Virtualization Is Happening Today




                                              MAY / JUNE 2009 / VOLUME: 2 ISSUE 3


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EDITORIAL



    When the going gets tough,
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STRATEGY




    INSIDE
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STRATEGY




                                ture configuration changes that tend to obfuscate       environments now bring...
FEATURE




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FEATURE




                                 mation. The data virtualization layer enabled             These data virtuali...
FEATURE




                                 er management operational BI applications,          Furthermore, analysts and...
VIRTUALIZATION 2.0




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  1. 1. Virtualization Is Happening Today MAY / JUNE 2009 / VOLUME: 2 ISSUE 3 Making the Case for Data Virtualization Robert Eve 3 Virtualization Experts in High Demand DAVID LINTHICUM 5 Taming the Butterfly Effect in Virtualized Environments HEZI MORE 14 Solving the Virtual Machine Backup Conundrum LAURA BUCKLEY 18 Enterprise Data Storage DAVE PISTACCHIO 20 Memory: The Real Data Center Bottleneck CLIVE COOK 24 Server Virtualization Technology Makes Its Way into Storage Systems LEE CASWELL
  2. 2. EDITORIAL When the going gets tough, PRESIDENT & CEO Fuat Kircaali fuat@sys-con.com Senior VP, Editorial & Events the tough get LEAN. Jeremy Geelan jeremy@sys-con.com EDITORIAL Executive Editor Nancy Valentine nancy@sys-con.com Virtualization Experts in High Demand Be prepared to pay Research Editor Bahadir Karuv, PhD bahadir@sys-con.com ADVERTISING Senior VP, Sales & Marketing Carmen Gonzalez carmen@sys-con.com BY DAVID LINTHICUM Advertising Sales Director Megan Mussa megan@sys-con.com Associate Sales Manager Corinna Melcon corinna@sys-con.com EVENTS T Events Manager Sharmonique Shade sharmonique@sys-con.com hose with virtualiza- reason. They’re either too slow to promote or PRODUCTION tion skills are in high don’t provide competitive wages. Lead Designer demand right now. The core issue around virtualization is that Abraham Addo abraham@sys-con.com That makes them virtualization goes well beyond simple net- Associate Art Directors Louis F. Cuffari louis@sys-con.com just as difficult to retain as work and system administration. Many seek Tami Beatty tami@sys-con.com it is to find and hire them. traditional “network administration” types, and CUSTOMER RELATIONS Indeed, as virtualization they quickly find that the skills go far above the Circulation Service Coordinator becomes more important network. There are many abstraction layers to Edna Earle Russell edna@sys-con.com to enterprise IT, those who consider, and virtualization is much more com- understand VMware, and plex than traditional systems administration. To SYS-CON.COM other virtualization technology, and understand this end, virtualization skills require that the ideal Web Designers Richard Walter richard@sys-con.com virtualization in general are commanding top sala- candidate be a jack-of-all-trades and a master of ries and they are often recruited away from current VMware. ACCOUNTING employers. As the use of virtualization rapidly expands, Financial Analyst Personally, I’m getting a few calls a week from the need for talent will expand with it. At this Joan LaRose joan@sys-con.com headhunters looking for design and operational point there are more positions chasing too few Accounts Payable virtualization talent, even in the downturn when candidates, and that could mean salaries go up Harness the power of Lean IT to drive business value, reduce Betty White betty@sys-con.com data centers are shrinking. At the heart of the is- quickly for the core talent, or they settle for those waste and maximize productivity. SUBSCRIPTIONS sue is that virtualization now touches all parts of who don’t fully fit the bill. Either way, it’s going to the data center, the use cases are becoming more cost more to maintain virtualization in 2009 and Virtualization management solutions from CA help increase the value IT delivers to the subscribe@sys-con.com complex, and the operational value is mission- 2010. For additional business by enabling reliable, high-quality services, improving operational efficiency and Call 1-888-303-5282 For subscriptions and requests for bulk orders, please send critical. information agility, and reducing costs through automation and integration with CA enterprise managers. your letters to Subscription Department $49/yr (6 issues) In responding to this need, many organiza- About the Author please visit tions have created virtualization centers of David S. Linthicum, Editor-in-Chief of SYS-CON’s Virtualization ca.com/virtual. CA virtual management solutions can help you: excellence with the hopes of creating new talent Journal, is an internationally known cloud computing and service- EDITORIAL OFFICES SYS-CON MEDIA and becoming more attractive to virtualization oriented architecture (SOA) expert. He is a sought-after consultant, • Centralize virtual and physical management and provisioning 577 Chestnut Ridge Rd., experts. Typically this means an investment that speaker, and writer, and formed Blue Mountain Labs, a leading Woodcliff Lake, NJ 07677 Telephone: 201 802-3000 Fax: 201 782-9601 • Leverage repeatable and extensible process automation Virtualization Journal (ISSN #1549-1331) the IT leaders hope comes back to them quickly cloud computing advisory, validation, and consulting organization. is published bimonthly (6 times a year) as virtualization becomes a larger part of the in- In his career, Linthicum has formed or enhanced many of the ideas • Audit system and application configurations in minutes not hours or days Postmaster: send address changes to: Virtualization Journal frastructure, and the use of cloud computing and behind modern distributed computing including EAI, B2B Application SYS-CON MEDIA private clouds begins to become more pervasive. Integration, and SOA, approaches and technologies