One of the great unknowns about cloud computing providers is what level of performance IT organizations will actually see.
We already have free services that measure the network availability of these providers, but Compuware has begun beta testing a new service that will make public the performance metrics of cloud computing services.
CloudSleuth, which will be formally rolled out later this year, uses application performance technology that Compuware picked up when it acquired Gomez last year. According to Compuware director of cloud computing Doug Willoughby, Compuware has contracted with the major cloud providers to run application workloads as a test to gather performance information using Gomez software. CloudSleuth is gathering data from more than 140,000 points of presence on the Web.
Announced at the Cloud Computing Expo in New York this week, Compuware wants to show IT organizations how to use tools such as Gomez to first enforce service level agreements with cloud computing providers and then eventually use Gomez tools to monitor the performance of their own private clouds.
As the battle over the merits of public versus private cloud computing models continues to heat up, eventually real performance metrics must replace philosophical debates. In addition, Willoughby notes that the prevalence of "borderless applications," which consist of components running on multiple Web sites, means one provider having a problem can hurt the performance of these applications on them all. And the odds go up with more components running on different platforms. That means IT organizations will need access to real operational data to pinpoint the source of the problem.
In the future, Compuware hopes the information it gathers will fuel development of a series of cloud computing benchmarks. But in the meantime, look for Compuware to start highlighting the performance limitations of various public cloud computing services to showcase the value of its tools.