GCP Monitoring Tools: Top 10 Picks for 2024

Better Stack Team
Updated on January 5, 2024

In today's rapidly evolving technological landscape, businesses and organizations are increasingly reliant on cloud platforms to power their operations efficiently and at scale. Among these platforms, Google Cloud Platform (GCP) stands out as one of the main powerhouses along with Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, offering a wide array of services that cater to various business use cases.

As organizations migrate their critical workloads to the cloud, the complexity of managing these distributed and dynamic environments grows significantly. This is where GCP's monitoring tools enter the scene, serving as indispensable instruments in maintaining the health and performance of cloud infrastructures. These tools are primarily used to detect, diagnose, and resolve issues to ensure uninterrupted operations.

Beyond issue resolution, monitoring tools drive proactive optimization so that bottlenecks and anomalies can be uncovered and corrected before they lead to serious problems.

In this article, we will discuss a variety of GCP monitoring tools, ranging from native offerings to third-party open source and commercial solutions. We will also discuss the features and benefits of each tool so you can decide which one is right for you.

Benefits of monitoring your GCP environment


Effectively monitoring your Google Cloud Platform resources serves the fundamental purpose of ensuring seamless operations within your allocated budget. Establishing a robust GCP monitoring strategy enables you to attain the following objectives:

  • Monitor the performance of all GCP resources to ensure efficiency and meet performance expectations. Analyzing metrics such as CPU utilization, memory consumption, and response times facilitates the identification of bottlenecks and areas for enhancement.

  • Swiftly detect issues in your environment and take corrective measures to minimize downtime and service interruptions.

  • Gain insights into resource utilization trends, enabling the identification of peak demand periods, scalability planning, and optimal resource allocation to prevent unnecessary expenses.

  • Identify abnormal access patterns and unauthorized modifications, enabling timely interventions to secure your environment and uphold compliance obligations.

  • Maintain compliance with Service Level Agreements (SLAs) by monitoring metrics related to uptime, response times, and availability.

  • Facilitate root cause identification during troubleshooting sessions, contributing to improved reliability and prevention of recurrence.

With these key considerations for adopting a monitoring tool in mind, let's delve into a discussion of 10 prominent GCP monitoring solutions available.

Google Cloud native monitoring tools

As you embark on your GCP monitoring journey, it's advisable to first explore the solutions offered natively before delving into third-party options. Here are some of the primary native monitoring tools provided by Google Cloud Platform:

1. Google Cloud Monitoring

GCP Monitoring.png

Cloud Monitoring is a comprehensive service that allows you to monitor the health, performance, and availability of your applications and infrastructure deployed on Google Cloud. It can collect metrics, traces, and events from your applications and resources and create dashboards to visualize the metrics that are most important to you.

As a native GCP offering, is tightly integrated with various Google Cloud services, including Compute Engine, Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE), Cloud Functions, and more. This allows you to gain insights into the performance of these services and make informed decisions about scaling and optimization. In addition to the built-in metrics provided by GCP services, you can also define and send your own custom metrics through their Ops monitoring agent.

It also provides the ability to define and track Service Level Objectives (SLO) for applications and alert you when violations occur. Alerts can also be created for other scenarios such as faulty deployments, high response times, and other unexpected behavior. These alerts can be delivered via email, SMS, Slack, PagerDuty, and more.

While its not a logging tool, it integrates with Google Cloud Logging (see below) for correlating ingested log data with metrics and events, providing a more comprehensive view of everything in your cloud environment.

Cloud Monitoring pros

  • Tightly integrates with various Google Cloud services providing seamless monitoring capabilities for resources deployed in the Google Cloud Platform.

  • It offers an extensive set of built-in metrics while providing the ability to define custom metrics.

  • It offers a managed service for operating Prometheus at scale.

  • It supports uptime monitoring for URLs, VMs, Load Balancers, and more using probes from around the globe to detect geographical issues.

Cloud Monitoring cons

  • While Google Cloud Monitoring supports multi-cloud monitoring (especially with AWS), it's coverage is not as extensive as specialized cross-cloud monitoring tools.

  • It add significant costs to your GCP account, especially for large scale deployments.

  • It's not as customizable as competing solutions.

