TrustRadius
CloudWatch - Flexible Log Management At A Great Price PointWe use Amazon CloudWatch to aggregate and retain logs across all of the different services that make up our infrastructure. It is primarily used across our engineering and dev ops departments. Using CloudWatch logs allows us to address compliance issues associated with log retention because it is very easy to configure an expiration (if any) for log files. We also use CloudWatch metrics to monitor important KPIs and performance metrics for our business.,Managing log retention periods is very simple with CloudWatch, and can be configured on a per-group basis. Monitoring host performance is very easy when coupled with the CloudWatch Agent on an EC2 instance. A simple installation and configuration replaces an entire 3rd-party host monitoring stack. CloudWatch is flexible enough for not just host monitoring, but application monitoring as well. It's easy to pipe local logs up to CloudWatch and extract structured data in order to monitor and set alerts on custom app metrics.,Unfortunately, the CloudWatch dashboard does not provide the ability to create histograms of discrete counts. This makes it difficult to, for instance, use CloudWatch to quickly identify specific IP addresses that have a high request volume in a certain period. The UX for creating a custom metric from a CloudWatch log group is somewhat confusing. Every time I need to create a new metric I find myself fumbling around the interface for a few minutes while I try to remember how to do it. The alerting options for CloudWatch are not as extensive as are available with some 3rd-party services.,7,We were able to set up log streaming, retention, and simple downtime alerts within a few hours, having no prior experience with CloudWatch, freeing up our engineers to focus on more important business goals. CloudWatch log groups have made it relatively easy to detect and diagnose issues in production by allowing us to aggregate logs across servers, correlate failures, isolate misbehaving servers, etc. Thanks to CloudWatch, we are generally able to identify, understand and mitigate most production fires within 10-15 minutes. Choosing CloudWatch to manage log aggregation has saved us quite a bit of time and money over the past year. Generally, 3rd-party log aggregation solutions tend to get quite expensive unless you self-host, in which case you typically need to spend a fair amount of time setting up, maintaining, and monitoring these services.,Loggly, Graylog, PaperTrail and New Relic APM,Docker, New Relic APM, Threat StackDon't Skip Proactive Server(less)-side MonitoringWe use Amazon Cloudwatch in a variety of ways, from monitoring the performance and validation success/failures of our ETL (extract, transform, and load) processes, our Lambda Services, our EC2 instances, our RDS instances, as well as our Redshift instance. Certainly we're using Amazon Cloudwatch to monitor day-to-day server-side activities, but the really impressive capabilities lie in its ability to both diagnose issue, as well as to trigger automated remediation.,Lambda process monitoring, particularly useful when you're relying on third-party services. Active monitoring RDS (set thresholds so we know before a database runs out of space) Auto-requisitioning of additional resources,10,It saves time pouring through log files, providing us non-engineers with a nice clean, intuitive interface It helps us maximize "up-time" by allowing us to stay ahead of third-party service downtime,AWS Lambda, Amazon Redshift, Amazon Relational Database ServiceSimple Log Aggregation and Metrics Out-of-the-BoxOur engineering team uses CloudWatch to collect logs and monitor our back-end infrastructure and services. We use AWS ECS, Lambda, API Gateway, SageMaker and Step Functions; CloudWatch collects logs for these products out-of-the-box. It is easy to configure log retention policies; e.g., after three months, we can move logs to S3 infrequent-access or Glacier to save money. CloudWatch's log search in the console lacks many of the search features you would find in PaperTrail or Log.ly, but I find it is serviceable. Searching JSON-lines logs in the console might be an unpleasant experience. Similarly, CloudWatch metrics are provided out-of-the-box for all of the AWS products we use; it is easy to create alarms for these metrics and integrate them with PagerDuty.,Integration with other AWS products is CloudWatch's greatest feature. CloudWatch logs and metrics are provided out-of-the-box for ECS, Lambda, Sagemaker, and most other AWS products. Log aggregation and instrumentation are difficult to configure and manage; it is great to defer that work to AWS. Configuring log retention policies is simple with AWS. If your business is required to retain logs for years, being able to automatically move old logs to S3 IA or Glacier with a few clicks is convenient. Configuring alerts from metrics is simple, and it is easy to integrate alerts with PagerDuty or email.,The console's log search lacks many of the features you would find in PaperTrail or Log.ly. Regex search is either not supported, or very difficult to find. It can be difficult to understand how the CloudWatch bill breaks down by log group. The date/time picker in the console could be easier to use.,8,CloudWatch is integrated with other AWS products out-of-the-box; our engineers do not need to configure and maintain log aggregation services and can focus on our product. Allowing engineers to focus on building competitive advantages instead of infrastructure is a huge boon. It is easy for our engineers to build alerts with CloudWatch; we know when services break and can respond before our customers discover the problem. CloudWatch can be inexpensive, particularly if your business is required to retain logs for years.,New Relic, Datadog, PaperTrail, Loggly and Nagios,New Relic, PaperTrail, Zoom, PyCharm, IntelliJ IDEA, Visual Studio IDENecessary if you are in the AWS cloudWe manage hundreds of virtualized machines in the AWS cloud, so we need a place to look up logs from all of these machines. We use cloudwatch in debugging production issues and tracking trending data. Devs use it in our dev environment to debug new code.,The ability to create dashboards off of metrics Setting alarms when things go wrong so we get alerts Its integrations with other AWS products.,If you have to ever dig manually through logs to try to find something it can be a little overwhelming. The user interface could use some work I would like the ability to create more customizable dashboards. The way log streams are used feels very counterintuitive.,7,Looking at logs is necessary for software development. Cloudwatch provides what our users need to get the job done It won't directly affect the bottom line but less time spent on support issues means less wasted money.,Splunk Cloud and Sumo Logic,JIRA Software, Splunk Enterprise, OktaA great tool to get insights into your AWS infrastructure.Cloudwatch is a great way to get information about all your hardware in Amazon Web Service. It allows you to know the state and health of all of your infrastructure and you can alert, graph, and monitor the health and state of every piece. It solved the issue of not knowing the state of your system.,Monitor Alert Visibility,Amazon-only cumbersome compared to other solutions not 100% customizable.,5,Cheap Part of AWS/Cloudformation/Terraform already.,,Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), Amazon Elastic MapReduce, Amazon Aurora, Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Service)
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Amazon CloudWatch
46 Ratings
Score 8.0 out of 101
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Amazon CloudWatch Reviews

