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Clumio Discover gives customers full view of AWS snapshots

With the consolidated and contextualized information that Clumio Discover provides, customers with large, sprawling AWS environments can make better snapshot policy decisions.

Clumio's new tool lets customers quickly get an idea of how well they are protecting their AWS accounts.

Clumio Discover trawls through AWS snapshots in Amazon EC2, EBS, RDS and DynamoDB and displays this information in a useful fashion. From the Clumio Discover dashboard, customers can immediately learn how many snapshots are older than 30 days, what assets have no recent snapshots, which snapshots are orphaned and how much money they are spending each month on snapshots. Clumio Discover queries this data in real time, giving customers an accurate representation of the current state of their AWS snapshots.

With this information, customers can take actions to optimize their costs. For example, they can delete the orphaned snapshots that are stored in S3 and continue to incur a monthly charge. Clumio Discover also provides historical data on snapshots and allows this information to be parsed by asset type. This information can help customers decide if they are protecting too much or too little and adjust their snapshot policies accordingly.

Clumio Discover isn't pulling data that AWS customers can't get themselves, said Chadd Kenney, vice president of product at Clumio. However, the tool organizes that data in a way that's easy to understand at a glance and contextualizes it with history and derived data such as estimated monthly cost.

"AWS does not make things easy. In AWS, you just get a full, long list of all your snapshots -- that's not easy to understand," Kenney said. Consolidating the AWS snapshot data and giving it context allows customers to make meaningful decisions on their AWS snapshotting habits, Kenney added.

Clumio Discover displays AWS snapshots even if they aren't being managed by Clumio Protect, the vendor's data protection product for AWS native services and VMware cloud on AWS. Protect provides visibility and management controls to help customers avoid the problems that Discover reveals. Clumio Discover displays the estimated cost savings for customers, had their AWS snapshots been managed through Clumio Protect as a way of enticing customers toward a purchase.

Clumio Discover is available free of charge and can be found on AWS Marketplace. It doesn't need Clumio Protect to run.

Screenshot of Clumio Discover
Clumio Discover provides a lot of AWS snapshot information at a glance.

Too big to handle

The problem with AWS is it lends itself to sprawl, said GigaOm analyst Enrico Signoretti. It starts off cheap and grows so gradually that customers don't realize when they lost track of what is and isn't protected. That's when they end up with snapshots they don't need, unprotected volumes or snapshot policies that don't line up with the criticality of the data.

It gives you more control over the common mistakes people make with large AWS environments.
Enrico SignorettiAnalyst, GigaOm

Clumio Discover isn't helpful for small environments, but customers with large, complex AWS environments can greatly benefit from the information the tool surfaces, Signoretti said.

"It gives you more control over the common mistakes people make with large AWS environments," Signoretti said.

There's no "secret sauce" behind Clumio Discover, Signoretti said -- it uses readily available APIs to collect data, builds an interface for displaying that data and adds derived info to contextualize the data. Nonetheless, it's a useful tool for larger organizations that are heavily deployed on AWS. For the most part, those businesses recognize their data sprawl as a problem and have demanded a tool such as Clumio Discover, Signoretti said.

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