2. Google Cloud Logging

GCP Logging.png

Google Cloud Logging is a centralized log management service that allows you to collect, view, and analyze log data generated by various resources and services within your GCP environment. It serves as a centralized hub for aggregating logs from a wide array of sources, including applications, virtual machines, containers, and other GCP services. This approach simplifies log management by providing a single interface to access and explore log data, so that you can monitor system behavior, troubleshoot issues, and track performance in real time.

One of the key strengths of Google Cloud Logging is its seamless integration with other GCP services and resources running on the platform. It's designed to ingest and securely store your logs with no setup required, and it provides the ability to configure various retention polices as needed. Additionally, the service offers regionalized logging features to store your data in a specific location, or storing for a longer duration at lower cost by exporting into Cloud Storage.

When it comes to log monitoring, Google Cloud Logging provides several tools you can take advantage of. Its Log Explorer interface allows you to search, sort, and query logs, and you can perform aggregate operations, generate insights and trends using Log Analytics. It also facilitates proactive monitoring through customizable alerts triggered by predefined log conditions, ensuring that critical events are promptly addressed.

Cloud Logging pros

  • Centralized log management for all GCP resources.
  • Application error alerts are delivered in real-time.
  • Automatically captures audit logs and stores them for 400 days at no extra cost.
  • Provides region based log storage.

Cloud Logging cons

  • It is primarily tailored to Google Cloud so it may not be the best solution for multi-cloud users.
  • It can be a bit slow when searching for the older logs.

3. Managed Service for Prometheus

GCP Prometheus (1).png

Prometheus is an open-source monitoring and alerting toolkit that is widely used for collecting and recording time-series metrics from various systems. It's commonly used for monitoring the performance and health of applications and infrastructure. Google Cloud's Prometheus offering is a fully managed version of Prometheus that lets you globally monitor and alert on your workloads without having to manually deploy, manage and operate Prometheus at scale.

It lets you gathers metrics through various Prometheus exporters and allows you to query the collected data using PromQL, Grafana, or any other tool that integrates with the Prometheus API. It is also compatible with hybrid and multi-cloud environments, and can monitor both Kubernetes and VM workloads with data retention for up to 24 months at no additional charge.

Managed Prometheus pros

  • Helps offload the burden of deploying, scaling, and maintaining Prometheus infrastructure.
  • Designed to be a drop-in replacement for your own Prometheus stack.
  • It is backed by the same technology used to collect over 2 trillion metrics at Google.
  • It is cloud-agnostic as it uses open standards and protocols.
  • Offers APIs to easily ingest metrics from Kubernetes.
  • You can use any dashboarding tool as long as it integrates with the Prometheus API.

Managed Prometheus cons

  • It can be pricey.

Google Cloud third-party monitoring tools

While Google Cloud Platform provides comprehensive native monitoring tools, there are scenarios where utilizing third-party monitoring solutions can offer distinct advantages. This becomes especially pertinent when overseeing a multi-cloud strategy involving various cloud providers or when handling a hybrid architecture encompassing on-premises setups.

In this section, we'll dive into some of the top third-party services suited for monitoring your GCP environment:

4. Better Stack


Better Stack is a comprehensive observability platform catering to a wide array of application environments, offering efficient log management, uptime monitoring, and incident management. Leveraging its proprietary ClickHouse-based technology, it simplifies log management, leading to enhanced efficiency and cost savings when compared to alternative tools. Better Stack empowers you to seamlessly navigate through vast amounts of log data, execute searches and filters, visualize insights, and promptly receive alerts upon detecting anomalies.

It provides an integrated dashboard that encompasses uptime monitoring and incident management. Each error occurrence is meticulously captured, accompanied by a screenshot, error log, second-by-second incident chronology, post-mortem analysis, and advanced escalation protocols. The system also includes on-call scheduling capabilities ensuring proactive planning and swift response by designated first-responders. To address downtime, you can create and publish personalized status pages so that your

Better Stack pros

  • Utilizes SQL for log data queries, eliminating the need to learn a new query language.

  • Cost-effective for logging, uptime monitoring, and incident management.

  • Features advanced on-call scheduling and incident management.

  • Provides a modern interface surpassing competitors.

  • Presents aesthetically pleasing, branded status pages for resource tracking.

Better Stack cons

  • Limited integrations compared to some other tools.
  • Application performance monitoring (APM) functionality is not available.

5. Datadog


Datadog is a widely-used observability platform that provides a comprehensive suite of infrastructure monitoring tools tailored for logs, metrics, events, application errors, and more. Within the context of Google Cloud Platform, Datadog's monitoring capabilities enable you to seamlessly gather, visualize, analyze, and set alerts on aggregated data sourced from your GCP resources and applications.

