At a young age, EM7 became the monitoring and management system of the Interop show and has served in that role for four years running. Because it can combine in one view the virtual machines running inside the enterprise data center under VMware and those outside the data center running in Amazon Web Services EC2, it is one of the few tools that's a candidate for managing the hybrid cloud.
Although EM7 release 7.3 is available as software as a service hosted in Equinix, it's more typically implemented on premises with the Power-Packs that are appropriate for a given customer's virtual machine use. Power-Packs provide monitoring metrics and analytics for different environments, such as VMware's vCenter and vCloud Director, whether running in a public or private cloud, and AWS services as well. It has no problem accessing information on VMs running in GoGrid or Rackspace as well, said CTO Antonio Piraino in an interview.
Another distinguishing feature is that EM7 constantly watches for new virtual machines or decommissioned instances through its discovery and mapping feature. That makes it a candidate to track active vMotion environments, where virtual machines are being moved around. "If an instance is moved, we can automatically track that. It's continuous mapping, rather than just a snapshot in time," Piraino said.
[ Want more on how ScienceLogic manages virtualized environments? See ScienceLogic Brings Triage Approach To Virtualization Management. ]
AWS customers, of course, may subscribe to Amazon CloudWatch to monitor their instances in the public cloud. But Piraino said ScienceLogic offers advantages over CloudWatch in the amount of detail it can provide for each instance. As cloud users become more sophisticated, for example, they're often generating duplicate instances in a second availability zone or even in a different geographic region to guard against system failure.
With work divided between instances, CloudWatch will provide the customer with an aggregated view of what resources the instances are using but might leave out crucial details. ScienceLogic's monitoring will provide a view of resources being used by each instance. If database services on which the application depends are lagging for one instance but not the other, that fact will show up in the EM7 management console. That's because analytics applied to the data collection can spot a change in conditions that might be affecting the health of a running instance and increasing the risk that something will go wrong with it.
Piraino acknowledged you would see the problem on CloudWatch as well, but not until one instance or the other had failed, due to the bad performance of the database system.
With EM7 information, operations managers are not just presented with a stream of alerts but a recommendation that "you might be better off if you run Instance A over here," said Piraino.
The 7.3 release provides advanced monitoring of VMware's vCloud Director as well as AWS and public cloud environments. It can see VMware VMs, whether on premises or in a vCloud Director public cloud, leading to Piraino's claim that ScienceLogic provides "the only product on the market to support fully multi-tenant operations for VMware cloud assets."
The continuous component mapping means EM7 can be applied to converged infrastructures such as Cisco's Unified Computing Environment or the EMC/VMware/Cisco vBlock environment supplied by VCE, a subsidiary of the three. In such environments, vMotion may be used extensively to achieve more efficient operations.
EM7 release 7.3 also retains operational data for as long as the customer wishes. With CloudWatch, the operational data is held for 15 days, then discarded, giving customers an abbreviated historical view of their systems.
EM7 and its Power-Packs pull information out of traditional systems management systems, such as BMC, HP, IBM and CA, as well as directly from storage systems. EM7 is an agentless system, gathering data from device management interfaces, network monitoring points and virtualization system managers such as VMware's vCenter.
All Power-Packs are made available as part of the EM7 platform without separate charges. The core system is priced at $15 per month per monitored virtual machine or device.
ScienceLogic, founded in 2003 and funded by venture capital, doesn't give out revenue figures. But company spokesmen said it ramped up revenues 49% in the third quarter and 69% in the fourth quarter of 2012. New or expanded subscription customers in the fourth quarter included SAP, the National Academies of Sciences, Peak Colo, Cloudops, Carbonite, Virtacore and C-Span.