IDG Contributor Network: Who needs monitoring in a serverless world?


Like many, I was at the AWS Re:Invent conference in Las Vegas in December. No surprise—lots going on in the fast-moving world of cloud computing. In particular, the rise of serverless technology left many asking, what monitoring do you really need if it’s all taken care of in the cloud?

A serverless technology primer

Serverless is essentially functions-as-a-service. It allows a development team to upload its application code without worrying a bit about provisioning and patching servers or containers, managing scaling, or redundancy. Pricewise, it’s often a win because you only pay for an actual code execution, not idle servers. It’s a continuation of the evolution we’ve seen in IT over the past decades from bare-metal servers to virtual machines, and then containers.

Amazon was first to the punch with its well-received offering of AWS Lambda in 2014, and Microsoft and Google have followed suit with Azure Functions and Google Cloud Functions in 2016.

Overall this has been well received by the development and devops communities. It’s an abstraction that makes sense, and if Amazon and others can show they can be relied on to handle the messy work of load balancing, provisioning, and high availability, most teams are ready to hand over their money.

offers an entertaining account of life in this serverless world:

Making my life less miserable

What if I didn’t need to push code to AWS every time I wanted to test something? All heroes don’t wear capes. Like a knight in shining armor, comes barging in to save the day! At least now I can test all my code locally before pushing it to AWS. That’s a relief.

So, here’s to embracing the serverless world, and adapting to the new paradigm of monitoring.

This article is published as part of the IDG Contributor Network.