in wide use • Create a self-service provisioning model 577 Chestnut Ridge Rd., Woodcliff Lake, NJ 07677 So, how can you attract new virtualization talent? today. For the last 10 years, he has focused on the technology and The trick is to understand first that you have to strategies around cloud computing, including working with several • Enhance agility with automated resource allocation based on business needs ©Copyright 2009 by SYS-CON Publications, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or pay for talent, and perhaps pay more than some cloud computing startups. His industry experience includes tenure mechanical, including photocopy or any information storage and retrieval system, without written permission. All brand of the existing players. Talk to recruiters and can- as CTO and CEO of several successful software and cloud computing and product names used on these pages are trade names, service marks or trademarks of their respective companies. didates to understand more about expectations. companies, and upper-level management positions in Fortune 500 Beyond that, plan on paying retention and sign- companies. In addition, he was an associate professor of computer FOR LIST RENTAL INFORMATION: Kevin Collopy: 845 731-2684 kevin.collopy@edithroman.com ing bonuses, and being creative around work/life science for eight years, and continues to lecture at major techni- Frank Cipolla: 845 731-3832 frank.cipolla@epostdirect.com issues, such as allowing a liberal telecommuting cal colleges and universities, including University of Virginia and policy and a relaxed dress code. Arizona State University. He keynotes at many leading technology REPRINTS So, if you’re a virtualization expert, how can conferences, and has several well-read columns and blogs. Dave has For promotional reprints, contact reprint coordinator Megan Mussa megan@sys-con.com you find the best places to work? Look for orga- authored 10 books, including the ground-breaking “Enterprise Ap- nizations that invest in your talent as well as IT. plication Integration” and “B2B Application Integration.” You can SYS-CON Publications, Inc., reserves the right to revise, Copyright © 2009 CA. All rights reserved. MP338650409 republish and authorize its readers to use the articles Those organizations that seem to have a lot of reach Dave at david@bluemountainlabs.com. submitted for publication. turnover typically have that turnover for a good david@linthicumgroup.com 2 MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 http://virtualization.sys-con.com http://virtualization.sys-con.com MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 3
  3. 3. STRATEGY INSIDE Taming the Butterfly Effect in 3 FROM THE EDITOR Virtualization Experts in Virtualized Environments High Demand How small inconsequential events can have DAVID LINTHICUM radical consequences down the line BY HEZI MOORE STRATEGY 5 I Taming the Butterfly Effect n 1969 Edward Lorenz, the famed meteorolo- senior analyst at Enterprise Management Associ- in Virtualized Environments gist and Chaos Theory proponent, introduced ates, coined the phrase “Fog of Virtualization” to HEZI MOORE the concept now known as the “Butterfly Effect” describe this new challenge. Since one cannot when he posed the famous question: “Does the manage or control what they can’t see, virtual flap of a butterfly’s wings in Brazil set off a tornado data center administrators are experiencing man- in Texas?” The Butterfly Effect theory describes the agement and policy enforcement limitations. FEATURE phenomenon of how small variations in a dynamic Visibility into both the virtual and physical 8 Making the Case for Data system can subsequently cause larger and more complex variations over the long term. infrastructure is becoming a crucial operating requirement. Administrators need a visual repre- Virtualization: Hard Metrics Today’s modern virtualized data center repre- sentation of their virtual environment to under- for Hard Times sents a new kind of dynamic system. Just as the stand the entire virtual network, track changes, Brazilian butterfly may set off a tornado a world and manage both their physical and virtual ROBERT EVE away, any change to the virtualized objects that infrastructure. Virtualization creates an invisible are the components of the virtual infrastructure line where servers and applications are easily can have severe and unintended consequences to moved and managed by multiple cross-functional VIRTUALIZATION 2.0 virtualized systems, networks, and data centers. organizational departments. Not only can serv- 14 Solving the Virtual Machine As virtualization technologies are deployed in live production environments, the potential for small ers, storage, and networks can be dynamically managed as a single pool of resources but servers, Backup Conundrum changes at the virtual layer disrupting the virtual switches, and networks can be created at the click LAURA BUCKLEY and physical network resources are becoming a real of a mouse with applications moving seamlessly concern. from one physical server to another. Consequently such a dynamic environment Seeing Through the Fog of can create issues uncommon in traditional DATA STORAGE 18 Enterprise Data Storage Virtualization The evolution of IT has been marked by several physical environments. Policies can be defined to dynamically move virtual machines based on DAVE PISTACCHIO distinct cycles. The adoption of virtualization in resource utilization or for disaster recovery and the data center is proving to be the next major business continuity. This automated mobility paradigm shift as was the change from main- means that administrators only know the current frame to client/server computing in years past. location of a virtual machine. Of course, with vir- NETWORK RESOURCES 20 Memory: The Real Data The next advance in the corporate infrastructure is now underway with the broad embrace of cloud tualization it’s fast and easy to deploy new servers. Perhaps a little too easy, as administrators Center Bottleneck computing, marked by the use of Software-as-a- struggle to control this new breed of 10 CLIVE COOK Service (SaaS). Cloud computing will become in- creasingly more prevalent once more servers and virtual server sprawl which adds another layer of complex- desktops are virtualized and migrating servers in ity and decreases the the cloud is as easy as dragging and dropping an cost savings to the AGGREGATION icon onto a remote server. organization. Virtual 24 Server Virtualization Technology Clearly, the virtual data center is quickly be- coming a reality and organizations that deploy environments are subject to an ex- Makes Its Way into Storage Systems virtualization are now coming to grips with a treme number LEE CASWELL new set of management challenges. Jim Frey, a of infrastruc- 4 MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 http://virtualization.sys-con.com http://virtualization.sys-con.com MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 5
