Cloud Management

Lucidchart Launches Tool to Visualize AWS Cloud Environments

Lucidchart today added a visualization tool that generates interactive diagrams of an IT organization’s Amazon Web Services (AWS) environment.

Dan Lawyer, senior vice president of product at Lucidchart, said Lucidchart Cloud Insights makes it possible to automatically visualize all the services an organization is consuming from the cloud service provider, with support for other cloud platforms planned.

One of the biggest challenges organizations regularly encounter today is the only way they have of understanding what services are being consumed is to analyze the monthly bill made available by a cloud service provider, he said.

Lucidchart Cloud Insights is designed to make it easy to determine what services are being consumed in real-time, Lawyer said, noting IT teams can also visualize cloud governance data along and apply filters and save views.

Armed with that information, IT organizations can then better control spending across cloud services that, in terms of costs, are often widely divergent. Developers, for example, don’t always pay close attention to which tiers of service provide the optimal level of cost of a certain class of workloads. A high-fidelity approach to visualizing how services are consumed provides an effective means to have that conversation, noted Lawyer.

Once an issue arises it can be resolved faster because everyone involved is capable of visually inspecting the same set of interactions occurring at the same time, he added.

Lucidchart already provides visual workspaces in the cloud that combine diagramming, data visualization and collaboration tools to make it easier for teams to collaborate. Lucidchart Cloud Insight now extends that capability into IT operations, Lawyer said, noting IT teams traditionally have relied on tools such as Microsoft Powerpoint to try and visualize consumption patterns.

The launch of Lucidchart Cloud Insight comes at a time when more workloads are moving on to public clouds in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Given the uncertainties surrounding when IT staff might be able to access an on-premises IT environment, many organizations are accelerating the rate at which application workloads are being deployed in the cloud.

The challenge IT organizations face is that moving applications into the cloud doesn’t always yield consistent cost savings. IT teams constantly need to monitor how IT infrastructure resources are being consumed to keep IT budgets under control. The issue is that developers frequently spin up cloud services without telling anyone in IT about it until a bill shows up. Worse yet, many developers often forget to de-provision virtual machines and other cloud resources they’re no longer using.

Of course, as more cloud platforms are invoked, the management issue only becomes that much more complex. Going forward IT teams will want to visually compare and contrast how services are being consumed across multiple clouds. Whatever the motivation, it’s a lot easier to overlook the implications of a cloud service that is presented as part of a static bill than it is one that visually presents itself as part of an interactive diagram that is always up to date.

Mike Vizard

Mike Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist with over 25 years of experience. He also contributed to IT Business Edge, Channel Insider, Baseline and a variety of other IT titles. Previously, Vizard was the editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise as well as Editor-in-Chief for CRN and InfoWorld.

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