The Daily Cloud: Our Top 10 Articles of 2020

9 Min Read

The CloudHealth blog—“The Daily Cloud”—is designed to provide relevant, helpful, and enjoyable content to help enable our readers’ success along their cloud journey. We create a lot of content for The Daily Cloud, with contributors from across the public cloud community. In effect, our blog can be seen as a repository for analysis on how the biggest developments in the cloud world affect the organizations that increasingly rely on the cloud to support their strategic decisions.

As 2020 comes to a close, we want to take the opportunity to look back at what we’ve written this year, and more importantly, what’s resonated most with the cloud community. 

The Daily Cloud’s top 10 most popular articles of 2020

1. One Year After AWS Savings Plans: What Have We Learned?

In November 2019, AWS rolled out its new discount program—AWS Savings Plans—giving cloud managers a new option to save money by making an advanced financial commitment for one or three years. So, after a year of working with AWS Savings Plans, what have we learned? This article shares our three key takeaways from our experiences with thousands of customers who buy discounts from AWS. 

Over the last year, we’ve also created several other resources to help customers understand the benefits of Savings Plans, how they work, what they cost, and how to best leverage them with their workloads:

The Ultimate Guide To AWS Savings Plans

2. How to Prevent Your Cloud Finances From Sinking You During Economic Turbulence

COVID-19 has changed—and will continue to change—how much of the world operates, impacting the lives of people all over the world and forcing organizations to make changes to business operations just to stay afloat. 

In this article, we provide an action plan and best practices for businesses to rise above economic turbulence with a cloud financial management practice. Learn more here.

And if you’re looking for additional insights into the economic effects of COVID-19, along with resources to help your organization adapt, see our content below: 

3. S3 Cost: Amazon Cloud Storage Costs Explained

Amazon’s Simple Storage Service (S3) is the world's most popular cloud object storage solution due to its durability, availability, and scalability. So it’s no surprise that this was one of our most popular articles. 

Contrary to the name Simple Storage Service, S3 cost calculations are far from simple. In this article, we explain what makes pricing so complex and what you can do about it. We’ve also recently updated this article with five frequently asked questions (and answers) about Amazon S3. Learn more here.

In addition to S3, we’ve created several other resources to help cloud customers understand, manage, and optimize their cloud costs. Check them out below: 

The Ultimate Guide to Amazon Cloud Storage Pricing

4. Managing Cloud Costs with Kubernetes: 5 Questions You Should Be Asking

Kubernetes has quickly emerged as one of the leading cloud technologies—and for good reason. Kubernetes makes it possible to deploy modern applications that are scalable, modular, and fault-tolerant. 

With all the benefits of Kubernetes, there are also challenges. As more and more teams start to adopt containers and Kubernetes to develop and deliver their applications, your landscape can quickly become crowded and fragmented. 

The CloudHealth team has created several resources to help customers who are leveraging Kubernetes or container environments (or thinking about taking that step) get the most out of their investment. A good place to start is with our article that covers five questions your cloud management team should be asking in order to understand, align, and report on Kubernetes performance and costs. 

Additional resources we suggest reading include: 

Tackle These 6 Common Container Challenges

5. The Key to a Meaningful Cloud Cost Analysis is a Global Tagging Policy

If you’ve been in a position where it’s virtually impossible to extract meaningful data from a cloud cost analysis, you’ve probably wondered how much easier it would be if every user tagged resources in the same way.

This article explains the challenges with tagging, especially in hybrid and multi-cloud environments, and best practices to develop and enforce a global tagging policy that enables meaningful cloud cost analysis.  

We also recommend checking out these articles for additional tagging tips and best practices: 

6. Azure vs. AWS Comparison: Is Azure Really Catching Up?

When comparing the leading cloud providers in terms of market share, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has consistently led the pack, followed by Microsoft Azure. Is that still the case today? Given that this article made it into our top 10 most viewed articles from 2020, it’s clear that this is a popular question.