  4. 4. STRATEGY ture configuration changes that tend to obfuscate environments now bring potential risk to enter- ers with features such as Distributed Resource ture Management no longer fear the winds of the data center as a whole – understanding how prise operations. Complex virtual environments Scheduling (DRS) and High Availability (HA) that change or Lorenz’s Butterfly Effect. Leveraging components are connected, and the consequenc- coupled with high end-user expectations, the are based on VMotion’s enabling technology. the Virtual Infrastructure Management tools, IT es of changes, can mean the difference between pressures to meet SLA agreements, and a focus DRS continuously optimizes resource alloca- departments can evolve and add the following success and failure. on cost reduction have significantly increased the tions based on defined rules and resource utili- capabilities: To maintain proper and secure configuration probability of disruption. zation. The changes to resource allocation can in a virtual environment, organizations must For example, virtual machines are typically be automatically executed by performing live • Gain visibility and assert control across virtual be able to track all infrastructure changes in connected to shared networks. Any virtual ma- migration of virtual machines through VMotion. environments. Since you can’t control what real-time to maintain an accurate model of the chine or group of virtual machines connected The frequency of moves depends on the aggres- you can’t see, visibility is key in managing and virtual environment. If Murphy were a data center to a common network can communicate across siveness of the policy chosen. A more aggressive monitoring the virtual infrastructure. Admin- administrator, his law might read: “A misconfig- those network links and can, therefore, still be DRS implementation would set off a flurry of istrators need a visual representation of their ured device possesses a risk equal to one that’s the target of network attacks from other virtual VM migrations on a frequent basis. Like Lorenz’s virtual environment to understand the entire unpatched for known vulnerabilities.” Virtualiza- machines on the network. As a result, adminis- Brazilian Butterfly, frequent changes that DRS virtual network, track changes, and address vir- tion makes configuration of virtual infrastructure trators apply network best practices to harden imposed on the infrastructure can have serious tualization challenges that have management a point-and-click operation, opening the doors the networks and isolate them to minimize the consequences. If the butterfly hadn’t flapped its implications. for simple human error. risks of data leaks from one virtual machine wings and DRS stopped migrating VMs at such • Track all infrastructure changes in real-time zone to the next across the network. The com- a high frequency, the trajectory of the system and maintain an accurate model of the virtual The Unintended Consequences of mon approach used in implementing segmen- might have been vastly different. While neither environment. With Virtual Infrastructure Man- Interdependent Systems tation is the use of virtual local area networks the butterfly nor the DRS activities directly agement tools at their disposal, administrators Large virtual infrastructures have grown so (VLANs). This approach is based on VLANs caused the tornado, the flap of its wings and the can track changes to assets and alert stakehold- complex and interdependent that the Butterfly providing almost all of the security benefits initial configuration of the virtual environment ers when critical assets are modified. In addi- Effect is emerging as a real threat. There are a inherent in implementing physically separate are an essential part of the initial conditions that tion, the administrator has access to historical number of dynamic forces at work in virtual networks. Two virtual machines in the network presage disaster. Recurrence – the approximate changes to identify unauthorized configuration systems, and changes to one part of the infra- are unable to transmit packets back and forth return of a system toward its initial conditions changes, configuration errors, and enforce structure can have far-reaching consequences. unless they’re part of the same VLAN. Proper – together with sensitive dependence on initial policies across the entire virtual infrastructure. The downside of these complex interdependen- segmentation of the virtual data center using conditions are the two primary ingredients for Each time a change is detected, the change cies is that human mistakes, even small errors VLANs requires careful planning of both the chaotic motion. and all relevant details (who, when, why) are in configuration, can manifest themselves as physical and the virtual network components. The Butterfly Effect is a real phenomenon in recorded major problems down the road. These forces VLANs segmentation increases the network’s virtual data centers that can increase risk, drive • Monitoring and managing virtual performance conspire to put pressure on both the system complexity and creates environment depen- up costs, negatively