Amazon CloudWatch
46 Ratings
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Score 8.0 out of 101
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Brian Dentino profile photo
September 17, 2018

Amazon CloudWatch Review: "CloudWatch - Flexible Log Management At A Great Price Point"

Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
We use Amazon CloudWatch to aggregate and retain logs across all of the different services that make up our infrastructure. It is primarily used across our engineering and dev ops departments. Using CloudWatch logs allows us to address compliance issues associated with log retention because it is very easy to configure an expiration (if any) for log files. We also use CloudWatch metrics to monitor important KPIs and performance metrics for our business.
  • Managing log retention periods is very simple with CloudWatch, and can be configured on a per-group basis.
  • Monitoring host performance is very easy when coupled with the CloudWatch Agent on an EC2 instance. A simple installation and configuration replaces an entire 3rd-party host monitoring stack.
  • CloudWatch is flexible enough for not just host monitoring, but application monitoring as well. It's easy to pipe local logs up to CloudWatch and extract structured data in order to monitor and set alerts on custom app metrics.
  • Unfortunately, the CloudWatch dashboard does not provide the ability to create histograms of discrete counts. This makes it difficult to, for instance, use CloudWatch to quickly identify specific IP addresses that have a high request volume in a certain period.
  • The UX for creating a custom metric from a CloudWatch log group is somewhat confusing. Every time I need to create a new metric I find myself fumbling around the interface for a few minutes while I try to remember how to do it.
  • The alerting options for CloudWatch are not as extensive as are available with some 3rd-party services.
It is well suited for organizations already using a number of Amazon services, as most of these will integrate very nicely with CloudWatch. If you have detailed log retention requirements, it's quite nice as well since they make it easy to configure retention and export data to S3. The tooling for metric filters and dashboards are very customizable and sufficient for general monitoring but the UX is not the most friendly. If your organization spends a lot of time on business intelligence and performance tracking, you may want to consider a more targeted 3rd-party service.
Read Brian Dentino's full review
Kyle Reichelt profile photo
November 20, 2018

