Datacenters Innovation Forum 2016 conference

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

On September 2, 2016 the conference for DPCs took place in Kyiv. 90% of the event was dedicated to clouds and everything connected with them. Event was attractive as not vendors (there was only one – НРЕ) shared their experience in introduction and use of different technologies for clouds, but companies-integrators and cloud services providers. The value of the event was enhanced with vivid cases and practical experience represented in the speeches of the participants.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

Indeed, SIM-Networks Technical Director, Yurii Bonar, told about different conceptual approaches to cloud solutions, made brief review of complications the customers faced when planning transfer to the cloud, and told about the infrastructure architecture for various services and projects. Below – briefly set report theses:

 

Classical scripts for cloud deployment, – when on the basis of cloud solutions the deployment of services and resources takes place for the purpose of its further sale to internal customers, or for service provision to internal customers. As for example – startups, testing platforms for further growth. There are no capital expenses here: took, used, tested and then – either expand or remove those resources that are not required.

 

Establishment of the reserve platform for the company. Those tasks not allowing fully deploy on the clouds for some reasons (at most for safety reasons) use very often cloud infrastructure for doubling or backup of their data so that to have hot copies.

 

Struggle with peak loads: is it possible to increase or decrease dynamically computing capacities by request/schedule: days, hours, period, etc.

 

Full replacement of physical infrastructure: yes, lots today take a dim view of clouds, but the development of IT-infrastructures is firmly moving to the side of virtualization, and likely in future the very service-providers will deal with the “hardware”.

 

What the customers concern about when choosing cloud solutions? What questions are the most frequent? The biggest worry cause safety assurance and migration complexity (readiness of the infrastructure for migration), as well as service out-of-service time, etc. Affect the questions of scaling and productivity - to what extent would it be accessible in future, whether they are enough with flexibility extent for such solutions in future, and would the cloud not work worse than their current physical server does.

 

Complications with financial effectiveness assessment. The matter of safety by transfer to the cloud is rather the matter of trust to the provider. The customer itself must trouble of his/her safety and data backup – important data coding.

 

Fail-safety and protection against DDoS-attacks – cloud solutions by their structure are carrying out in themselves necessary elements for data doubling and replication. There exists a unified fail spot yet at the level of “hardware” – provider must have these all, if a cloud provider comes up for cloud structure seriously and professionally. As for DDoS-attacks – the cloud provider has already protection; there may also be address, additional protection, protection of a specific customers affected by DDoS-attacks.

 

Data separation is dictated by cloud options the customer selected; this may be achieved both with the help of SLA and with the technologies that guarantee by themselves a specific level and delimitations, and safety. Clouds simplified largely IT-pros’ life: there is no need to bother your head and to be constantly to some extent a network architect. Business considers only in how many resources it needs – RAM, drive resources, etc., but not the situations when the administrator says, “We can’t add memory as free space on the server ran out”.

 

Faster and easier calculation and predictability of expenses, business-processes bi-directional sizing. Improvement of resources distribution. Cloud technologies is a “trend in a trend” on the run to Internet of Things when devices become easier, some capacities are not put therein, everything is taken outside this device, to the cloud or somewhere else.

 

Clouds include a full set of market tendencies; it’s currently a very wide stream, most service's models. Taking into consideration transfer model from own virtualization into a cloud. As a rule there 2 alternatives: you lease the cloud, or you have your own equipment – in this case the administrators are subject to load increase, they are constantly thinking where the resources should be removes, where should be added, etc. Consequently, technical experts don’t worry about what the business needs, but what this “hardware” can allow. These constant questions “whether he thought over how much the opportunities may be expanded” – is the task of resource management” bumping up against the task of competent “hardware” configuration. Often such situation is possible when the equipment purchased for 3-4 years may run short for the planned use, current equipment configuration is not able to manage with existed tasks. Purchase of testing equipment is unprofitable, and the cloud may be tried on without exceeding expenses limits.

 

Fail-safety of different levels – the cloud provides it at the level of a virtual machine. However, that what is happening inside the instance the cloud cannot control: if your service has exhausted memory, on the cloud’s side it would look like everything is working. Cloud solutions assure that the virtual machine is started up and its parameters will comply with the declared ones. On the customer’s side the monitoring of his services anyhow shall be present.

