Google Offers Transparent Service Level Indicators for Cloud Customers

The new metrics give organizations a way to monitor how their workloads are interacting with Google's cloud services.

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Google has made it easier for enterprise cloud administrators to monitor and understand how their application workloads are interacting with the company's cloud platform and services. 

Google on July 27 announced that it would now provide organizations with detailed and standardized metrics on the behavior of Google's Cloud Platform (GCP) services that are related to their workloads. 

Google's new Transparent Service Level Indicators (SLIs) are similar to the metrics that the company has been offering for sometime around more than 130 of its cloud application programing interfaces (APIs). Administrators can view the SLIs in their Stackdriver Monitoring dashboards and use them to ensure services are running optimally. 

Transparent SLIs give customers the ability to improve the performance of their cloud operations, noted Jay Judkowitz, senior product manager at Google in a blog announcing availability of the new feature. By helping administrators drill down into the interactions between their workloads and GCP services, the metrics can help quickly identify abnormalities and speed up the triage process, he noted. 

The new Transparent SLIs give administrators considerably more than just a high-level overview of overall service health. 

According to Google, the SLIs provide administrators with detailed visibility into specific interactions between Google's cloud services and their own application workloads. 

Administrators can look at service metrics using a variety of attributes such as the location of a particular service, the application that might be calling the service, the way the service is being accessed and response codes. Organizations can use the data to explore relationships between various metrics and to determine the causes and effects of attributes related to service quality. 

Judkowitz identified several situations where Transparent SLIs can help facilitate a better support experience for enterprises. For instance, the SLIs can allow an administrator to quickly verify if an application's degraded performance is being caused by an increase in the latency of a critical GCP service. 

If that indeed turns out to be the case, the information can help Google zero-in on the problem and start fixing it quickly. The SLIs also can help administrators determine if a problem is being caused by a network issue unrelated to Google's services, or by something within their own application environment. 

Google has been providing similar metrics for cloud API usage for many months. Like the Transparent SLIs, the API metrics are designed to give administrators the information they need to troubleshoot API related issues. 

The metrics, according to Google, are specific to each organization's use of APIs and provide visibility into error rates, overall traffic and latency. They give administrators information on the number of requests made by a workload to all enabled APIs, the percentage of requests that resulted in errors and the time taken for an API to respond to a request. 

Jaikumar Vijayan

Jaikumar Vijayan

Vijayan is an award-winning independent journalist and tech content creation specialist covering data security and privacy, business intelligence, big data and data analytics.