Thursday, December 31, 2015

End-of-Year Roundup

In 2016, virtualization in the cloud will mean most any application will run within a cloud environment — s step forward for many organizations. Just build and deploy in the native container (Java’s JVM, a dot-net infrastructure, PHP or other scripted language). Of course, Gartner predicts growth, some of which will come from calling traditional IT offerings "cloud" just by way of moving apps to a new data center. Nevertheless, migration of applications to cloud-based infrastructure will continue. While infrastructure is the usual focus, better services will be delivered via an application-oriented migration. Virtualization addresses infrastructure expansion, but being “cloud-ready” will mean expansion into app-level deployments that are agile (easy to maintain and upgrade), scalable (take advantage of on-demand capacity) and reliable (secure and crash-proof).

To leverage this coming groundswell, I advise revisiting applications, their integration, and the underlying data architectures. Perhaps these components need to be tweaked, or revised? I suggest considering new tools for deployment, monitoring, and management. Bluedog’s own infrastructure uses automated monitoring to alert our technologists to bottlenecks and highlight potential capacity issues — before an outage occurs. We use Nagios to monitoring infrastructure. It generates alerts when running out of disk, CPU, or memory, a reactive approach. Proactive monitoring generates alerts when a system is starting to experience symptoms that can lead to a degradation of performance or capacity, a preferable outcome. Tools such as the SWING Dashboard displays key performance indicators (KPI) daily, with a user-focused, visually appealing display.

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