Virtualising the last vestiges of legacy: A sticky conundrum for enterprises
Veeam Software’s (Veeam) Product Strategy Specialist, Mike Resseler has said that enterprises are now becoming stuck, after having virtualised everything that can be virtualised, but are not making any headway with the last few remaining legacy workloads that cannot be supported in a virtualised environment.
He stated this observation when sharing the Malaysian results of the Veeam Availability Report, an annual global study of virtualised environments in 24 countries that face challenges delivering the needs of an always available business.
Veeam does offer solutions that help businesses virtualise apps. Resseler shared about the endpoint backup method, whereby a backup of a physical server, is restored as a virtual server, and about the method whereby a virtual version of an app is built from scratch, and it would use existing data to run. These are ways that do not interfere with the production environment, so businesses can still run as usual.
But there are more drastic measures as well.
Resseler explained, “Solutions that go from physical to virtual (P2V), need to be shut down, converted, have its drivers removed from the physical environment, and then put on a virtualisation platform and started again.”
“Enterprises that invest in the modern data centre and have workloads that cannot be ‘modernised’ along with the data centre, have to seriously reconsider what to do with it, so that it can fit in the modern era,” Resseler said.
Veaam’s research that spanned 24 countries and 1140 interviews has discovered that 84-percent of IT department decision makers (ITDM), admit their organisation suffer from an availability gap – IT departments are failing to deliver what users demand from IT in terms of application access.
According to the report, nowhere was this sentiment more strong than in Malaysia. Ninety-three percent of organisations in Malaysia are investing in data centre modernisation because they want to enable 24/7 operations. The average percentage of organisations in APAC, investing in the data centre for this same reason, is 68-percent.
The report finds that respondents in Malaysia displayed most fear among the APAC countries because of the more frequent and real-time interactions between customers, partners, suppliers and employees, as well as increasing adoption of mobile devices.
Despite the large data centre investments however, the average number of unplanned downtime events has increased to 15 from 13 in 2014. The average length of downtime time has also increased for mission-critical apps, which all adds up to devastating losses in terms of revenue, productivity and not to mention brand reputation.
Thirty-seven Malaysian respondents shard that patches and upgrades cause downtimes, the majority of the time, and more than anywhere else surveyed.
Resseler advised that spinning up a “virtual lab” or a backup environment that is almost identical to a live environment, is one way to test the behaviour of the patch or upgrade before it is applied to a live environment.
He also recommended taking data from live environments and learning from it over a period of time, could give IT departments valuable information on how to size their IT environments in the future.
“So, don’t just look at firefighting. Learn from the past about what is happening with your workloads and see what will happen in the future,” he emphasised.