Server virtualization is transforming data centers, increasing utilization of physical resources and introducing new architectures across all layers of infrastructure. IT staffs are able to manage larger environments and respond with more agility than with legacy physical environments. That being said, IT budgets are tight, and staffs are strained to keep up with growth. On Wikibon’s August 20, 2012 Peer Incite, the community discussed how CloudPhysics is looking to bring A Big Data Approach to Managing VMware Environments.
Since IT staffs are already stressed to the max, Wikibon always looks for things that IT can get rid of when deploying a new technology or service. CloudPhysics holds the potential of being able to reduce or eliminate proof-of-concepts and what if scenarios in physical environments. Users will be able to simulate changes before putting them into environments and carry out proof of concepts through modeling. The PoC modeling could even be better than existing processes; the aggregated community data examined can give a more accurate picture of what will happen when a solution is deployed in production than a test environment would. Nathan Smith, Senior Citrix Engineer with Centered Networks, says that CloudPhysics’ “cards” will display simple red/green indicators for VMware configurations, such as is HA setup properly, that even a non-technical person can understand.
By accessing a global pool of data and data scientists who are interpreting the data, CloudPhysics provides tools that help customers make better decisions. This will improve all steps in the operation of the overall virtualization environment from discussions with vendors through rapid deployment and performance optimization. While IT staffs will still need competent administrators, leveraging the crowd will give them access to an additional group of experts without having to grow the talent or experience in-house.
CloudPhysics is in the process of gathering anonymized data (see CloudPhysics.com for details on how to participate), and data sharing is not yet available. In addition to gathering configuration data, CloudPhysics is looking for the community to challenge its team with the biggest problems and puzzles faced in virtualization environments. Shared wisdom and a new generation of analytics creates the opportunity to simplify and streamline the operations of virtualization environments.
Action Item: With the availability of a giant repository of industry best practices, IT professionals can streamline and perhaps get rid of the proof of concept approach, particularly around performance, interoperability and HA. At a minimum, they will be able to shorten the time to and improve the success rate of future changes to the environment.