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Cloud performance monitoring 101: key metrics IT admins should track

With more than 94% of organizations today using some form of cloud-based service, it’s fair to say that cloud monitoring has never been more important. And it’s not just a nice-to-have. Sysadmins and IT managers are increasingly expected to use cloud monitoring tools to track and evaluate the performance of cloud-based infrastructure, reporting on everything from CPU usage to cyber threats and resource allocation.

In this article, we’re going to break down cloud monitoring services, and look at some key metrics you should be tracking.

What is cloud performance monitoring?  

Cloud monitoring is exactly what it sounds like. Admins use cloud monitoring tools to oversee and manage cloud-based infrastructure, services, and apps. The idea is to make sure performance, budget, efficiency, and security are all being optimized. Is there a better cloud provider we could be using? Are we vulnerable to cyber threats? Is our network performance up to speed – literally? IT managers look at all these factors, and more.

Key metrics in cloud monitoring

There are several key metrics when it comes to cloud monitoring. These are the things all sysadmins should be aware of:

Response time and latency  – A good place to start. This simply measures the time it takes for a service to respond to a request. High response times can indicate performance issues, which might require some tweaking.

Cost-benefit analysis  – Are your cloud systems giving you the best bang for your buck? IT managers should be tracking resource spend and looking for ways to optimize their budgets. Is there a cheaper, equally effective alternative on the market?

Uptime and availability  – If your cloud-based services are often down, they’re not doing their job. Time to look at network infrastructure, hardware failures, and possible software bugs.

Resource utilization  – Cloud monitoring helps you track things like CPU usage, memory, storage and network bandwidth. Spotting areas of stress, or opportunity, is crucial for optimizing your overall performance.

Cyber metrics  – These will differ from business to business, but all cloud monitoring services should include metrics like the number of cyber incidents, intrusion attempts, vulnerabilities and security compliance standards.

API performance metrics  – Cloud monitoring will often involve tracking the performance of APIs, especially things like response time, error rates and overall usage. This is essential for apps relying on third-party services.

Cloud monitoring and print services 

Cloud monitoring can be used in conjunction with cloud print services to optimize and manage your cloud-based printing activity. Think of it like a check-up for your printing ecosystem. With PaperCut NG and MF , for example, you can use monitoring tools like PRTG, Zabbix and Nagios to check the health and efficiency of your printing workflow.

The PaperCut System Health Interface also gives you detailed system health information in JSON format, if you want to dabble in some more advanced monitoring.

And with our cloud-native solutions PaperCut Hive and PaperCut Pocket, print monitoring is managed in the cloud without the need for add-ons!

How to track cloud print services

There are tons of ways to monitor your cloud print services using cloud monitoring tools. Here are just a few features you might use as an IT sysadmin:

Trigger alarms for urgent print outages  – Get alarms for the overall system status, as well as individual components (like printers or devices).

Monitor real-time activity  – See who’s printing right now, as well as the number of print jobs, errors and warnings. Think of this as your printing heartbeat.

Plan future resources – Address bottlenecks before they occur by tracking things like license usage or hardware resources.

Monitor inactivity – With cloud monitoring tools, you can quickly spot changes in print usage. This might identify a problem with a specific printer.

Cloud monitoring services are an important part of any cloud-based printing system. You can’t fix what you can’t see. For more advice about cloud monitoring, and how to get started in your business, just chat to our friendly PaperCut support team . They can walk you through the entire process.  

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