 

Basing upon the questions asked to the speaker from the hall, the most potential can hardly “loose the touch with “hardware”. Furthermore, a problem of fails in the cloud great concerned the audience. There is an answer to this question: nothing works without fails, and fails will be always – the question in that how they are solved. Most frequently “cloud” customers do not feel any fails, maximum possible is provider’s full bankruptcy when one day the customer will not “evoke the response from” his/her cloud. But it’s a matter of provider selection and trust – see below.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

Head of Project Department SIM-Networks, Miroslav Migovich tells about subtleties of selecting a cloud provider.

 

Most companies just do not know how to start the acquaintance of their infrastructure with the cloud. They have some information; however specific barriers prevent them from making the first step. We will be glad if this recommendation will be of great help for somebody.

 

What shall be taken into account by the first approach to clouds and how to select a cloud provider?

 

Report theses:

Cloud concept is rather indistinct. To say generally – it is a software and hardware system placing on the platform with the provider and resources of which are leased. Customers don’t care where the capacity is located. User’s computer shall only know the address, through which it receives the data. Finally, the customer receives on the screen the same image as in case of regular working desktop, and he/she is of no concern such concepts as “clouds” and “virtualization”. The example from our life: in the 90ies when users for the first time started using e-mail, they had no concern where their letters are, on which continents and countries, just used this resource.

 

From business point of view by transferring to the cloud IT-infrastructure of the enterprise may transform from the deterrent into powerful developmental catalyzer. Of course, by taking into account all required conditions. Dynamics of global economic processes in the world for the last time make enterprises select that technology able maximum flexible, fast and adaptive respond to rapidly changing conditions of economic environment. Currently exactly cloud technologies fully comply with market requests. Analyzing tendencies it may be noted that the approach is changing depending on physical solution towards cloud solutions – ant it’s not the latest fashion. We can equate with human civilization development: the moment came when people have stopped creating such resources as heat and food at their places – now we address to the suppliers of such goods: we go shopping, conclude agreements with heat and power companies supplying our homes with illumination, heat and electrical power.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

How all benefits from cloud technologies may be gained? A very important peculiarity of all cloud projects: each project shall be considered individually, the cloud is not a remedy for everyone. It may be obvious but most providers forget about that, oftentimes they don’t hear at all that the customer says, and don’t want to see what this very customers needs. What should we do? Think over an adequate process for migration into the cloud. If necessary, add testing stage, add all required resources - help in such manner the customer to get acquainted and make friends with cloud technologies.

 

We all know terms “public cloud” and “private cloud”. They are built by single technology, single structure, but there are some important outstanding peculiarities. The principal peculiarity of the private cloud is that it’s isolated from the other provider’s customers. This model is always recommended for the companies having serious approach to data security; as a rule these are financial DB, etc. In private cloud the customer receives maximum control of his/her resources and maximum safety.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

What the most do our clients pay their attention to when start working in a cloud? Primarily, business pays attention to unique flexibility of this technology. But what is interesting that the concept flexibility by itself was abstract – it was complicated before to calculate compliance of the resources, business processes and investments. The process was long-term and not very accurate. Currently, having a pool of virtual resources and operating several figures only, required resources not only for subdivision but also to each working place may be calculated.

 

Effectiveness. As it has been already mentioned the customer has no need to know where the resources are, he/she wants to be sure that the infrastructure is functioning sound. As the enterprise pays only for those resources required, in such manner maximum ECE is achieved. Cloud’s investment attraction lays in that the focus is at all times made on “ownership cost”  - clouds significantly decrease the cost of owing the infrastructure, according to some researches, up to several tens percents.

 

Controllability. This is one of the priorities of most customers – level of resources consolidation is maximum if the enterprise moved to the cloud. Infrastructure control is sometimes possible with one person from any spot of the world. Moreover, such administrator will be able to recover not only the data but virtual machines as well by adequate archiving arrangement.

 

Reliability. It’s an important moment we often talk about with our customers. By its definitions the cloud cardinally differs from those solutions you are used to. All nodes, all communication channels are duplicated minimum by n+1 scheme. This allows the customers not to think at all about physical safety and solution’s fail-safety. They can devote their time and attention to the task closer to their business: FW levels, adjustments, applications and data. Everything else is the concern of the cloud provider.