Amazon CloudWatch Review: "Don't Skip Proactive Server(less)-side Monitoring"

Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
We use Amazon Cloudwatch in a variety of ways, from monitoring the performance and validation success/failures of our ETL (extract, transform, and load) processes, our Lambda Services, our EC2 instances, our RDS instances, as well as our Redshift instance. Certainly we're using Amazon Cloudwatch to monitor day-to-day server-side activities, but the really impressive capabilities lie in its ability to both diagnose issue, as well as to trigger automated remediation.
  • Lambda process monitoring, particularly useful when you're relying on third-party services.
  • Active monitoring RDS (set thresholds so we know before a database runs out of space)
  • Auto-requisitioning of additional resources
Well suited if:
  • Your organization is married to the AWS ecosystem
  • You tech stack is reliant on third-party services
  • You use Splunk as your log aggregator (integrates well)
  • You prefer to be proactive about health of your tech stack
Not particularly suited if:
  • You don't use AWS
  • You like to fly by the seat of your pants
Read Kyle Reichelt's full review
No photo available
November 30, 2018

Amazon CloudWatch Review: "Simple Log Aggregation and Metrics Out-of-the-Box"

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
Our engineering team uses CloudWatch to collect logs and monitor our back-end infrastructure and services. We use AWS ECS, Lambda, API Gateway, SageMaker and Step Functions; CloudWatch collects logs for these products out-of-the-box. It is easy to configure log retention policies; e.g., after three months, we can move logs to S3 infrequent-access or Glacier to save money. CloudWatch's log search in the console lacks many of the search features you would find in PaperTrail or Log.ly, but I find it is serviceable. Searching JSON-lines logs in the console might be an unpleasant experience. Similarly, CloudWatch metrics are provided out-of-the-box for all of the AWS products we use; it is easy to create alarms for these metrics and integrate them with PagerDuty.
  • Integration with other AWS products is CloudWatch's greatest feature. CloudWatch logs and metrics are provided out-of-the-box for ECS, Lambda, Sagemaker, and most other AWS products. Log aggregation and instrumentation are difficult to configure and manage; it is great to defer that work to AWS.
  • Configuring log retention policies is simple with AWS. If your business is required to retain logs for years, being able to automatically move old logs to S3 IA or Glacier with a few clicks is convenient.
  • Configuring alerts from metrics is simple, and it is easy to integrate alerts with PagerDuty or email.
  • The console's log search lacks many of the features you would find in PaperTrail or Log.ly. Regex search is either not supported, or very difficult to find.
  • It can be difficult to understand how the CloudWatch bill breaks down by log group.
  • The date/time picker in the console could be easier to use.
If you are using other AWS products, including EC2, ECS, or Lambda, using CloudWatch is an easy decision. You will get log aggregation and instrumentation out-of-the-box. The lack of log search features may be a sticking point, though your organization does not have to use CloudWatch exclusively. If your platform does not rely on AWS products, CloudWatch should not be considered.
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September 29, 2017

Amazon CloudWatch Review: "Necessary if you are in the AWS cloud"

Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
We manage hundreds of virtualized machines in the AWS cloud, so we need a place to look up logs from all of these machines. We use cloudwatch in debugging production issues and tracking trending data. Devs use it in our dev environment to debug new code.
  • The ability to create dashboards off of metrics
  • Setting alarms when things go wrong so we get alerts
  • Its integrations with other AWS products.
  • If you have to ever dig manually through logs to try to find something it can be a little overwhelming. The user interface could use some work
  • I would like the ability to create more customizable dashboards.
  • The way log streams are used feels very counterintuitive.
If you're just starting out with smaller applications in the AWS cloud, then AWS cloudwatch is the right tool. When your company starts growing, along with your software becoming more mature, you may end up piping your logs to another system in order to do more analytics on it and gather better insights.
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August 17, 2017

Amazon CloudWatch Review: "A great tool to get insights into your AWS infrastructure."