When you establish a connection between your GCP account and Datadog, you can efficiently gather logs, metrics, and events from an extensive array of GCP services. This includes prominent services like Google Compute Engine, Google Cloud SQL, Cloud Storage (GCS), Google Cloud Functions, and numerous others. Additionally, Datadog allows you to monitor Cloud Monitoring alarms and effortlessly access status updates through its Events Explorer interface.

Datadog encompasses a Cloud Security Management solution that provides real-time threat detection and continuous configuration audits spanning your entire cloud infrastructure. These tools grant you visibility into your configuration status, facilitate threat detection implementation, and support automated incident responses. The platform also addresses cloud cost monitoring, database health tracking, and offers comprehensive end-to-end visibility in scenarios involving hybrid or multi-cloud environments.

Datadog pros

  • Rich feature set for monitoring applications and infrastructure, suited for complex cloud setups.

  • Broad integrations with diverse tools and services simplify data collection, correlation, and monitoring.

  • Integrates seamlessly with tools like Terraform for incorporating monitoring configurations during cloud resource provisioning.

  • Offers robust dashboard solutions for visualizing a variety of data sources.

Datadog cons

  • Datadog can be expensive, occasionally surpassing the cost of monitored resources.

  • Its comprehensive features and customization options come with a significant learning curve, even for experienced monitoring tool users.

6. Dynatrace


Dynatrace offers an extensive infrastructure and full-stack monitoring solution that effectively covers a diverse array of Google Cloud Platform services. This coverage can be achieved through their OneAgent technology, which is compatible with GCP resources such as Google Compute Engine, Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE), and serverless functions. Alternatively, you can choose to ingest logs, events, and metrics from Google Cloud Monitoring for comprehensive monitoring.

When utilizing Dynatrace for GCP monitoring, you can expect consistent out-of-the-box metrics, pre-configured dashboards, and immediate alerts once monitoring is initiated. This setup provides users with instant visibility into the performance of their GCP resources and applications. Furthermore, the platform offers flexibility by allowing log monitoring, encompassing logs from both GCP services and self-hosted services running on virtual machines or containers within the GCP environment.

Dynatrace pros

  • User-friendly alerting and incident management features.

  • Facilitates multi-cloud and hybrid setups, allowing network tracing and interaction visualization with minimal setup.

  • Simplified host instrumentation via OneAgent technology.

  • Effective performance in dynamic environments with auto-scaling.

Dynatrace cons

  • Absence of a free plan, with only a 15-day trial period.

  • High cost, particularly notable for extensive cloud setups.

7. NewRelic

New Relic.png

New Relic's infrastructure monitoring delivers a dynamic and adaptable approach to observing your entire infrastructure, spanning services operating within Google Cloud Platform or on dedicated hosts, as well as containers within Kubernetes. Its integration with GCP offers comprehensive visibility into the services you leverage, including popular ones like Google Compute Engine, Google Cloud Storage, Google Cloud SQL, and more.

A standout feature of New Relic is its capability to provide an accurate portrayal of all your Google Compute Engine instances, enabling you to dynamically adjust instance counts in response to evolving requirements, ensuring optimal resource allocation. Recognizing that certain instances hold greater significance than others, New Relic furnishes the ability to examine and categorize your hosts based on attributes such as role, tier, availability zone, data center, or custom GCE tags.

Additionally, New Relic aids in monitoring your GCP costs, which proves especially useful when working with a diverse range of GCP services. Its cost and forecasting dashboards offer insights that empower precise budget anticipation, leading to enhanced financial accuracy and better decision-making.

NewRelic pros

  • Offers full-stack monitoring for applications and infrastructure in on-premises and cloud setups.

  • Provides leading application performance monitoring (APM) solutions.

  • Generous free trial featuring 100 GB monthly data ingest without credit card requirement.

  • Simplified pricing model compared to competitors.

NewRelic cons

  • Infrastructure monitoring and logging solutions are less comprehensive compared to their APM solution.

  • Their query language (NRQL) is less advanced than SQL for querying.