 

Accessibility. Factor peculiarly important for enterprises having territorially subdivided structure. Cloud characteristic allows consolidating data in one place, and all remote employees and branches may use data centralized – it is already laid down in the system itself, the enterprise just uses it.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

Correct data archiving shall be stipulated at all times. It is convenient to archive in the cloud not only data, working places, but also entire virtual machines. At the same time you can use both local storages locating in the very cloud, and remote platforms making your infrastructure not both fail-safety and disaster-proof, what is more, with minimum investments.

 

Free of charge migration. Very often the company needs to transfer data. It is more profitable to select providers offering free of charge data transfer. It’s unnecessary to pay for each body movement, it’s enough to analyze the market and find optimum solutions exactly for you. Free data transfer can gain significant money by migration.

 

Throughput capacity inside the cloud – this point is very important from the technological point of view. It’s a delicate moment; most suppliers of cloud services talk unwillingly speak to this point. They do not want to disclose the structure of their network. But if we look deep into the point, this depends of how high quality service would you buy from the provider. This depends a lot on speed inside cloud. How are nodes connected between themselves, with which speeds, by which protocols. Services of the most enterprises can  easily work with 1 Gbit but it should be taken into account that the most providers use 10G, and only the most advanced build their clouds on 40G, or InfiniBand 56G. It is recommended to search for such providers so that the advanced infrastructure in a cloud may be obtained without any expenses.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

One more complicated moment – cores. We all know that leased virtual cores in the cloud can be of a great difference: there exist various generations of processors, different bus frequencies, various memory speeds. Don’t hesitate to ask providers questions which cores they offer to you; you must be acutely aware of what do you pay for.

 

Some words about migration process. There are different providers. Someone offers their asis services — take everything available, use, and how – we don’t bother about that. But it is better to search for the provider being not just a seller, but will become a partner for you and a consultant you can rely on, knowing that he will not leave you face to face with the problem in the situation you need help.

 

Some customers have applications work of which is not supported in virtual environment, and it’s better for them to cooperate with those providers who can give for lease both the cloud and physical equipment as well. This complexity can rescue you much: you will be able to get full complex of services from one spot, what also will save your money.

 

Data centers security. A delicate moment as well. Taking into account different events in this sphere we recommend selecting those providers who guarantee not only data security but also physical safety of your equipment.

 

Cloud calculation concept just starts penetrating the minds of business environment representatives. Potential evidence of this technology make most managers reinterpret their view in IT sphere and break the patterns. There is a very important psychological factor at this stage of the road: most are just afraid of new technology. That’s why at the initial stage of this process trust to provider is the most important aspect. Most of the time in communication with customers is dedicated to that to help the customer to “get friends” with clouds and break the pattern. But in fact sooner or later you should use this technology – we already use cloud technologies everywhere but giving no notion about that.

 

Further colleagues-integrators told about how they introduce and test cloud solutions.

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

There was a report about safety in the clouds. As most vendors see this “cloud” trend and try, on the one hand, to hear from the market any requests for security, and on the other hand – try to guess where and how the security will be required when using clouds. Of course, however much the clouds are good, security assurance by their use is one of the keenest challenges of our age.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

The report on VMware VSAN was very interesting. Most frequently this product is introduced for the development and testing of solutions for the projects limited in time. Furthermore, it is topical for provider services – linearly “on the fly” increase the capacity of the entire DPC. Some DPCs in Russia and Europe are build under this technology. As vendors liked OpenStack and started actively using, VMware takes into account and tries not being behind in this regard. VSAN technology does not allow increasing new servers and using the old ones, blade-drive support is available. The speaker shared a trick from his experience: if you don’t want to spend money for SSD-drives for testing this technology, in VSAN HDD-drive may be marked as SSD – of course, it will work slowly but you will be able to observe how technology works. A new version allows monitoring each machine separately. Let’s compare VSAN with Midrange DSS. VSAN is licensed by processors (without cores and volume).

