Newvem nets $4M to scan Amazon’s cloud

Newvem, which is making a name for itself analyzing Amazon Web Services (s amzn) usage for customers, netted $4 million in Series A funding led by Greylock Partners with Index Ventures and Eric Schmidt’s Innovation Endeavors also participating.

Amazon first

For now, Newvem focuses on solely on AWS, the biggest of the public clouds. Over time, it will expand to monitor other public cloud infrastructure, Newvem CEO Zev Laderman said in an interview. “We want to go deep into Amazon and then broaden out,” Laderman siad.

Newvem is able to garner some important information — with the user’s permission — by examining the data Amazon’s API exposes. However, there are some things, such as EC2 memory usage, that is not very transparent and that’s a gap Newvem will use its funding to address.

“The picture we get from the data Amazon exports to its API is very useful and provides good visibility if we run the proper analytics and organize the data properly, but there’s a fair amount of information you cannot get from the API. We need to see the memory and OS type information that does not come from Amazon so we need to integrate with any monitoring system that has an agent,” said Ilan Naslavsky, founder and CTO of Tel Aviv-based Newvem.

Part of the funding will help the company move its services”up the stack” to gain more insight into what the customer is using and how the cloud is performing.

Laderman stresses that the goal of Newvem’s Cloud Radar and other tools is not so much to make sure companies get what they pay for from Amazon, but to ensure they are deploying their workloads securely and efficiently. Recent Newvem research, for example, showed an alarmingly large percentage of users leaving ports open in Amazon’s EC2 — a bad practice in terms of security.

Scanning AWS for security holes

In addition to the funding, Newvem is releasing an additional free SaaS service, to scan a user’s AWS infrastructure, trolling for critical ports, open security groups and open ports to the AWS cloud. The Newvem AWS Security Scan, the company said, will pinpoint breaches and recommend action.

And, the company will continue to gather information about cloud usage from its users and build a publicly available knowledge base on its web site. The plan is to continue to offer free service for several months before devising its paid business model, Laderman said.

It’s clear that cloud users want better insights as to what’s actually running in their public cloud instances, so the demand is there. But Newvem will not have this piece of the market to itself. Peering inside AWS to help users get a better handle on their cloud usage is becoming potentially big business for other startups too, including Cloudability,  Cloudyn and UptimeCloud.