Score 5 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
Cloudwatch is a great way to get information about all your hardware in Amazon Web Service. It allows you to know the state and health of all of your infrastructure and you can alert, graph, and monitor the health and state of every piece. It solved the issue of not knowing the state of your system.
  • Monitor
  • Alert
  • Visibility
  • Amazon-only
  • cumbersome compared to other solutions
  • not 100% customizable.
Amazon CloudWatch is well suited for anyone that's using AWS and wants to see into their data, their traffic, or their system health. It's the eyes and ears of AWS. It really is best for any scenario where you are hosting infrastructure with AWS and want to keep an eye on it.
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March 08, 2017

Review: "Amazon CloudWatch is an essential tool for governing your system-wide resources and app management"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

At my organization, we use AWS (Amazon Web Services) to spin up new server instances for any business critical applications we require. This is known as containerization. Instead of purchasing new computers we buy more RAM and then have the capacity to spin up or shut down an almost limitless array of servers on an as-needed basis.

Not long ago companies needed to physically install servers on-site. Hardware would need to be upgraded, administrated and repaired. Also if these servers contained sensitive data, they would need to be secured from hacking or fire and theft.

Today we let Amazon host all of our data in the cloud. They are at least partially responsible for guarding our data from theft and fire. Our organization instantly recognized the benefit of being able to administrate our AWS server instances via Amazon CloudWatch. If you rely on AWS in any way, you need to use Amazon CloudWatch.

  • Application Performance Management.
  • Error Management.
  • Utilization Management.
  • The interface is clunky.
  • The context sensitive help could be written more clearly.
  • I wish there were more options for arranging the dashboard interface to my specific needs.
It's well suited where you rely on cloud services to run mission critical applications. I think it'd be less suitable in a scenario where the information you store on your servers is what your customers expect you to manage directly.
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March 21, 2017

Amazon CloudWatch Review: "CloudWatch is a great almost-free monitoring solution if you are on AWS"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
We use CloudWatch to monitor all of our production infrastructure. We need visibility into how our servers, databases and AWS resources are behaving and CloudWatch provides realtime dashboards to get information. We also use alerts on cloudwatch so that the system is proactively monitoring for our recommended levels of CPU usage, or storage usage, and alerts us when alarms break. This allows us to run our operations without having all eyes on glass 24x7. Recently we have been using CloudWatch Logs to send application logs to CloudWatch for later processing and debugging.
  • Infrastructure monitoring
  • Infrastructure alerting
  • Dashboarding
  • Building cloudwatch dashboards can be cumbersome. You have to navigate through various screens to get the metrics you want to add.
  • Exporting alarm / alerting data is not available for further post-processing or analysis
  • You have to build alerts and alarms yourself. CloudWatch does not give you any recommendations, so you have to know what you're doing.
CloudWatch is a great low-cost solution for infrastructure monitoring and alerting if you are an AWS customer. You basically get it for free and requires little setup. If you are not on AWS, you can't enjoy the benefits of CloudWatch, so if you are running multi-cloud, need to think about how you will monitor all of your resources and assets.
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March 20, 2017

Amazon CloudWatch Review: "Easy to set up"

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
We used it in our web app for improved response time for video streaming. Our web servers are already in EC2.
  • Easy to set up
  • Pay per use
  • Better performance
  • IPv6 support
  • No free support
It is more beneficial if web servers are in EC2
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