium AWS supports migrating machines, users and applications to Amazon Web Services (AWS) using SoftWatch advance Application Usage Analytics

SoftWatch CloudIT Premium AWS SaaS Solution combines application resource profiling and end-user usage analytics to understand the current situation, support the selection of the right enterprise applications suitable to AWS, perform capacity planning, enhance cost analysis and licensing model, support process of migration to AWS and validate the outcome.

 

Introduction

Organizations, including large enterprises, are increasingly moving their IT infrastructure and applications to the cloud. Virtually all CIOs are planning to invest substantial resources in joining this trend and they have tremendous incentives to do so. It seems that the acknowledgment of the considerable business and operational advantages that public cloud computing offers (cost reduction, agility, accessibility, collaboration, resilience and more) results in expediting cloud adoption and present a huge opportunity for cloud computing providers and system integrators when riding this paradigm shift.

While the strategic trend is clear, the path to get there is not that simple. Enterprises are highly dependent on their enterprise systems and must carefully plan and execute the transition in a way that will minimize risks such as business discontinuity, productivity degradation, performance degradation and more. The migration of applications, desktop environments, and data to the cloud is a complicated task that must be supported with relevant information and analytics that can assist in making informed decisions, planning, testing, monitoring the migration progress and validating the outcomes.

Yet, it is worth noting that not every application is right for the cloud. Therefore, when planning the migration, one important question that should be carefully addressed is the suitability of applications to move to the cloud. This question involves many facets: Type of cloud environment ( SaaS , PaaS, IaaS), overall application architecture, business importance (mission critical?), sensitivity of data, cost, usability, regulatory constraints and more. And while some aspects of these important questions (such as regulations and data sensitivity) can be addressed applying judgment or complying to certain rules, many other questions can be addressed by analyzing data and building analytical models such as application profiling.

Application profiling is based on measuring and collecting real usage data of an application. The data collected can serve as an important input to determine the suitability of the application and the risks in migrating it to the cloud, understand the resource dependencies, conduct capacity planning and build cost analysis.

Amazon Web Services is today’s leading cloud environment which allows enterprises to host their servers and applications using Amazon EC2 services and transition to virtual desktop environments using Amazon WorkSpaces service allowing them to provision virtual cloud-based Microsoft windows desktop for their users

SoftWatch CloudIT Premium AWS Service was designed to support the migration to Amazon EC2 and WorkSpaces by providing unique in-depth analytics to support decision making, planning, and migration. Its unique ability to provide application resource profiling along with end user real usage analytics of any enterprise application, can help enterprises select the right applications, plan capacity, secure end user experience, support the migration process, validate performance and control costs.

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CloudIT Premium Service  

CloudIT Premium Service is specifically designed to support enterprise applications migration to the cloud environment( SaaS , PaaS, IaaS) through providing application usage analytics that support decision makers and project managers in assessing suitability and readiness of enterprise applications to move to the cloud, plan the migration, monitor the progress and measure the outcome of the transition.

The main capabilities that are provided by the CloudIT Premium Service are:

  • Application resource profiling including:
    • CPU usage
    • Memory usage
    • Storage data such as throughput and I/O operations
    • Network throughput
  • End user activity profiling, including:
    • Total number of connected users
    • Segmentation of users to viewers, light users, and heavy users
    • Users activity by departments
    • User activity by locations
    • User activity by functional entities
  • Application rating – the suitability of an application to move to the cloud-based on application and user profiling using enterprise’s defined thresholds and cost considerations
  • License optimization
  • Pilot sampling – select a sample of end users that simulates the users’ activity of the whole enterprise
  • Planning and monitoring of training activities
  • Ongoing monitoring and measurement of the target cloud environment, including:
    • Applications resource utilization
    • End user activity
    • End-user experience

With the above capabilities, enterprises are far better equipped to make inform decisions, plan and execute their migration strategy to the cloud.

How it works

CloudIT Premium is a robust and scalable SaaS solution, suitable for supporting any size company that enables customers to have a quick assessment performed on their network without the need to install servers and perform any internal infrastructure changes. It’s secure, lightweight and has an extremely low footprint on the customer’s network.

By using a small easily deployable software agent, CloudIT Premium will collect statistical usage information from each user in the company and then securely transmit that information for encrypted storage.

Using a statistical approach enables a reduction of the number of calculations performed by the agent, shifting the load onto SoftWatch’s servers, thus ensuring that no additional load will strain the customer’s environment.

Seamless data collection

CloudIT Premium software agent collects relevant data from every laptop, desktop and terminal server. Once installed, the software agent begins collecting data on all installed and running applications; it also monitors web browsing information, application resource consumption, focus, and actual usage.

Secure communication

The data is then sent securely to SoftWatch’s cloud servers where it is analyzed using statistical models. Detailed reports are generated showing an aggregate view of all software usage and software inventory for real-time tracking, proactive monitoring, and license portfolio management

SaaS environment

The agent installation package is pre-configured to match customers’ environments and avoids the typical confusion when implementing network-based reporting applications. The windows agent installation file is identical for all Microsoft® Windows®-based 32-bit and 64-bit operating systems and the Mac agent supports the Leopard operating system and above

One-way transmission from software agent to a server

The server never initiates contact with the software agent. Communication is always pushed from software agent to the service securely over an encrypted connection. The server never needs to “penetrate” the organization’s network. This extremely network-friendly configuration makes deployment very simple and intuitive and enhances security. The agent only requires access to the cloud servers on port 443 (https).

Easy deployment

The CloudIT Premium software agent is simply deployed on all the company’s computers to get an immediate network-wide view of all software applications (e.g. by software distribution mechanism). After the Agent is deployed, it runs in the background without disrupting users’ workspace. The management console intuitively maps the company’s software inventory, monitors software usage, sets alerts to flag potential problems, views actual license usage and generates historical usage reports. As a SaaS solution,

CloudIT Premium requires no ongoing maintenance. The Agent consumes very few system resources, with virtually no effect on host machines.

Secure Data Collection

The Agent immediately starts collecting all relevant applications usage data and sends the information to SoftWatch’s cloud servers for secure storage. There is no keylogging whatsoever. SoftWatch uses a proprietary statistical model to determine interactivity and all analysis is done on the server side.

Analysis

Once information is received on the server side, it goes through multiple batch jobs. To be validated, sanity checked, authenticated and then integrated into the database for secure encrypted storage. The data remains available for retroactive analysis. The analysis outputs the users’ applications runtime, focus time on applications, interactive time with applications and resource consumption. Reports are displayed via the web UI. Access to reports is encrypted and users can generate reports based on any date range they wish, provided agents reported information during that selected time period.