affect availability, and frac- enables organizations to increase business and administrators, increasing the probability dencies between the physical and the virtual ture IT’s credibility. Several core problems faced efficiency and assure business continuity in of mistakes and making their impact more far- network. by nearly every large IT organization have magni- the virtual data center. The ability to detect reaching and costly. IT specialists attempting to Administrators require vigilant monitoring fied these burdens. Information about virtual network bottlenecks inside the virtual infra- configure, change, release, and support critical and tight coordination of configuration changes configuration interdependencies is poorly under- structure, identify over-utilized VMs, improve applications can find themselves facing a daunt- across both the virtual and physical network. A stood, tracking it is inefficient, and mapping out the performance of critical applications, and ing reality. simple change to the VLAN configuration of the a dynamic virtual infrastructure is a complicated avoid network outages will allow administra- The Butterfly Effect in the virtual data center is virtual infrastructure can impact the security and time-consuming endeavor. But organizations tors to improve the delivery of these critical exacerbated by a complex infrastructure designed level and the performance of VMs that will fail can mitigate these effects by automating their applications, quickly troubleshoot issues, and to support multi-tiered networks, interdependen- to perform the business task it was designed to virtual infrastructure management. optimize their virtual infrastructure. cies between different layers of infrastructure, do. Small variations of the initial configuration of IT organizations need a new breed of manage- fewer IT resources, and more applications that the virtual network’s VLANs structure or VLANs ment tools that understands and takes advan- From a philosophical standpoint, the Butterfly require changes and demands to support new configuration changes to the physical network tage of virtualization’s unique requirements and Effect provides a framework for understanding initiatives like service-oriented IT and distrib- can produce large variations in the long-term capabilities. Virtual Infrastructure Management how seemingly small and inconsequential events uted architectures. Administrators are struggling behavior of the virtual and the physical environ- is now being embraced by organizations around can have radical consequences down the line. to manage the Butterfly Effect while trying to ment. Just as Lorenz’s Brazilian Butterfly has the world as a way of achieving large increases in This theory can be applied to the virtual data cen- meet the conflicting challenges of providing the the potential to set off a tornado thousand of availability and reliability for relatively modest ter, a system that has become exponentially more continuous availability of critical applications. miles away, frequent changes that network VLAN investments in services and tools. Organizations complex and unpredictable as it grows in scope But achieving continuous availability in complex configuration impose on the infrastructure can implementing tools like Reflex’ management and gets beyond our direct control. While such virtual environments is no small task. have serious consequences and negatively impact solution for virtual environment have achieved systems will always possess a measure of uncer- Virtual environments are subject to an extreme the security and performance of the entire data these goals by reducing the time required to tainty, we will require new tools and diagnostics number of infrastructure configuration changes center. resolve problems, improving capacity planning, that let us look deep into the black box. that increase the complexity in the IT enterprise. Another example is VMotion migration tech- monitoring configuration changes, increasing Knowing how network resources are connected, nology, which adds a much needed dynamism to business resiliency, and better managing their About the Author and the consequences of change, can make all the virtual environments. Virtual machines and their virtual data center assets. Those enterprises that Hezi Moore is the CTO and co-founder of Reflex Systems, a pro- difference. Seemingly small changes to the virtual applications are moved between physical serv- have made the leap to effective Virtual Infrastruc- vider of virtualization management solutions based in Atlanta, GA 6 MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 http://virtualization.sys-con.com http://virtualization.sys-con.com MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 7
  5. 5. FEATURE Data Virtualization Data virtualization is used to integrate data from multiple disparate sources – anywhere Making the Case for Data across the extended enterprise – for consumption by front-end business solutions, including por- tals, mashups, reports, applications, and search Virtualization: Hard Metrics engines. (See Figure 1.) As middleware technology, data virtualization or virtual data federation has advanced beyond for Hard Times high-performance query or enterprise informa- tion integration (EII). As IT architecture, data virtualization is implemented as a virtualized Increased risk and an opportunity data layer, an information grid, an information Source: Composite Software, Inc. for better security fabric, or a data services layer in Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) environments. It can also be Figure 1 Data virtualization at a glance deployed on a project basis, for business intel- available to revenue-producing and customer- ligence (BI) and reporting, portals and mashups, facing staff for better sales-related business deci- and industry-focused single views. sions. Hard metrics include: BY ROBERT EVE • The number of decisions within the project’s Data Virtualization’s Five Value Points scope; and The many ways data virtualization delivers • The revenue-enhancing value of