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

The colleague from Latvia told about the experience of introduction VDI solution for large corporate customers in Latvia or Ukraine. At the beginning there was a negative experience of introduction on the other SW (in call-center the voice was transmitted with noisily). The project was implemented on VMware using Horizon 6, delay made up 40 ms, but VMware promises that VDI built on their solution will work with a delay of 200-300 ms. The speaker told that customer’s representatives work with VDI in the aircraft, surely, not so fast as usual is, but without fails. He told about the importance of debugging in VDI-projects. As in such projects the introduction is considered to be both installation and debugging (installation took 1 week, and solution testing – of 4 to 6 weeks) – it shouldn’t be left without full debugging otherwise the customer will be disappointed. More theses of this report:

  • there is no unified VDI solution for all customers;
  • not all tasks may be solved with VDI – it’s not the remedy;
  • anti-virus protection in VDI solutions are carried out by a special server anti-virus;
  • VDI is very handy as a unified backup for all.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

The speaker tells about how SW developers can use NetApp cloud solutions.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

The speaker tells about the solution for channel optimization when introducing cloud solutions. WAN-channel optimization is required at all times whenever good it may be: even if the throughput capacity is good, it is necessary to plan traffic distribution as without it any change in extent and data request may cause complications in access to cloud resources. Often happens that when the problem of IT-infrastructure takes place, “ networking professionals” say, “It’s not our business”, programmers, “Our application works perfectly”, – and it’s not just buck passing for fail, it’s really difficult sometimes to set facts. The speaker told about the solution monitoring the entire cloud infrastructure and helped to recover real state of things and processes. It’s more profitable adequately build, distribute and administer own network. But program network requires accurate adjustment in all alternatives of solution use or their connections. Often customer’s understanding and trust to cloud solutions comes gradually, with the knowledge of “suitability” - if first only customer’s 1C moved to the cloud, and already in a year both mail service and etc. are there. Even if these services are in a single cloud of a single provider, it is not a single infrastructure. And the prior task is to combine all these parts into already new, cloud infrastructure. Integrator’s work in that to calculate optimum infrastructure so that the customer, by new already cloud office, have no problems.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

 

Speaker from НРЕ in his engaging report told first in general, told that today wins not those who introduce some technology but those who introduce the idea itself, who first will introduce services and will not “give the technology”. As an example he introduced a monitoring system for state purchases audit “ProZorro”. As before Ukraine had not been realized anywhere saying nothing of the technology, but the idea itself. Then he told about what НРЕ can offer to cloud providers and companies-operators in sphere of support and cloud solutions implementation. Foe example, it was about linking solution – НРЕ Synergy. НРЕ does not replace cloud technologies suppliers – it give them more effective use. НРЕ as a manufacturer of a hardware platform lets the cloud solutions suppliers introduce them better.

 

It was going either about the infrastructure as a code – trend to support module, easily accessible to automatization infrastructure and describe it using high-level language. The speaker announced НРЕ’s plans concerning equipment might be used for clouds as well. He told about introduction by the vendor of future IT-industry, updates; for example, on September 26 a new release of SW for management allowing to control up to 480 servers in a single pool will be announced. He told that НРЕ system is providing 240GB of server-server interaction, without narrow nozzles. In sum, НРЕ wants to leave behind the future what concerns reserves of throughput capacity of its equipment focusing in the nearest future on the speed of 600GB.

 

There was a speaker, IT-Director from the company, a large retail network HHAC/HHAM, with a report on how did they move most part of their infrastructure to the cloud, how did they select a provider, how did they assess and make a project, how did they establish the infrastructure. Provided that the data and structure(s) were divided geographically. Why particular it was done so, the speaker did not tell  :). Engineer shared his experience that one could not forecast the entire corporate and customer traffic, and how much the application would be involved – everything is growing linearly. If before it was one CRM in their company, so now it’s already 20-30 applications. Introduced examples when the load on IT-department is larger, for example, on Fridays – they always have sale-offs and discounts, that’s why IT for all Fridays orders more resources. Furthermore, there is employees time correction (remote employees) when people works, the resources are involved, and at night the resources become available for other tasks. This temporary load increase may be either vertical or horizontal. There is own developed balancer distributing the loading between different cloud providers the customer is hosted with. Saving on flexibility of the balancing reaches in average 16% per year what is within a large company-reseller very notable. Told about the experience interesting for a large company (where everything is according to corporate standards), when the employees were provided with such applications they used to work with, those that they wanted and started working better.

 

sim-networks datacenters-innovation-forum-2016

From SIM-Networks’ hosting-provider were drawn the prizes for our cloud services.

 

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