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Container Monitoring as a Service: Growing MSP Opportunity?

Similar to when virtualization arrived on the scene and changed the landscape of IT infrastructure, containers are causing another shift in IT deployments. Virtual machines typically run with a full operating system, with the software the business requires built inside. One physical machine could have multiple operating systems running on top of a virtualization platform. In contrast, containerized applications can share a single operating system kernel which allows them to be more lightweight and use fewer resources.

This doesn't necessarily mean that virtualization and containerization need to be competing technologies. In fact, many businesses will run containers inside a virtualized environment. The telecom and IT vertical is expected to adopt containers quickly over the next few years to help modernize, automate, and accelerate technology environments. IT departments are focused on improving IT performance, reducing cost, and enhancing a digital experience. Utilizing containers can help businesses meet these goals.

MSPs and Container Monitoring

This shift towards containers is also changing how MSPs are monitoring client infrastructures. MSPs seem to be gradually expanding their monitoring capabilities. In the early days, MSPs would simply monitor server load, and then individual desktops were added and now monitoring cloud solutions and IoT devices are important services to add. It seems that MSPs could be headed towards performing the majority of their client work at a remote location through monitoring and proactively preventing issues instead of being required to roll onsite when issues arise.

With this widespread adoption imminent, monitoring for containers will be a service that expected to grow significantly over the next few years. Indeed, spending on container monitoring should reach $706.2 million by 2022, up from $169.6 million in 2017, according to MarketsandMarkets research. That's a 33 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR), the researcher says.

The report also claims that due to the presence of a large number of container monitoring vendors, North America is expected to hold the largest market size in the Container Monitoring Market; whereas, Europe is expected to be the fastest-growing region during the forecast period. Some factors that are driving this growth are growing DevOps and focus on digital transformations within business environments. The report also believes that the market in major regions, such as Latin AmericaAsia Pacific (APAC), and Middle East and Africa (MEA), is expected to grow due to the increasing need to optimize application performance.

Container Monitoring Software Tools

Currently, the major market vendors providing the container monitoring solution and services are CA Technologies (US), AppDynamics (US), Splunk (US), Dynatrace (US), Datadog (US), BMC Software (US), Sysdig (US), SignalFx (US), Wavefront (US), and CoScale (Belgium), among others, according to Markets and  Markets. And in an earlier ChannelE2E blog, we noted these tools as potential Docker monitoring options for MSPs.

To capitalize on the container market's growth, MSPs would be smart to help their clients choose a monitoring solution, and offer services that will help businesses interpret the data. With the expert analysis of the data provided by a monitoring service, MSPs would be able to help clients make decisions about their infrastructure. This analysis, recommendation, and deployment of solutions cycle can prove to be a profitable service for MSPs to offer a client who may not understand what to do with the data found from monitoring, just as many are currently doing with the monitoring of other critical business deployments.