improving value to business functions and IT operations can each decision based on the availability of more be categorized as: complete data. • Sales Growth • Risk Reduction An energy provider used data federation to • Time Savings increase oil production from its 10,000 wells. • Technology Savings The data included complex surface, subsurface, • Staff Savings and business data in high volumes from many disparate sources. The data virtualization solution Converting these to hard metrics requires federated actionable information to automate an understanding of the relationships between maintenance and repair decisions made through- specific data virtualization capabilities and the out the day, while relieving key resources for other IT and business value they deliver. Value calcula- value-adding tasks. This increased both staff and tions are made using one or more forms of re- repair rig productivity, which were key factors in turn-on-investment (ROI) calculators. Examples the 10% increase achieved in well revenue perfor- of the five value points and their metrics along mance and efficiency. with actual customer case studies are provided below. Fresher Data Data virtualization’s on-demand data access Sales Growth and delivery capabilities reach difficult-to-access As an important indicator of an enterprise’s data and deliver it to consuming applications in success (or, in the public sector, as an indica- near-real-time. Fresher data means more timely A chieving compelling value from infor- measured in U.S. dollars, then rise by 9% in 2010.” tor of service growth or mission effectiveness), and accurate decision-making, often yielding mation technology is critical because With smaller budgets, IT must validate purchases sales growth results from business strategies sales growth. The hard metrics include: IT is typically an enterprise or govern- by correlating tangible business and IT returns such as improved offerings, better customer • The number of decisions in the project’s scope; ment agency’s largest capital expense. that align with corporate strategic objectives. This support, and faster market response. Data and Increasing business complexities and technology validation should come early in the acquisition virtualization supports these strategies by pro- • The revenue-enhancing value of improving choices create greater demands for justification process as well as after the implementation to viding data federation, on-demand data access each decision based on the availability of more when making IT investments demonstrate actual value and justify expanded and delivery, and automated data discovery timely data. Cambridge, MA-based analyst firm Forrester adoption. and modeling. Research recently reported that, “Business and Evaluating data virtualization first requires A leading marketing information company government’s purchases of computer and com- understanding how it specifically delivers value. More Complete Data used on-demand data access and delivery to munication equipment, software, IT consulting, This understanding can then be used to calculate Data federation capabilities enable the integra- grow sales by providing its large consumer goods and integration services and IT outsourcing will value and provide the hard metrics required for tion of disparate data on-the-fly without physical clients with more timely access to its huge col- decline by 3% on a global basis in 2009 when hard economic times. data consolidation, making more complete data lection of consumer trends and demand infor- 8 MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 http://virtualization.sys-con.com http://virtualization.sys-con.com MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 9
  6. 6. FEATURE mation. The data virtualization layer enabled These data virtualization capabilities and IT the data needed while reducing the latency multiple data consumers including Microsoft simplified and rapid development of the real-time benefits are similar to those driving sales growth. between business event and response. So IT SharePoint, Business Objects Business Intel- queries required by the customers’ self-service However, for risk reduction, the business benefit is under constant pressure to provide these ligence, Tibco Spotfire, Microsoft Excel, and reporting tools. This capability was the key factor is better risk visibility and faster problem reme- new systems and their associated information various Web portals. This resulted in a 90% behind a 2% increase in revenue. diation. In both cases, quicker time-to-solution more quickly. Strategies for saving develop- reduction in the time required to deploy new helps get new or improved applications online ment and deployment time as well as decreas- information sets. Quicker Time-to-Solution faster. However, in the case of risk reduction, ing data latency are crucial. Data virtualiza- Data virtualization’s automated data discovery these might be applications for risk management tion supports these strategies by providing High-Performance Data Delivery and rapid modeling capabilities reduce the time or compliance reporting, rather than sales or a data services library; installation wizard, Data virtualization’s query optimization typically wasted on searching for relationships customer management. manager and clustering; and query optimiza- and caching capabilities help eliminate data among data tables. These capabilities automate tion capabilities. latencies, speeding the delivery of critical many of the detailed modeling and validation More Complete Data information to users and applications, thereby activities. With quicker time-to-solution, new Data federation provides more complete Less New Code, Greater Reuse shortening the time between business events sales-impacting applications and their associated data to risk and compliance management staff, The data services library holds complete collec- and response. revenues are available sooner. The hard metrics thereby improving data visibility and reducing tions of reusable views and data services. By using A North American telecom