We’re not giving away any spoilers here! See our article to learn more, as we dive into the cloud market landscape, conduct an AWS vs Azure comparison, and provide key considerations when it comes to your decisions in the cloud.

And if you’re looking for more cloud service provider comparisons, the team at CloudHealth has created several resources to help you compare services across security, cost management, containers, and more:

Comparing Services For The Big Three Cloud Providers

7. Key Takeaways from The Forrester Wave™: Cloud Cost Management and Optimization Report

Earlier this year, Forrester released The Forrester Wave™: Cloud Cost Management and Optimization, Q4 2020 report. If you’re not familiar, The Forrester Wave™ is a guide created to help buyers evaluate a shortlist of vendors in order to make the right purchasing decisions for their business.

Of the vendors selected in this year’s Cloud Cost Management and Optimization report, we’re excited to share that CloudHealth by VMware was named a Leader!

Analyst Report
The Forrester Wave™: Cloud Cost Management And Optimization, Q4 2020

In this article, we take you through the vendor requirements, evaluation criteria, and key takeaways for cloud financial management and FinOps professionals. 

CloudHealth was featured in several other analyst reports throughout 2020, including The Forrester Wave™: Hybrid Cloud Management, Q4 2020 and Omdia Universe: Selecting a Hybrid and Multicloud Management Solution, 2020-21. See them all in our resource center here.

8. How CloudHealth Differs from AWS and Azure Native Tools

Public cloud adoption—and more specifically multi-cloud adoption—is ramping up as enterprises seek improved agility, faster time to market, and decreased risk. Conversely, many businesses unexpectedly discover that their environment is multi-cloud, and must then face the challenge of retrofitting a strategy that accommodates multiple public clouds.

As a result, there’s an increasing need for enterprises to leverage a cloud management platform to optimize, secure, and govern their public cloud or multi-cloud infrastructure. In this article, we break down the differences between cloud service providers’ native tools and CloudHealth, including visibility, ease-of-use, and reporting, as well as security, financial, operations, and governance management capabilities. Learn more here.

For more resources comparing cloud management solutions, see our content below: 

The Cloud Management Platform Buyer's Guide

9. Cloud KPIs You Need to Measure Success

To monitor success, the most successful organizations benchmark and track their progress at each stage of the cloud maturity model. We wrote this article to help identify the key cloud management metrics you should be measuring across cloud visibility, optimization, governance, automation, and business integration. 

If you’re looking for more metrics and best practices specifically around cloud cost optimization, we recommend the following:

10. You Need a Cloud Center of Excellence Now More Than Ever

Given the events of 2020, old ways of responding to financial and market crises just don’t apply. Businesses are reducing, shifting, or even increasing their cloud spend, and since every decision weighs heavily, organizations need a Cloud Center of Excellence (CCoE) now more than ever. 

A CCoE is a cross-functional team tasked with supporting and governing the execution of an organization's cloud strategy. The team facilitates collaboration and adoption of best practices across a range of disciplines—primarily operations, finance, security, engineering, and enterprise architecture. Our article explains the challenges organization’s face and reasons why a CCoE is critical for achieving success in the cloud. Learn more here

We also recommend the following resources that explain how to establish a CCoE, including details on real customer examples:

The Next Generation of Cloud Management Starts with a Cloud Center of Excellence

We hope this list was helpful for you. If you’re looking for even more resources, there’s plenty more articles to discover on our blog, categorized by what’s important to you—optimization tips, cloud financial management, cloud comparisons, success stories, cloud security, and more.

Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Take our five-minute survey to receive a detailed cloud management checklist, which shows your results compared to other survey respondents and specific recommendations to help you take the next steps in your cloud maturity journey. Get started today!

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Lauren van der Vaart, Senior Content Marketing Specialist

Lauren is a member of the Digital Marketing team at CloudHealth by VMware. She focuses on delivering valuable, relevant, and actionable content for customers on their cloud journey. Before joining CloudHealth, Lauren held various roles across digital and field marketing for global technology organizations.

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