Cloud computing is by far one of the leading trends in today’s IT world. More and more companies worldwide are moving their IT infrastructure to public clouds. At some point, you need an effective log management and analytics solution that enables your IT team to monitor the company’s cloud infrastructure and process server logs. And this is where the ELK stack comes into play. What do you need to know about this solution? And why is ELK log analysis beneficial for your company? Let’s get right to it.
First of all, let’s focus on the basics. Today, every company that has its IT infrastructure in the cloud aims to maintain optimum performance and security. The reasons are clear: performance and security issues can adversely affect an entire company’s operation and, in some cases, become a direct cause of revenue loss. In order to monitor and keep everything in place, IT departments rely on different types of data (logs, metrics, alerts) generated by these cloud-based applications and the infrastructure that supports them. To make that monitoring effective, many organizations utilize ELK log analyses. But first things first.
What is ELK stack?
In short, ELK is an acronym for three open-source projects:
- Elasticsearch (a search and analytics engine)
- Logstash (a log aggregator collecting data from various sources)
- Kibana (data visualization feature based on Elasticsearch)
When combined, these three solutions are commonly used to monitor, troubleshoot, and secure IT infrastructures, especially those that are cloud-based. In other words, we can say that Elasticsearch indexes and stores data, Logstash is a solution that takes care of collecting and processing it, and Kibana offers data visualization and an interface that makes the entire ELK stack more usable.
WHY IS ELK STACK SO CRITICAL?
Simply put, it’s because it provides a comprehensive log analysis solution that allows developers and engineers to obtain valuable insights into possible failure diagnosis, application performance, and infrastructure monitoring. Still, many companies don’t use such a solution, which can cause some serious complications. Primarily, this is because every time you need to access critical information about your system’s performance or security, you have to enter the VM (Virtual Machine), which is a more complicated and time-consuming task. Furthermore, a lack of systematic log storage and management policy can make this critical information really hard to retrieve.
So in short, we can say that the ELK stack significantly simplifies the process of analyzing logs and other IT systems’ metrics.
ELK log analysis
With this introduction done, we can turn our attention to ELK log analysis. As we mentioned in the first part of this post, log analysis is critical from the operational and business point of view. System failures, downtimes, insufficient performance – all these complications can affect the entire company.
To ensure that every IT service, app, and algorithm is available, secure, and fully operational, IT departments conduct ELK log analyses based on analyzing data coming from IT infrastructure. This data mainly comprises event logs and specific metrics, including performance.
However, because current IT infrastructures are complex, extensive, and can consist of thousands of containers and microservices, the log analysis process itself can be challenging. A comprehensive one-stop solution is needed, and this is where ELK log analysis comes in handy. With the ELK stack, developers and IT engineers can easily conduct systems analyses and get the necessary insights that are needed to ensure everything is working properly.
What do you need ELK stack for? Major benefit
We have already mentioned some of the chief benefits but there’s more. Thanks to this solution, your company:
- Lowers the IT maintenance costs. Primarily because the ELK stack offers a quick and efficient monitoring solution that helps your IT department keep everything under control.
- Detects problems and breaches in real time, which allows for the taking of immediate remediation actions.
- Has a standardized method of storing logs that enables quick and easy access to necessary data. This benefit is especially important for financial institutions that are obliged to store log information for an extended period of time.
- Uses a central log platform that prevents data loss, which is important when cloud servers are added or removed. Without a specific solution, when a server is removed, all the logs are deleted with it.
- Gets a quick and easy access to necessary information. There is no need for an additional administrator or DevOps work
- Get useful information about users’ behavior , which can be analyzed for business purposes.
At this point, it is vital to mention that the majority of companies do not decide to implement their own ELK stack solutions. This is primarily because it’s a costly and time-consuming task. Thankfully, you are not on your own. AWS, provides their own Elasticsearch service that’s fully manageable and scalable.
With AWS Elasticsearchyou can build, monitor, and troubleshoot your applications and infrastructure at any scale. Not only does AWS Elasticsearch offer integration with Elasticsearch, Kibana, and Logstash, it can also be integrated with other AWS services, creating one comprehensive cloud computing service. Companies like Tameshi offer ELK stack managing services that simply lift this entire sphere of IT off your shoulders.
We can help you with:
- Extracting business information from logs
- ELK stack configuration
- Aggregation of logs from various sources to a single central log platform
- Data visualization via legible dashboards
- Creating a system integration and authentication with external systems
- Creating log archives
- Setting up abnormality alerts, and many more.
If you want to find out more about the ELK stack and how we can help you – drop us a line. We will gladly show you all the benefits of our service and set everything up for you.