chip maker tar- include: overall risk. The hard metrics include: these existing objects, the need for new coding geted faster responses to customer requests. • The number of months the project can be • The number of risk decisions in the project’s efforts is lessened, permitting greater reuse across To do this, its sales force management analyt- delivered earlier; and scope; and multiple applications. This saves project develop- ics required up-to-the-minute data from the • The revenue-enhancing value associated with • The risk reduction value of improving each de- ment time for both new applications and existing packaged Salesforce.com CRM application as each month where value was accelerated. cision based on the availability more complete ones when changes are needed. The hard metrics well as other systems. The manufacturer used data. include: data virtualization to optimize query per- An investment bank used data discovery and • The number of views or services planned; formance, ultimately cutting average report modeling to increase revenues by improving its A global pharmaceutical company used data • The savings per view or service; and runtimes from four minutes to 30 seconds or trade order management, debt/equity market federation to shorten lengthy R&D cycles and re- • The percentage reuse factor for a specified time less. research, and risk management applications. duce the risk of new product delays. Its Research frame. The abstracted data layer in the SOA environ- Scientists’ Workbench solution combined dis- Technology Savings ment enabled rapid modeling and complex query parate structured and semi-structured research A major investment bank wanted to build Just as storage, server, and applications’ creation that was shareable across the bank. The data from across the enterprise. Armed with more new applications faster, but it couldn’t be- virtualization have demonstrated huge tech- resulting 60% reduction in integration design and complete information, researchers were able to cause key reference data, such as counter-par- nology savings, data virtualization has proven development time on revenue-enabling applica- resolve problems faster, resulting in 60% fewer ty accounts, was duplicated across multiple to provide similar savings by requiring fewer tions and portals contributed to a 2% revenue new product delays. applications. Other than slowing develop- physical data repositories along with the increase at the bank. ment, this proliferation contradicted good systems required to operate and manage them. Fresher Data and Quicker Time-to-Solution banking practices and data governance. The Many users find that these technology infra- Risk Reduction Data virtualization’s on-demand data access bank shaved 25% off its average development structure savings alone justify the investment. Risk reduction has become increasingly and delivery capabilities improve the timeliness time by creating a shared data services library This is frequently a natural place to start a data important as a result of greater complexity and of data so risk issues can be remediated faster. to house Web Services for sharing counter- virtualization deployment. regulation. Becoming more agile in response to Data virtualization’s automated discovery and party master reference data. risk, improving predictability in light of risk, and modeling accelerates new risk management and Fewer Physical Repositories, Lower Hardware, ensuring compliance with changing regulations compliance reporting application development, Easy Installation & Reliable Operation Software, & Facilities Costs and reporting mandates are a few of the strategies thereby delivering their associated risk-reducing Various installation wizards along with man- Data virtualization doesn’t require replica- to reduce risk. Data virtualization supports these benefits sooner. ager and clustering capabilities accelerate and tion in intermediate physical data repositories. strategies through its data federation, on-demand automate the installation and runtime of data Fewer physical data marts and operational data access and delivery, and data discovery and Time Savings virtualization solutions. As a result, new solutions data stores mean less supporting hardware modeling capabilities. New information systems must deliver are deployed faster. The hard metrics include: and software. This, in turn, means less rack • The number of months a project can be deliv- space, electricity, air conditioning, manage- “Evaluating data virtualization ered earlier; and ment software, and other facilities’ costs. The • The assignable value associated with each hard metrics include: month the value was accelerated. • The number of servers reduced due to virtual first requires understanding how federation rather than physical consolidation; A leading life sciences R&D organization and needed to quickly prototype, develop, and de- • The assignable hardware, software and facili- it specifically delivers value.” ploy the new information solutions required ties cost associated with each server. to support strategic decisions by business executives. It used data virtualization to build A leading computer maker wanted to re- and deploy virtual data marts in support of duce the cost of its supply chain and custom- 10 MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 http://virtualization.sys-con.com http://virtualization.sys-con.com MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 11
