The resurgence in Storage Resource Management Technology or Storage Resource Monitoring (SRM) technology is an imperative. “Agent-ed” or “agentless” architectures in LAN/WAN have served their purpose and now there is a crying need for storage resource monitoring architectures that repurpose existing architectures or build new architectures to meet the demands of the scalable infrastructure environment popularized by the cloud.
Storage monitoring is a process used in networked environments to maximize storage efficiency, availability, agility and performance. Monitoring of storage utilization across heterogeneous environments, deduplication, compression, I/O path availability and performance monitoring are some of the basic features of cloud based storage that is monitored.
Advanced online storage monitoring will include features, such as online configuration of dynamic disks and centralized management and reporting. Clustered Network Attached Storage (NAS) may be offered with linear scalability. High availability, tiering and malware protection may be attractive add on features. This type of centralized management and monitoring of storage improves productivity and storage availability. Environmental risks are mitigated while complexity is reduced.
The technology stack contains a number of independent monitoring tools that track the activities on a specific component. It also maintains interactions between monitoring components within the system creating a mesh of interactions. The efficacy of monitoring, therefore, depends not only on the efficiency with which each individual device is monitored, but depends on how these different monitoring components interact with each other. Since cloud technology stacks are very deep—they include a range of hardware elements such as servers, network cards, switches and storage controllers and software elements like applications, operating systems, file systems and volume management software. The resulting permutations and combinations for the interaction can be formidable.
At the core of the architecture is the controller or collector software. The collector connects, authenticates, executes commands received from different points in the system, and parses data received from various devices and consolidates the information to present a report to the end user. The collector can be configured to work on a specified set of rules and these rules can be updated from time to time.
As data volumes increase, cloud backup service providers are using a number of third party monitoring tools to facilitate cloud storage monitoring for both agent-ed and agentless architectures. These systems are highly focused and can be configured to specific environments. They remain operational offline or online. They generate alerts whenever events demand attention using instant messaging, email or the centralized Administration dashboard. This results in a potentially more efficient monitoring system that can be integrated with ease and used with little or no knowledge of the intricacies of the monitoring process.