Heavily reliant on access to their data, digitally transformed organisations need infrastructure that is always available. So, what should you be looking for as your business begins its digital transformation journey (or prepares to take the next step)?
Here are five factors to consider as identified by IDC:
1. Solid-state storage
All Flash Arrays (AFF) offer highly performant storage and improved availability over spinning disk alternatives. AFFs also have the advantage of increased density, allowing for more storage to be packed into the same physical footprint.
When combined with NVMe technology, AFF arrays are even faster, further reducing the total cost of ownership and delivering the high levels of performance and availability needed for mission-critical operations.
2. Scale-out design
Cloud platforms have proven the importance of scalable computing, both in terms of containing costs through pay-as-you-use billing and by allowing businesses to grow and shrink resources as demand changes. Scale-out designs are therefore an essential aspect of high availability computing, allowing your business to draw upon additional resources whenever required in a non-disruptive manner.
A scale-out infrastructure allows for similarly non-disruptive upgrades. By connecting newer nodes to the environment, you can seamlessly migrate workloads using data mobility tools, removing older technology from the ‘pool’ once complete. You can stay at the cutting edge of HA computing without affecting operations.
3. Granular management for multi-tenant environments
As infrastructure density increases, businesses are forced to consolidate workloads. Although this maximises the value of hardware investments, it also increases the ‘blast radius’ – the potential damage caused to other applications and servers when one of the tenants fails.
To ensure high availability, operators need systems that allow them to better manage the environment on an application-by-application basis. They can then configure the storage to better manage each workload and its requirements – and limit the impact of any failures.
4. Support for the hybrid multi-cloud
The majority of businesses (80%) are now using hybrid cloud operations, often with multiple providers. To ensure seamless high availability operations, they will need a unified control plane that provides visibility across all their assets, no matter where they are located.
This will almost certainly involve a shift towards software-defined infrastructure, allowing for increased automation of platforms like Kubernetes and Ansible. These enhanced API controls allow operators to better understand their environment and simplify management across the multi-cloud.
5. Automated storage management
With hybrid multi-cloud operations, the IT environment is only becoming more complex. It is now almost impossible to meet high availability SLAs while relying on manual processes.
Instead, operators should be looking at tools that allow them to automate storage management using policies and artificial intelligence. These tools not only accelerate management and deployment but can also be used effectively by IT generalists, reducing the need for costly, hard-to-hire storage specialists.
Smarter storage for high availability applications
These 5 tips are just the starting point for high availability infrastructure design. However, this should be enough to help you start asking the right questions to ensure you get the platform your business needs.
To learn more about building a high availability storage platform for the future and how WTL can assist, please give us a call.