  7. 7. FEATURE er management operational BI applications, Furthermore, analysts and data designers can which included more than 50 intermediate transfer models to application developers and data marts. Each mart required a server, operations teams to complete the process. resulting in lifecycle hardware infrastructure This encourages team collaboration and helps costs of $20,000 each. It used data virtualiza- reduce rework. The hard metrics include: tion to provide a virtual supply chain data • The number of hours saved; and hub that replaced the physical data marts. • The cost per hour. This resulted in $1 million in infrastructure cost savings. The same global money management firm cited above wanted to improve the collabora- Staff Savings tion of its 100 financial analysts. Many of its The cost of internal and outsourced staff is financial models relied on similar data and typically the largest IT expenditure. Substitut- data models, but technology hindered these ing automated tools for labor is one strategy analysts from effectively sharing their work. A for cutting staffing costs. Increasing existing common virtualization layer over the finan- staff productivity by improving SDLC process- cial research data warehouse provided the es is another. Simplifying the work to employ financial analysts with reusable data views lower-skilled (and therefore less costly) staff that could be shared for the first time. In is a third. Data virtualization supports these addition, IT provided a dedicated DBA and strategies by delivering a user-friendly GUI data architect who created the new views as development environment, along with auto- needed. The improved collaboration resulted mated data discovery and data services library in higher portfolio returns and a 150% ROI in capabilities. six months. Fewer Skills Required Metrics for Hard Times Data virtualization’s GUI development envi- By understanding the specific contributing ronment simplifies and automates the detailed value factors of data virtualization, C-level design and development work that would executives and IT managers can more easily otherwise require more technically capable staff. Enterprises find they spend less money calculate both the estimated and actual value of each data virtualization implementation Mark Your Calendar & Join SYS-CON Events’ on expensive consultants. Enterprises also find that they can redeploy their highly skilled staff under consideration, be it architecture or project. The resulting hard metrics that clearly 2009 Conferences & Expos to other more critical work. The hard metrics contribute to enterprise-wide goals arm bud- include: get decision makers with the data they need • The number of consulting staff hours being to make confident decisions in hard economic reduced; and times. • The cost per hour. A global money manager wanted to reduce About the Author the effort required by 100 financial analysts Robert Eve has held executive-level marketing and busi- October 6, 2009 Washington D.C. Spring 2010 Europe who build the complex portfolio models used ness development positions at several leading enterprise by fund managers. Its solution was to build a software companies. At Informatica and Mercury Interactive, virtualization layer surrounding the ware- he helped penetrate new segments as vice-president of November 2-4, 2009 Santa Clara, CA house to abstract away the complexity of the market development. Bob also ran marketing and alliances underlying data. This simplification resulted SAVE at Kintana (acquired by Mercury Interactive in 2003) where in a financial analyst productivity increase he defined the IT governance category. As VP of alliances at REGISTER TODAY AND of 25%, allowing many to be redeployed to PeopleSoft, he was responsible for more than 300 partners develop additional financial analytics useful and 100 staff members. In his nearly 10 years at Oracle, CALL 201 802-3021 OR EMAIL events@sys-con.com to the firm. Bob held positions such as Oracle manufacturing’s first product manager and head of its revolutionary software Greater Collaboration integration program, CAI. Bob has an MS in management For over a decade, SYS-CON Events has delivered the world’s leading i-technology Discovery capabilities within today’s data from MIT and a BS with honors in business administration conferences, seminars, and expos, including Virtualization Conference, Cloud Computing virtualization platforms quickly validate new from the University of California at Berkeley. He is a frequent Summit, SOA World, AJAXWorld, Enterprise Open Source Conference, “Real-World Flex” reporting solutions with end users using contributor to publications including SYS-CON’S SOA- Seminar Series, iTVcon, Real-World Java One-Day Seminar, and Real-World Ruby-on-Rails live data early in the development process. World and Virtualization magazines. Seminar Series. 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  8. 8. VIRTUALIZATION 2.0 possible resource degradation during concurrent virtual machine; however, it adds complexity to backup operations of multiple virtual machines the backup procedure. Restores should also be Solving the Virtual Machine on a single host server. Licensing, maintenance, and scalability issues may also be encountered. tested and verified to ensure consistency of the backups. Backup Conundrum Method 2: Backup Agent Installed on ESX Server Service Console Another method that can be used for backing Common disadvantages to all of the approach- es described above include possible resource contention and degradation during concurrent up and restoring virtual machines is to install a backup operations of multiple virtual machines Best practices for a backup-and-restore strategy backup agent on the ESX Server service console. on the same ESX server host. In addition, there in a VMware environment The backup agent can then be configured to backup the virtual disk files and virtual machine are maintenance and complexity issues involved in writing, scheduling, and maintaining the BY LAURA BUCKLEY configuration files (.vmdk and .vmx). These files scripts required, as well as the inability to restore contain the virtual machine operating system, individual files and directories from the backed- memory, and all data files. The entire virtual up .vmdk files. J ust when it seems that you’ve finally met data recovery. It’s possible a restore of an individ- machine can then be restored by simply restor- and solved your data backup and recovery ual file, file system, or database may be needed. ing these few files. However, it’s not possible to Method 3: Using VMware challenges, along comes another kink to It’s also possible a rapid restore of the entire ma- restore