8. Site24x7


Site24x7 delivers a comprehensive monitoring solution tailored for Google Cloud Platform, enabling you to oversee the health, performance, and uptime of your cloud resources and application workloads. Through Site24x7, you gain the capability to monitor a wide range of GCP resources and services, encompassing Google Compute Engine instances, Cloud SQL databases, Load Balancers, Google Cloud Storage (GCS) buckets, and more. Seamless integration with GCP's native monitoring tools ensures easy access to essential performance metrics, alongside the flexibility to configure custom alerts and notifications based on these metrics.

The platform's auto-discovery features automatically integrate new GCP resources into the monitoring process, minimizing the need for manual configurations. A variety of pre-built dashboards facilitate visualizing your GCP environment's status and the evolution of each resource type over specific timeframes.

Furthermore, Site24x7 assists in configuring and deploying GCP resources following industry-recognized best practices through its Guidance Report checks. These checks offer over 150 recommendations to address security vulnerabilities, reduce costs, and enhance fault tolerance. In instances of detected faults, incidents, or anomalies, the platform can trigger automated remediation actions as defined in pre-configured settings.

Site24x7 pros

  • Site24x7 provides instant alerts for performance issues and downtime, with flexible alert channels.

  • Its user-friendly interface and intuitive dashboards cater to a broad range of users.

  • Offers competitive and reasonable pricing compared to alternatives.

  • Conducts website monitoring across global locations, ensuring consistent user experiences worldwide.

Site 24x7 cons

  • Its features, integrations, and customization fall short compared to rivals.

9. Opsview


Opsview facilitates enhanced visibility into your Google Cloud Platform operations by presenting a consolidated perspective on the operational efficiency and status of your GCP infrastructure and applications. It offers "Opspacks" designed for monitoring various GCP services, including Google Compute Engine, Google Cloud Storage, Google Cloud Load Balancing, Google Cloud SQL, and more.

The integration with Google Compute Engine encompasses comprehensive metric monitoring, including metrics like CPU utilization, disk performance, and other relevant data points. Standard metrics are provided at a default 5-minute resolution without additional charges. For more detailed insights, you can opt for 1-minute resolution metrics, though this choice may involve usage costs.

Its monitoring capabilities for Google Cloud Storage encompass diverse checks such as bucket size, object count, request count, data transfer, errors, and latency statistics. Furthermore, Opsview's service for Google Cloud MySQl and PostgreSQL includes over several checks, assisting in identifying database-related issues like storage usage, I/O performance, throughput, and latency concerns.

Opsview pros

  • Offers live GCP monitoring with alerts.
  • Presents ready-made visualizations and dashboards.
  • Cost-effective plans tailored for small and medium-sized businesses.
  • Available as both SaaS and self-hosted options.

Opsview cons

  • It is less feature-rich for full-stack GCP monitoring than its competition.

10. ManageEngine Application's Manager


Applications Manager's monitoring solution for Google Cloud Platform aids in overseeing essential key performance indicators (KPIs) across various Google Cloud services. This supports the enhancement of performance and operational efficiency for crucial business applications functioning within your cloud environment. The solution furnishes comprehensive visibility into a wide range of GCP cloud metrics, covering aspects like resource utilization, cost analysis, request metrics, target statuses, and these insights are tailored to specific Google Cloud services and instances such as Google Compute Engine, Google Cloud SQL, and more.

Moreover, the platform includes a Root Cause Analysis feature that facilitates the identification of the origins of performance bottlenecks. This empowers proactive resolution before end users are impacted. Additionally, you can configure automated cloud actions to minimize manual interventions required for managing your GCP resources, triggered by specific predefined conditions.

Applications Manager pros

  • Budget-friendly pricing compared to alternatives.
  • Relatively simple installation and configuration for various environments, including GCP.
  • Centralized and comprehensive view of IT operations for effective monitoring and troubleshooting.
  • Deployment flexibility with both on-premises and cloud choices.

Applications Manager cons

  • User interface lacks intuitiveness.
  • Multi-cloud monitoring support is subpar.
  • Limited features for database monitoring.

Final thoughts

Before settling on an appropriate monitoring solution for your Google Cloud Platform environment, it's crucial to evaluate your specific monitoring requirements. Seek out a tool that provides thorough monitoring capabilities for the services you utilize, and assess its effectiveness in terms of alerting and notifications.

Factor in the cost aspect as well. Compare pricing structures and features to identify a tool that matches your budget constraints. Additionally, consulting reviews and seeking advice from fellow GCP users can help you gauge the tool's credibility, support quality, and overall reputation within the community.

Thanks for reading, and happy monitoring!

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