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InfoQ Homepage News Amazon Releases Container Monitoring for Amazon ECS, EKS, and Kubernetes via CloudWatch

Amazon Releases Container Monitoring for Amazon ECS, EKS, and Kubernetes via CloudWatch

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Recently, Amazon announced that customers can now monitor, isolate, and diagnose their containerized applications and microservices environments using Amazon CloudWatch Container Insights. Cloud Insights is a part of Amazon CloudWatch, a fully-managed monitoring and observability service in AWS targeted for DevOps engineers, developers, site reliability engineers (SREs), and IT managers. 

During the AWS Summit last July, the tech giant announced the Container Insights support for Amazon ECS and AWS Fargate in CloudWatch as an open preview for new clusters. Now the Container Insights is generally available and will also cover existing clusters, and has been extended to Kubernetes and Amazon ECS for Kubernetes. Furthermore, the service will also discover all of the running containers in a cluster and collects performance and operational data at every layer in the container stack.

Users can enable Container Insights on existing Amazon ECS clusters using AWS CLI or on new clusters using either the Amazon ECS console or the AWS CLI according to the documentation. Once Container Insights is enabled, users can see a new option for Container Insights in the list of dashboards available to them via the CloudWatch console for their region. Through the Container Insights options, users can go to the relevant dashboard where they can select the container management service that hosts the clusters that they want to observe. 


In the CloudWatch Container Insight dashboards, users can:

  • Have operational oversight of the overall performance of the cluster
  • Drill down deeper into a cluster to view the metrics for the tasks inside the cluster
  • Select a container, which allows them to then dive into either AWS X-Ray traces or performance logs

Moreover, by selecting performance logs, users will end up at the Amazon CloudWatch Logs Insights page where they can run queries against the performance events collected for their container ecosystem (e.g., Container, Task/Pod, Cluster, etc.) to troubleshoot and dive deeper.

In a detailed blog post on Amazon CloudWatch Container Insights for Amazon ECS, Sirirat Kongdee wrote: 

In the past, you had to implement custom metrics. Now, CloudWatch Container Insights for Amazon ECS helps you focus on monitoring and managing your application so that you can respond quickly to operational issues. The service provides sharper insight into your Amazon ECS clusters, services, and tasks through added CPU and memory metrics. You can use CloudWatch Log Insights for right-sizing, alarms, scaling, and query performance log metrics that drive more informed analysis.

In comparison to CloudWatch Container Insights, Microsoft recently further enhanced their monitoring capability for containers running in AKS by integrating Prometheus with Azure Monitor for Containers. This integration is currently in preview and provides significant insights in AKS workloads.

The CloudWatch Container Insights is available in any public AWS regions where the Amazon Elastic Container Service for Kubernetes, Kubernetes, Amazon ECS, and AWS Fargate are present. Pricing details for the service are available on the pricing page.

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