Cloud Management – 3+ Things You Might Not Have Thought About

May 21, 2013 at 5:02 am | Uncategorized | No comment

Today, cloud computing makes it possible to rethink the established partnership between business and IT - flashing time-to-market, economies of scale, on-demand infrastructure, etc. Cloud computing has become a viable alternative to the current bricks-and-mortar-based method of managing IT, often making it more productive and agile.

Don't underestimate, though, the constraints of cloud management. Traditional IT infrastructure management has been mostly focused on server management - buying servers, monitoring servers, troubleshooting servers. Cloud automation, on the other hand, has to bring together three technologies to work harmoniously in a highly structured, shared and global functioning environment.

1.Web-based systems and applications that require large volumes of data. This increasingly growing demand for data usages and analysis – “Big Data”– requires expanding storage capacity and accurate service delivery.

2.Physical and virtualized machines that host services and applications. These farms of servers need to be up and running and financially under control, involve more and more dedicated effort on innovation and scalability to align their capacity with effective consumption.

3.The underlying infrastructure which includes network equipment and all connectivity systems. There the crux of the matter is about allowing the bandwidth to the right data flux between data centers.

Together, these three dimensions design a single infrastructure where IT services can be seen and operated as global value chains. In this perspective, getting the right value is all about getting the right resource capacity, at the right time.

As in every industry, IT involves many parties working together to deliver products and services. Similarly to a physical supply chain where warehouse capacity has to be correctly sized; where machines and engines need to operate promptly and get the things done without any waste; where road, traffic, and all physical flows of products and goods are critical; IT has to manage closely the performance and capacity management of all resources involved in a cloud environment.

Traditional application, network and system operations have created dedicated expertise and opaque silos where everyone hopes that the job is being done right on the other side. Today‘s cloud-based solution force IT to think global and business-oriented.

Managing Cloud Capacity in 3D

How to anticipate on capacity needs and shut the light when resources are no longer needed? How to manage all three dimensions all together as in a global value chain? How to take the capacity management process to the next maturity level? Applying a dedicated approach to these things allows organizations to identify and plan the roadmap to optimize benefits and gain achievable savings.

Step 1: Establish an “as-is” infrastructure capacity assessment. This step enables visibility on utilization and saturation of the physical infrastructures, virtual and cloud (servers and network) for a given period of time. The key here is to start analyzing the right metrics, defining optimum specification limits and building scenarios.

Step 2: Implement a continuous performance and capacity monitoring perspective. This implies to permanently adapt IT equipment and implies to target a global infrastructure based on service understanding, application performance and service level agreements.

Step 3: Apply prediction modeling to align your network policies with future business requirements, and ensure that your business capacity needs meet the capacity planning investment. Mature capacity management is about predictability - knowing that the IT infrastructure can cope with the foreseen business activity is mission critical.

Capacity can’t be properly managed without a proper capacity management information system. Take advantage of performance and optimization tools, such as ORSYP's Sysload and Streamgroomer, to gain insight of your cloud environment. Alternatively, a server capacity assessment, based on technology and real metrics, will provide necessary insight without technology acquisition.

If the sky’s the limit, clouds will fly high if global performance and capacity are managed!

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