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Introducing VM Manager: Operate large Compute Engine fleets with ease

January 28, 2021
Ravi Kiran Chintalapudi

Product Manager

Senanu Aggor

Product Marketing Manager

Enterprises are accelerating their digital transformation—moving more and more workloads to the cloud. The cloud can often be complex, however, with unfamiliar tools to manage and operate large fleets of virtual machines (VM). In particular, managing infrastructure security and compliance visibility at cloud scale can be challenging for infrastructure and operations administrators. Customers tell us they need simplified cloud-native tools to operate and manage their cloud resources, similar to their familiar on-premises infrastructure management tools.

Today, we are excited to announce VM Manager, a suite of infrastructure management tools to simplify and automate the maintenance of large fleets of Compute Engine VMs. This cloud-native solution has Google-scale infrastructure in mind, providing a simplified toolset for automated compliance reporting and software deployment at scale.

VM Manager’s automated features simplify and reduce the complexity of ensuring compliance, observability, and maintaining the security of large VM fleets. It features a single dashboard to increase compliance visibility and real-time tracking of inventory data to drive actionable insights and maintain peak infrastructure performance. The suite supports the most common Windows and Linux operating system environments, and includes the following services:

  • Patch management: This service keeps your systems up-to-date against vulnerabilities by allowing you to apply OS patches across a set of VMs, receive patch compliance data across your OS environments, and automate installation of OS patches across VMs—all from one centralized location. 

    The patch management service has two main components - patch compliance reporting, which provides insights on the patch status of your VMs across Windows and Linux distributions; and patch deployment, which automates the OS and software patch update process. A patch deployment schedules patch jobs.

  • Configuration management: This service allows you to deploy, query, and maintain consistent configurations for your VMs. It comes with automated remediation features to reduce manual effort and keep your fleet compliant. Guest policies on each Compute Engine VM keep your software configurations consistent.

    "With infrastructure that supports hundreds of millions of players globally, maintaining consistent configurations of our virtual machine instances is critical. Configuration management has reduced the manual effort involved in this process, with features that enable King to manage our resources at scale." - Martin Danko, Senior DevOps Engineer, King

  • Inventory management lets you collect your OS and package information. You can identify which VMs are running a specific version of an OS system, view packages that are installed on a VM, generate a list of package updates available for each VM, and identify missing packages, updates, or patches for a VM.

    Inventory management is integrated with another Google Cloud product, Cloud Asset Inventory to simplify viewing, monitoring, and analyzing your Google Cloud fleet data.

In addition to the above, VM Manager has a strong roadmap of exciting capabilities launching in the coming months, so stay tuned.

Manage the largest fleets with ease

VM Manager reduces complexity, improves security and compliance reporting, and simplifies monitoring resources in a large cloud environment. By taking advantage of automated tools to keep systems up-to-date, reduce the risk of downtime, and improve productivity of internal users, early VM Manager users tell us that it allows their IT administrators to focus on other business critical tasks.

"We are excited for the launch of VM Manager on Google Cloud. Cloud infrastructure management is a challenge for enterprises of any size, and we have already driven efficiency with the automated features of Patch and Configuration Manager both for ourselves internally and for our customers. Atos is excited to bring additional value to customers with Google Cloud's cloud-native solution for managing large VM fleets." - Ovidiu Julean, Tower Architect, Atos

To learn more about VM Manager, visit the documentation, or watch our Google Cloud Next ‘20: OnAir session, Managing Large Compute Engine VM Fleets.

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