It’s no secret that system downtime is bad for business. For one thing, it’s expensive. According to a 2012 Aberdeen Group report, the average cost of an hour of downtime is now $138,888 USD — up more than 30% from 2010. Given these rising costs, it’s no wonder that ensuring high availability of business-critical applications is becoming a top priority for companies of all sizes.
When it comes to choosing the right downtime protection, there are a couple of important things to keep in mind. First, deployment of applications on hypervisor software for server virtualization is increasing at a steady pace and is expected to continue until almost all applications are implemented on virtualized servers. As a result, you need to make sure that your downtime protection is able to support virtualized as well as non-virtualized applications. Second, with IT spending and headcount on the decline, downtime protection should be easy to install and maintain since there are fewer IT resources available to manage the assets.
Available downtime protection options range from adding no additional protection other than that offered by general-purpose servers to deploying applications on fault-tolerant hardware. Which option you choose will depend on the type of application in question. If the application is mission-critical, then you’ll need higher levels of protection. A strong segment of companies are choosing to protect each of their mission critical applications with fault-tolerant servers because they provide the highest availability, require no specialized IT skills, and are now priced within reach of even small to mid-size companies. Looking for guidance in choosing the right downtime protection for your “can’t fail” applications? Download the Aberdeen Group report to learn more.
When it comes to virtualization, most of the easy stuff has been done. Now IT wants to get more out of its investment. Business- and mission-critical applications are obvious targets. It’s not a question of can it be done, but whether can it be done safely. The pain of downtime and data loss raises a caution flag.
That’s where Stratus and Virtualization for Dummies come in. Despite the humorous title of the “Dummies” series, we’re very serious when it comes to helping industry professionals get up to speed on this very beneficial technology.
Virtualization technology is being widely applied today with excellent operational and financial results. In fact, it has become a matter of course for most businesses to work with some aspect of virtualization. Virtualization for Dummies provides you with a brief introduction to the subject, discusses cloud technology, and helps you understand the various options regarding availability. Knowing all this can help you create an action plan as you move forward with the next phase of your virtualization infrastructure.
Readers will learn:
Take your next steps in application virtualization by downloading Virtualization for Dummies.
Stratus Technologies’ high-availability (HA) Stratus Avance Software 3.0 now includes support for Intel Xeon E5 “Sandy Bridge” processor-powered servers. This is an exciting development for companies that use Intel Xeon E5 servers manufactured by HP, IBM, Dell and Intel, as Avance software proactively detects and prevents downtime and ensures that their applications run without interruption.
Avance software is the only HA solution that automatically detects, isolates and handles faults, keeping applications running despite system interruptions. Avance software constantly monitors system heartbeat and the health of drives, fans, power supplies and other system components to predict faults and performance degradation. This system management dashboard gives the IT administrator detailed configurations and alert information as well as guidance on resolving issues.
This next generation of Avance can support up to 24 virtual machines (VM) on a single licensed HA server platform, a 50 percent increase over its predecessor. The improvement in VM density can lower operational, maintenance and management costs by enabling more consolidation of servers and applications.
This is also an important development for our channel partners. Frank Vincentelli, chief technology officer at Integrated IT Systems, a computing services firm and Stratus4Uptime channel partner, feels the development is critical to maintaining healthy relationships with customers. “Adding IT talent is expensive and application downtime is disruptive, and our clients very much want to minimize both,” he said.
Avance 3.0 software is an organization’s best protection against unplanned downtime and data loss for their most important applications. Avance proves that HA can be simple to achieve and manage, and affordable to implement in organizations of any size. No other HA solution offers more.
Some additional features of the newest release include:
Complete product details are available here.
When it comes to protecting critical production applications, most manufacturers are not taking advantage of proactive high availability solutions to prevent downtime. The majority of businesses choose reactive backup solutions, leaving applications unprotected from downtime, which can cause significant damage to a manufacturer’s reputation and bottom line. In partnership with IndustryWeek, Stratus conducted a survey of manufacturers to determine what type of solution or high availability strategy they are using to protect against downtime.
Findings from the survey include:
“Like all businesses, maintaining continuous server uptime is critical for manufacturers. Even a few minutes of downtime can result in significant financial loss, and Aberdeen Group estimates that one hour of downtime costs business an average of $110,000,” said Dave LeClair, director of product management and marketing, Stratus. “From this survey, it is obvious that businesses need to be doing more than anticipating failure – they need a high availability plan in place that proactively prevents downtime. Otherwise, businesses put themselves at risk of short-term and long-term damage that can occur from any type of downtime.”
More than 500 IndustryWeek readers responded to the “Manufacturer IT Applications Survey,” representing a broad range of company sizes and products produced. The magazine tabulated results by annual revenue categories – less than $100 million, $100-$999 million and above $1 billion – and by the average of all respondents.
The full survey results were presented during a webinar hosted by IndustryWeek on May 31, 2012. Featured speakers included NetSuite’s GM of Manufacturing/Wholesale & Distribution, Roman Bukary, and Stratus’ Director of Global Alliances, Peter Cook, who offered insights into what manufacturers are currently experiencing with regard to downtime, as well as some best practices to prevent it. You can read about additional survey results on virtualization and downtime.
Introduced in the early 2000s, virtualization technology for x86 servers was initially used for software development and testing. By the end of 2005 virtualization was finding its way into production environments. Today, VMware, the leader in virtualization, categorizes this technology adoption as a three stage journey defined by an organization’s business goals and deployment strategies: IT production, business production, and IT as a Service (ITaaS). Each of these stages is further characterized by a primary business focus.
As IT organizations take this journey to move beyond simple server consolidation to virtualize Tier-1 applications and include cloud infrastructure designs in their IT strategies, the need for complete, bulletproof availability increases dramatically.
When VMware vSphere 5 virtualization is combined with fault-tolerant Stratus ftServer systems, you benefit from a strategic relationship focused on enabling critical applications. You can deploy virtualization in uptime-demanding environments with even more confidence.
Download the slides to learn more about Stratus_vSphere 5