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Top 10 cloud tools

New tools help IT execs cut cloud costs, optimize resources, integrate and manage cloud instances

By Christine Burns, Network World
April 08, 2013 06:08 AM ET
TopTen Cloud Tools
CREDIT: STEPHEN SAUER

Network World - Cloud vendors are delivering boatloads of new tools to help enterprise IT build, buy, manage, monitor, tweak and track cloud services. These tools are designed to help IT execs free up their budgets and their staff so both can be used towards more strategic, line of business projects. (Watch a slideshow version of this story.)

[BUT ARE THEY READY: Cloud tools abound. Is enterprise IT ready]

We surveyed cloud practitioners and came up with this list of the most useful cloud tools. Here are their top 10 picks.

Company: Cloudability

Product: Cloudability

Category: Cloud Cost Analytics

Cloudability is a financial management tool for monitoring and analyzing all cloud expenses across an organization. It aggregates expenditures into reports, helps identify opportunities for reducing costs, offers budget alerts and recommendations via SMS and email, and provides APIs for connecting cloud billing and usage data to any business or financial system. The company in February announced that it currently monitors over $250 million in cloud costs, which is double what it monitored less than six months ago.

Company: Cloudyn

Product: S3 Life-Cycle Tracker, EC2 Reservation Detector, RDS Reservation Detector

Category: Cloud Optimization

These tools are designed to help corporate IT from over-buying Amazon cloud resources. Cloudyn's suite of services gives users a dashboard showing detailed information on all of their virtual machine instances, databases and storage. Cloudyn then provides insights into inefficiencies and suggestions on how to get rid of them. Currently focused on Amazon's cloud, the company has stated in the past that it will work on tools that track usage in Rackspace, Microsoft Azure and GoGrid in the future.

Company: Dell Boomi

Product: AtomSphere

Category: Cloud Integration

AtomSphere is a cloud-based software Platform as a Service used by customers that want to integrate their various cloud-based applications with each other and with on-premise applications. New functionality provided as part of an upgrade last summer allows usage of multiple data sources and reservation of cloud resources for real-time data transfer in integration processes. The company announced in February that the AtomSphere platform is now handling more than a million integration processes per day. That number is 250% higher than it was a year ago.

Company: Enstratius

Product: Enstratius

Category: Cloud infrastructure management

Enstratius provides cross-platform cloud infrastructure management for public, private and hybrid clouds that can be closely aligned with an enterprise's governance and security requirements. Features include self-service provisioning/de-provisioning of cloud resources; multi-currency cost/chargeback tracking; customizable role-based access controls; single login to manage all cloud resources; and, support for enterprise authentication systems including SAML 2.0 and OpenID.

Enstratius also supports integration with management tools and the orchestration of configuration management tools such as Chef and Puppet across clouds; automated encryption of all cloud data in transit and at rest with all keys stored outside of the cloud and full application automation including auto-scaling, auto-recovery, cloud bursting.

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