The number of applications requiring high availability (HA) for business continuity and Tier 0 levels of performance is growing. For IT professionals, delivering on these demanding service level agreements (SLAs) is no easy task as IT environments grow more complex than ever before.
A diverse range of physical infrastructures comprises data centers today. For instance, solid-state drive (SSD) and hard-disk drive (HDD) storage media coexist, as do block, file and object storage access protocols. Meanwhile, bare metal machines coexist not only with virtual machines, but also increasingly with containers. Furthermore, the modern IT environment is no longer confined to the walls of the data center, with the advent of infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and software-as-a-service (SaaS) cloud-based delivery models.
This heterogeneity is necessary to meet varying SLAs around application availability, performance and cost. If not managed correctly, though, it results in disparate silos of resources. This limits cross-department collaboration and inhibits the ability for the enterprise to obtain a complete picture of their data. At the same time, it creates a management nightmare for IT professionals to deal with, especially when it comes to storage, as applications must access the data that they need quickly, regardless of location. Thus, it impedes IT’s ability to deliver the levels of agility that the modern business environment requires.
To resolve this complexity, storage planners should consider a software-defined approach that virtualizes applications from their underlying infrastructure. Specifically, such an approach can facilitate consistent availability, more optimized performance, and better orchestration.
- Decoupling applications from infrastructure creates the opportunity to standardize high availability services, such as failover, regardless of where and how that application is hosted.
- It also creates the opportunity to pool storage resources, whether shared or direct-attached, and to apply those resources more dynamically based on application SLAs. This improves resource utilization, and as a result helps to ensure that applications have the levels of storage capacity and performance that they require. It also enables IT to more flexibly add SSDs to existing storage pools, potentially bypassing net new all-flash array purchases. This is a significant value-add in an era where IT must be able to integrate new technologies for competitive advantage, quickly and without impact to production environments.
- Finally, the software-abstracted approach helps manage applications in a more agile way. It enables data to be migrated more seamlessly and automatically across environments, without impacting the application.
Watch Storage Switzerland’s Lightboard Video with Veritas for further discussion on how to cultivate a universal storage fabric that more effectively meets modern application needs in the multi-vendor, multi-cloud world.