Guest post: Moving VM automation and inventory beyond Excel files

Guest post: Moving VM automation and inventory beyond Excel files

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Hi, I’m John Suit, CTO and principal founder of Fortisphere, which is a member of the Microsoft Startup Accelerator Program.

In this tough economy, the cost savings of virtualization are driving faster adoption – and the introduction of Microsoft Hyper-V is exposing more companies, large and small, to the benefits of this deceptively simple technology. 

In fact, from what we’ve seen, the scale of deployments has grown tremendously in the past year. When we did market research a year ago, people were calling their 90-VM environments “large.” Today, similar-sized deployments are “really, not very big.”  Today, 300-400 VMs are commonplace, with a mix of Microsoft Hyper-V and others platforms running together.

So, the deployment of VMs has become nearly routine. But, with scale, another problem has emerged: management of the environments.  Today, we mostly see folks provisioning VMs and mostly ignoring them until someone calls with a problem, at which point they scramble to prove that the virtual infrastructure is not to blame. Inventories of VM are either kept in Excel files or outsourced to teams of inventory-keepers. Change alerting, reclamation of idle VMs, and a whole bunch of other functions are untouched, as most folks are too busy with provisioning and troubleshooting.

A little automation can go a long way to changing reactive to proactive. Our customers have found that setting rules like a Time-to-Live for a VM can ease the reclamation process. Alerting – and even blocking – of certain configuration changes means fixing a change before it becomes a problem. Setting these rules by VM owner or functional group makes it intuitive and aligned with the way virtualized environments are built – to deliver infrastructure to the application owner.

Fortisphere provides the automation needed to operate a virtual environment. Fully cross-platform, the Fortisphere solution enables administrators to tag and track each VM, set rules to govern change management, alert on events, troubleshoot issues, and even remediate in real time. With full reporting capabilities, upcoming integration with Microsoft System Center VMM, and a focus on automating the daily challenges of operating a growing virtual environment, Fortisphere’s solutions have reduced the time, effort, and cost of virtualization for many customers.

John Suit

Listen to John’s podcast interview in DABCC Radio.

 

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