Virtualization Technology News and Information
3 Signs your Virtualization Strategy is Stuck in Neutral

Article Contributed by Robbie Wright, Senior Product Marketing Manager, CommVault

Before we know it, it will be time to head to San Francisco for VMworld to chat about all things virtualization. From the hybrid cloud to implementing a mobile data strategy, many topics and best practices will be discussed at the show.

However, many attendees will head west without first evaluating their current virtualization strategies - reducing the chances of walking away with many important takeaways. One roadblock that might be getting in the way? A virtualization strategy that is stuck in neutral. How do you know if you're company is at risk? Here are three signs to be on the lookout for:

Lack of clearly defined VM lifecycle policies

When the virtualization frenzy first began, it was easy to deploy virtual machines quickly to consolidate physical servers and virtualize applications, but this led to a new computing dilemma - sprawl. Virtual machine (VM) sprawl is a problem that is oftentimes ignored until someone takes a close look at the infrastructure and realizes host resources such as processing, memory and storage are being underutilized or wasted. Serious questions about the VM lifecycle arise - Why was this VM created? Is it still needed? Can it be deleted? Should it be archived? When should VM expiration or archiving take place? Will the world stop turning?!

From the start, implementing clear policies on VM provisioning, management and retirement can help an effective lifecycle management strategy succeed. Further, policies can help enable an end user (a developer, application owner or business manager) to have the power to create and retire these VMs themselves. In addition, modern data management technologies such as VM auto-detection, P2V conversion and VM archiving can automatically facilitate these policies without a lot of manual steps, freeing up both resources and time for admins and end users alike. With great power, comes great responsibility, and with great policies, comes the ability to take a virtualization strategy out of neutral, especially for those admins that may be a bit hesitant about retiring anything.

Misaligned protection processes for applications

Once an organization commits to a virtualization strategy, the goal is typically to aggressively virtualize applications to meet the business needs, and many are well on their way of achieving that. However, the chosen data protection platform must be prepared to handle the scale, integration, recovery and requirements to be successful, and most importantly - be flexible.

Traditional backup methods may work in some scenarios, but every business has its own needs for meeting RTO and RPO. Ensuring the right backup method aligns with the application's needs can help propel a virtualization strategy to meet even the strictest service level agreements.

Cloud-based disaster recovery as an afterthought

IT departments are turning to the cloud for another tier of infrastructure whether it be an archive or a mirror image of their production data center for business continuity. But many companies still don't have the budgets for disaster recovery, except for money set aside for most mission critical applications. By leveraging the perfect combination of hybrid and public clouds, businesses can not only enhance data availability for critical apps, but also implement DR in more efficient and cost effective ways.

The public cloud is evolving into the DR platform of choice - so it's wise to plan ahead for any situation by implementing modern data management technologies. But more on that topic to come later!

Overall, these three strategies can help take any virtualization plan out of neutral to improve business operations and pay off on the promise of cloud computing. A holistic data protection approach can ensure the most secure and efficient way to manage VMs, deliver on SLAs and cost-effectively leverage the public cloud for disaster recovery. Staying ahead of the game will only help in the long run, and ensuring a virtualization strategy aligns with a business' overall strategy will increase the chances of success.  Are there other factors in your infrastructure that can contribute to a successful virtualization strategy?


About the Author

Robbie Wright is Senior Product Marketing Manager for CommVault. In this role, Robbie focuses on Server Virtualization and Cloud solutions and is a veteran in the storage, virtualization, and cloud market for more than 10 years. With former roles at both Dell and Rackspace, he has extensive experience with VMware, Hyper-V, and OpenStack, and is a frequent contributor to many types of social media. Robbie holds an MBA from The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.

Published Thursday, May 29, 2014 6:45 AM by David Marshall
Filed under: ,
There are no comments for this post.
To post a comment, you must be a registered user. Registration is free and easy! Sign up now!
<May 2014>