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Correlsense: Improve Service in 2011 by Managing 'Virtually' Every Transaction

What do Virtualization and Cloud executives think about 2011?  Find out in this VMblog.com series exclusive.

Contributed Article By Byrne Chapman, Correlsense

Improve Service in 2011 by Managing 'Virtually' Every Transaction

In the coming year, IT organizations will continue to face the challenge of reducing spending while concurrently improving the availability, performance and functionality of business transactions.  Companies continue to implement virtualization to meet changing business requirements while improving service and reducing costs.  IT managers must instill and communicate a balanced vision that brings additional focus to the service provided for business transactions as computing resources are virtualized.  This focus will ensure improved service levels for business transactions with lower costs.

Transaction management monitors the reliability and performance of business transactions.  This differs greatly from traditional IT reporting in that the emphasis is on complete business transactions, rather than individual hardware or software components.    Transaction management provides a reporting solution that focuses on the level of service being delivered to business users and offers an opportunity to bring transparency to IT costs while improving the level of service delivered to business users.   

Transaction management differs from the historical method of IT reporting and management as it focuses on the business-oriented view of the user's interaction with IT systems rather than the individual technical components.  Continued migration to transaction management in the coming year will offer a solid road map for data center managers to deliver exceptional service to the business. This road map includes: capacity planning, service level agreements (SLAs), performance management, problem management, change management and charge backs.

Virtualization offers practical solutions for improving the service of business transactions while reducing associated costs.   However, its implementation adds a new level of complexity to the architecture of data center services and creates communication challenges as it relates to capacity, performance and availability statistics.  While the complexity of the IT infrastructure increases, there are a number of benefits that may be derived from the implementation of virtual solutions.

Processor utilization can be safely increased with the ability to dynamically move transaction workloads between virtual servers, allowing the company to reduce capital and operational expenses.  In situations where physical processors are underutilized, dynamic transaction management will alert IT managers of this, allowing them to use existing computing resources effective and reduce the number of physical servers, save floor space and reduce cooling and electrical costs.

Additionally, transaction management assists in dynamic capacity management providing flexibility in managing an environment where workloads change frequently.  The virtual environment offers opportunities to add and remove processors to meet changing workload trends. Dynamic capacity management can also be used to introduce new processors into an environment or remove aging processors without impacting the availability of business systems.

Disaster recovery scenarios also are positively impacted by the ability to dynamically manage transactions flows and target where transactions are executing.  Virtual server and storage technology can also greatly enhance disaster recovery times. Virtual storage solutions provide the flexibility of defining optimally sized physical storage volumes to reduce overall capital expenditures and improve the costs associated with storage solutions.

While the benefits of virtual solutions are many, they do increase the complexity inside the data center.  IT staff must carefully plan for the capacity and performance of virtual resources as well as the traditional physical computing environment.  A commitment to transaction management in the coming year will be critical to reduce the risks from the increased complexity of virtual solutions.  Implementation of transaction management will lay the foundation for business oriented performance and availability monitoring and charge back processes in the virtual environments.  Transaction monitoring will also ensure that business processes are successfully serviced to meet the SLAs promised to business users.

A commitment to the virtualization of processor and storage resources can reduce the total cost of business transactions while delivering improved service. Focusing on transaction management will highlight the importance of delivering quality, cost effective solutions to business users while providing accurate views of the service delivered by IT systems. 

About the Author

Byrne Chapman has spent most of his professional career as an IT executive in the insurance industry. He is a technology consultant for Correlsense, which offers SharePath, software for managing business transactions throughout the data center.

Published Friday, December 03, 2010 5:24 AM by David Marshall
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