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Taneja Blog / Software Defined/Virtualized Infrastructure

Who Owns Virtual Infrastructure Performance?

As my colleague Jeff Byrne noted last week, widespread virtualization is driving the creation of new roles in the data center. These new roles span traditional operational silos and can help drive new levels of efficiency in the virtual infrastructure, but there’s a downside. Each new role adds another team member to every conversation, and can strain lines of communication that took years of experience and planning to construct. When all’s going well, these additional roles add new levels of expertise, and new perspectives. But, in the virtualized data center, when a tricky performance problem arises, who owns it? Is it a virtual server problem, a storage or network problem, or a new problem in any of these tiers caused by virtualization? Does the new virtual team have the right data or experience to troubleshoot?

Earlier this year, Taneja Group began calling attention to the next wave of virtual environment management solutions, which we termed Virtual Infrastructure Optimization, or VIO. VIO represents the natural evolution of management needs for a maturing technology. In the early days of virtualization, we focused on conversion and consolidation; then, as virtual machines proliferated, the demand for provisioning and change management ramped up, along with tools for self-service and sprawl control; today, production-class virtualization demands solutions focused on performance: base-lining it, measuring it, and maintaining it.

But who’s the buyer of performance management solutions? Which IT operations user community should vendors target, and does the community even have a name yet? The playing field is getting larger, with new solutions appearing monthly for virtual storage performance, virtual server tuning and optimization, and virtualized application and user response-time performance management. These offerings come from the leaders (Dell’s EqualLogic team, VMware’s AppSpeed) and a host of hot startups (vKernel, BlueStripe, Virtual Instruments), and each is promising on its own. The winners will be the ones who can target the true owners of performance problems in the virtualized data center, and I don’t think they’re easy to find just yet.

  • Premiered: 07/29/09
  • Author: Taneja Group
Topic(s): virtual infrastructures Virtualization


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