Insights

Is this how your organization embraced the cloud?

Aug 21 ,2017
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Many organizations have already transitioned large parts of their IT environment to the cloud. Thankfully, some have documented their journey online so that we can read their story and learn from it. What you generally see, is that the successful ones approached it purposefully, with a great deal of forethought and planning. Even so, it’s a big undertaking and there were still unforeseen challenges along the way.

Unfortunately, for every organization that was afforded the opportunity to strategically move to the cloud, there seem to be ten that ended up with the Leeroy Jenkins strategy.

For those that might not be familiar with good old Leeroy, he gained notoriety years ago when a video was posted of him playing World of Warcraft with his buddies. In a nutshell, his companions can be heard developing a detailed attack plan for what seems like ten minutes, when Leeroy suddenly barges into the room screaming his surname and attacking like a berseker! They follow him in and their entire group is unceremoniously wiped out. It is hilarious!

What’s not hilarious, is leveraging cloud and ending up with as many new problems as you hoped to solve.

  • Costs are much higher than expected and climbing. What’s worse is you don’t know why. Do you need all these things, are you leveraging cloud resources cost effectively?
  • Your data is now distributed across a wide array of providers. They don’t all have the same SLAs when it comes to availability, recovery or compliance. The cloud provider takes care of all that right?
  • Security was discussed but it was done service by service without a comprehensive plan. Now you’re not sure how secure you are. You don’t have the visibility you once did.
  • Initially you were just focused on getting these apps out of your data center but now you’re being asked to provide some business intelligence and dashboards across multiple data repositories.

Initially you were just focused on getting these apps out of your data center but now you’re being asked to provide some business intelligence and dash boardsacross multiple data repositories.

The good news is that flexibility is probably the best thing about cloud. You can certainly get yourself in trouble but in most cases, you can get out of it easier and with less cost than if you had the same problems in your physical data center. What you need is someone with experience and the right set of tools to help you take this on, so that you can move from just being in the cloud, to maximizing how you leverage it.

Prescriptive is a pragmatic organization and we have this crazy idea about needing to understand our client’s challenges before we start pitching a solution. Because of this, we don’t talk a lot about products but in this area one solution we like quite a bit is Turbonomic. Over the years, Turbonomic has developed into a pretty comprehensive solution but the main thing it does is capture all the details about how your infrastructure is being used, make recommendations on how to optimize it and then actually assist you in making the appropriate changes. It does this for both cloud and on premises infrastructure.

There are other solutions that aim to do the same thing but in our view, Turbonomic does it best. The number of data points they collect and factor into the recommendations provide much greater certainty. This is critical because lowering costs is great but you need to maintain performance as well. We’re big fans of Turbonomic and apparently so is Cisco, since they just made a deal with them to OEM the solution as Cisco Workload Optimization Manager. Here is a link that talks about the relationship. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HP9vvHHGujI

If you have concerns about what you are spending on infrastructure, Turbonomic is definitely worth checking out. If you have challenges in the other areas we talked about, we can help their too and would love the opportunity to get to know you.

By the way, you can find the infamous Leeroy Jenkins video on youtube. His friends were more than a little upset by his shenanigans and there is a quite a bit of NSFW language. If that bothers you, stick with my retelling of the event and don’t actually watch the clip.