Posted by: Vala Shahabi | June 18, 2014

Business Continuity: How to Ensure Your Web Applications Never Go Down

The cloud is a very popular option for many enterprises, and most are diving into the cloud at some level. However, on-premises systems still dominate, and are still the preferred choice for most applications, says a recent survey of over 2,000 executives across the globe.

Conducted by 451 Research and released by Microsoft, the survey finds more than 45 percent of organizations consider themselves to be beyond the pilot phase, with 32 percent with a formal cloud computing plan as part of their overall IT and business strategy. At least 24 percent consider their enterprises to be “heavy” cloud users at this time.

That leaves a majority of enterprises on the fence to adopting the cloud. Many CIOs see their datacenter infrastructure as a sunk cost and want to get the ROI the sales rep in the shiny suit promised them.  They want to utilize the cloud more as 44 percent of executives admitted that there are a lot of off-budget purchases or implementations of cloud taking place within their enterprises. A lot of these purchases are going towards new applications but what does IT do with their huge datacenter investment? Here are some of the challenges IT faces today:

  • Large sunk cost in datacenter
  • Growing demand of application
  • Large delta between peak and off-peak (why build out for peak?)

The only way to keep your existing datacenter and extend out into the cloud is by taking a “hybrid cloud approach”. This gives IT the best of both worlds as they keep using their existing datacenters but no longer need to build out for the 8-10 hours of peak traffic per day. Instead, they can leverage technologies like Realtime’s Dynamic Cloud Manager (DCM) to manage their datacenter and extend out to the cloud on demand. DCM is the only real-time cloud manager that can manage both your on-premise and extend continuity into the cloud based on your business Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

The most common scenarios IT is faced with today are:

Scenario #1 – Datacenter (virtual servers) extend to Cloud. In this scenario DCM can be used to manage the VMs in your datacenter. As demand increases DCM will monitor KPIs and additional VMs will be created to manage demand. Once the datacenter capacity threshold is met, DCM will start creating additional VMs into the external cloud. DCM will continue to monitor both environments and properly allocate VMs as needed. The benefits of this scenario include:

  1. Lower costs by keeping datacenter for off peak capacity and using cloud elasticity during peak demand
  2. Automate the process for faster response and removing human error
  3. Disaster Recovery – should datacenter go down DCM can divert to the cloud and vice versa.
  4. Lower electricity cost in datacenter
  5. Share a pool of VM licenses among multiple business units to lower license costs

Scenario #2 – Datacenter (physical servers) extend to Cloud. In this scenario DCM can be used to monitor KPIs of the applications running in the datacenter. Once DCM determines the datacenter capacity threshold is met, DCM will start creating VMs in the external cloud environment. DCM will continue to monitor both environments and properly allocate VMs as needed. The benefits of this scenario include:

  1. Lower costs by keeping datacenter for off peak capacity and using cloud elasticity only when datacenter capacity threshold is met
  2. Automate the process for faster response and removing human error
  3. Disaster Recovery – should datacenter go down DCM can divert to the cloud.

In summary, the tools and technology exist to bridge the gap between your current infrastructure and leveraging the highly scalable and highly available low cost cloud. There is no reason to build your datacenter to handle infrequent peaks nor does it make sense for everyone to be deployed fully in the cloud. DCM is the perfect bridge to maximize your existing infrastructure while providing the benefits of the cloud. To learn more about DCM, feel free to reach out to me and my team of cloud experts here.

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