individual data files and directories from Consolidated Backup complicate the problem. chine is required in the event of a disaster, or you this backup. This method is typically faster than VMware Consolidated Backup provides a cen- While server virtualization provides many may want to move a virtual machine to a different creating a virtual machine, installing the operat- tralized backup facility for virtual machines. It’s benefits, it may create a conundrum when deter- physical machine for resource load balancing. ing system, installing the backup agent, and re- not a complete enterprise backup solution and is mining an organization’s best backup and restore There are three basic approaches that can be storing all of the data files as described in Method intended only as an enabling technology to be used strategy. combined to meet different backup-and-restore 1, so it’s preferred for disaster recovery and virtual in conjunction with enterprise backup software. In a physical server environment, some com- objectives: machine relocation. VCB is essentially a set of scripts and driv- bination of full and incremental backups of all • Install a backup agent in the virtual machine. To ensure a consistent and recoverable backup ers that enables third-party backup software to files, volumes, and servers are most likely being • Install a backup agent on the ESX Server service of the full virtual machine, it’s recommended that protect virtual machines through a centralized performed. Perhaps you’ve included a product console. you pause, suspend, or freeze the virtual machine backup “proxy” server that runs on a Windows that provides deduplication and an incremental- • Configure a VMware Consolidated Backup with one of the following approaches: server. Doing backups “by proxy” removes the only backup strategy that reduces the need to (VCB) proxy server and install a backup agent • Back up the inactive virtual machine. This is backup workload from VMware ESX servers and do weekly or monthly full-system backups. Or, on it to centralize the backups of many virtual considered the best way to ensure a consistent virtual machines. maybe you’ve decreased your reliance on tape machines. backup; however, it requires that the virtual VMware supplies different sets of integration for off-site backups and have included a data machine be shut down during the backup. This module scripts for different third-party backup replication or snapshot technology that will help Method 1: Backup Agent Installed on may require pre- and post-backup schedule applications. You execute these scripts as pre- and to quickly restore critical applications or systems the Virtual Machine scripts that execute the commands to shut post-process commands for the backup agent on in the event of a failure. To achieve file level, directory level, and volume down the machine, back up the .vmdk files, and the proxy server. During the pre-processing, the But now that your servers have been virtualized level backup and restore, a backup agent in the the restart the machine. script calls the VCB proxy utilities either to create there are new challenges: What should be backed virtual machine can be installed. This is the same • Back up a suspended virtual machine. Again, a snapshot of the virtual machine and mount it to up? You’ll certainly want to continue to have as installing a traditional backup agent for a cen- you’d need to script pre- and post-backup the proxy server (for file-level backups) or export backups of all files and application data as you’ve tralized network backup application on a physical schedule commands to suspend the machine. the virtual machine to a set of files on the proxy done in the physical server environment. You’ll machine, and provides the same capabilities This method can minimize machine downtime, server (for full machine backups). also want to be able to restore any individual (i.e., incremental backups, full backups, file level but restores should be tested and verified to file, directory, or file system from these current restores, and full volume restores), but does not be sure that the backup of the .vmdk files are backups. But virtualization offers another level of provide for full virtual machine backups and consistent and restorable. consideration for backup. Since the “guest” virtual restores. • Back up an active virtual machine. Again, machines are presented by the “host” server as In the event of a complete virtual machine using scripted commands in pre- and post- files, you can back up the entire virtual machine recovery, the first step would be to install the backup schedule jobs; you can make a as just one or several individual file objects. This virtual machine operating system and backup snapshot of a virtual machine and backup the means that if backed up correctly, you could agent. Next, restore all of the volumes backed up .vmdk files. This approach essentially freezes restore an entire virtual machine by restoring just for the virtual machine from a full backup. This the virtual machine, but allows it to continue a file or two. would be a directory-by-directory and file-by-file operating with all updates being sent to a Let’s explore the best practices for a backup- restore. This is similar to a bare machine recovery snapshot file. When the backup is complete, and-restore strategy in a VMware virtual infra- process of a physical server and is typically more the post-schedule command script unfreezes structure environment. When deciding how best time consuming than restoring from a full virtual the machine and the changes in the snapshot to protect VMware virtual machines, it’s impor- machine backup as described in Method 2. file are committed to the virtual machine. tant to consider your business requirements for Common disadvantages to this method include This method provides for “hot backups” of the 14 MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 http://virtualization.sys-con.com http://virtualization.sys-con.com MAY / JUNE 2009 Volume: 2 Issue: 3 15

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