Siloing stifles data center growth

An IT industry analyst article published by SearchDataCenter.

It’s time to knock down those silos, one by one. IT is transforming from a siloed set of reactive cost centers into a service provider with a focus on helping the business compete.

In the old days of IT, admins built clear silos of domain expertise; IT infrastructure was complicated. Server admins monitored compute hosts, storage admins wrangled disks and network people untangled wires. Implementing parallel domains seemed like the best way to optimize IT. The theory was that you could run IT as efficiently as possible, allowing experts to learn specialized skills, deploy domain-specific hardware and manage complex resources.

Except that dealing with multiple IT domains was never optimal for anyone in the data center. When IT is organized into silos, anytime there is problem — troubleshooting application performance, competing for rack space, or allocating a limited budget — the resulting bickering, finger-pointing and political posturing wastes valuable time and money. And heterogeneous infrastructure is not very interoperable, despite standardized protocols and thorough vendor validation testing.

Navigating a byzantine organization just to try out new things can stifle business creativity and innovation, but things are beginning to change. There is a massive shift in IT organization and staffing…

…(read the complete as-published article there)

Managing It All By Reflex – Virtualization Performance, Configuration, AND Security

(Excerpt from original post on the Taneja Group News Blog)

We all want to virtualize deeper into our application portfolios, but those darn mission-critical applications are tough to break loose from their rock-solid physical infrastructure. One big problem is that we have long-established, mature and trusted IT management in the physical realm that’s hard to simply replicate in the virtual world. Who knew that being so good at something would become such a problem?

As we journey down the virtualization management maturity path, it seems the common approach is to just continue layering on increments of management capability. It’s as if the virtual server farm beast is alive and growing organically. There are at least two things with many-layered beasts that we have a right to be suspicious about – increasing complexity and spiraling management cost.  

Reflex Systems is claiming that they have a better way with their fully integrated virtualization management approach. It may be an uphill battle to convince skeptics that they can sit in the middle of all management and replace a raft of proven best-of-breed solutions, but Reflex does have a refreshing architecture intentionally designed from the ground up to support integrated management. Their single “platform” solution is designed to support the total management lifecycle of performance monitoring, capacity planning, provisioning and configuration management, and policy-based security all extensible with open API’s both in and out.   

A question I often hear from IT virtualizers is “what is a private cloud compared to what I’m already doing, really?”  I think Reflex provides a big clue here in their integration and implicit optimization across multiple IT management disciplines.

…(read the full post)