VMware expands vSphere cloud with automated log management

New addition to VMWare's cloud complements vCenter Operations Manager, tapping unstructured log data for deep system-monitoring insights

Managing an IT infrastructure has become increasingly complex over the past decade. System admins don't just have to worry about ensuring that a few dedicated servers tucked away in a closet are always up and running -- or even a few virtual machines alongside physical ones. Now admins have to worry about physical and virtual servers running in their own data centers, as well as physical and virtual machines housed in a distant data centers in the cloud. With all those far-flung whirring bits and moving parts, noticing problems when they arise -- let alone pinpointing their cause -- can be downright challenging.

That's precisely why VMware has joined companies such as Splunk, Loggly, Tripwire, and Terremark in creating a log management offering primed for the cloud. The company today unveiled VMware vCenter Log Insight, an automated log-management and analytics product designed to collect unstructured log data generated by applications, physical hardware, and virtualized infrastructure. That data is then presented via a visual UI, providing real-time insight into how well systems are performing, where problems have cropped up, and what may have caused them.

According to VMware, VMware vCenter Log Insight is purpose-built for log analytics and delivers automated log management through log aggregation, analytics, and search. It gathers its unstructured log data from such components as applications, firewalls, network devices, OSes, storage systems, virtual machines, and hosts. The product supports streaming data and real-time queries.

The offering is optimized for VMware environments, according to the company, and though it can function as a stand-alone product, VMware is pushing it as a companion to VMware's vCenter Operations Manager, which analyzes structured data for system monitoring. Directly from VMware vCenter Operations, administrators can launch VMware vCenter Log Insight in context for any object or alert to identify the root cause of an IT issue, according to VMware. vCenter Log Insight also converts log data into KPIs that are fed directly to VMware vCenter Operations, providing admins with a single pane of glass to view details and alerts. The solution includes a GUI, along with a search and query box, pre-configured dashboards, and reports

VMware vCenter Log Insight is available immediately via a public beta program and will run for an extended period of time.

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