Virtualization: Everything Is Different; Nothing Has Changed
IT organizations are undergoing a significant transformation ever since virtualization has become a central part of IT operations. According to Gartner’s latest magic quadrant for server virtualization infrastructure, the majority of large enterprises are heavily virtualized. At the same time, the Gartner report notes, a growing percentage of these organizations have multiple virtualization technology silos, each managed with its own administrative solutions and skills, increasing operational cost and complexity.
Continuity Software’s CEO Gil Hecht referred to this reality in a recent interview with CIO Review, which nominated Continuity Software as one of the 20 Most Promising VMware Solutions for 2015.
“Although VMware is the dominant virtualization platform, most organizations possess a heterogeneous IT environment with multiple technologies in place,” said Hecht. In this highly volatile environment, IT teams have to ensure the stability and reliability of their critical business services. “Today, most organizations lack the tools to understand the potential business impact of configuration changes across IT domains.”
They also lack visibility to the cross-domain aspects of their infrastructure. As a result, they are exposed to hidden risks that cannot be identified by the standard monitoring tools delivered by single platform vendors.
In our most recent press release, Continuity Software’s CTO Doron Pinhas explained some of the underlying reasons for these challenges: “Virtual infrastructure has become a dominant part of the modern data center, and the complexity of these environments continues to increase. Facing a constant stream of configuration changes, human mistakes still proliferate, often resulting in painful and costly outages.”
These vulnerabilities are also reflected in the results of our service availability survey, with 47% of the respondents citing human errors as one of the most common causes for critical system outages.
Keeping up with best practices, especially while upgrading to new versions, is another significant obstacle, as Pinhas explains: “What was a recommended configuration setting in vSphere v5.5 may have adverse effects in v6.0. Yet these configurations are automatically carried forward during the VMware upgrade process, making a post-upgrade check against current best-practices especially important.”
As we can see, despite the rapid adoption of virtualization, not much has changed when it comes to the challenges facing IT teams and the most common reasons that infrastructure outages are still all too common.
To combat these challenges, IT and virtualization teams need better tools and strategies. According to our survey respondents, the most effective means for achieving IT operations excellence are better tools for measurement & analysis, enforcement of IT best practices, and detection of cross-domain IT configuration issues.
If you are looking for better tools to keep your virtualization infrastructure resilient, check out our hot-from-the-press announcement of a free new vSphere Resilience HealthCheck. This cloud-based service provides a quick and easy way for enterprise IT teams to verify vSphere configuration correctness and prevent availability issues before they impact the business.