Designing your company’s virtual infrastructure with best practices in mind is essential for network transparency, flexibility, and planning. If you’ve inherited – rather than designed – your virtual infrastructure, it’s best to step back rather than support “good enough” policies. Building a plan to get back to design principles can help you form a sound basis for maintenance and management in the future.
You should regularly refine your plan to determine if it makes sense to integrate new technology. Technologies that lacked integration support or had an unreasonable price tag a couple of years ago may be practical now. While most enterprises design virtual infrastructures for availability, all organizations experience failure eventually. Having a disaster recovery plan in place is crucial for a complete vision for your virtualization infrastructure design.
Lastly, remember that the perfect virtualization infrastructure design for your situation may still fail without the right level of flexibility. Cloud migration and digital transformation are moving targets, and your IT teams need an approach to virtual infrastructure design that will keep up.
Create a Plan With Virtualization Infrastructure Design Principles
If your virtual infrastructure has separate networking, computing, and storage elements, it may help to shift to a converged or hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) to fit your future needs.
The most compelling reason for HCI is that it can streamline separate functions. However, the result can put a lot of pressure on power demands, so if you have a data center with aging server racks, you can anticipate some issues. If a full HCI plan isn’t possible, you can incorporate shared storage pools through virtualization hosts or take steps toward this with a distributed approach and gradually reduced infrastructure costs.
Always Plan for Potential Virtual Infrastructure Failures
Your virtualization infrastructure design must assume failure is inevitable. Your infrastructure likely prioritizes availability and has features in place to prevent an outage, but don’t fall into the trap of thinking hardware failure isn’t possible.
Consider incorporating failure preparation as a design principle for faster recovery with extra hardware and documentation of any changes. Because failure often stems from human error, documentation can help your organization track where a problem originated and prevent future issues. Even if you can’t tie a problem to a simple error, accurate documentation can help keep stakeholders up to date on your recovery plan.
Embrace Flexibility in Your Virtual Infrastructure Design
The right virtual infrastructure design meets current and future needs, so you should build cloud and hybrid options into your infrastructure deployment. If you’re like most organizations, your cloud migration probably hasn’t followed a clear path and has instead taken a few messy turns with various uncoordinated services. You may face some challenges during the design process, but it’s vital to organize your existing cloud services and create a path for the future, including virtual infrastructure planning.
To learn more about how you can apply these principles to your virtualization infrastructure design, contact us at TailWind. We can help you leverage the right technologies for your organization’s future growth.