Becoming A Hybrid Cloud Expert
This book, by Mitch Tulloch with the Microsoft Virtualization team, is for IT professionals who want to learn more about Microsoft virtualization and virtualization-enabling technologies. It convers many areas of virtualization solutions including: Virtual Machine Manager 2008, Application Virtualization, Presentation Virtualization (Terminal Services), Desktop Virtualization, etc. You can download the book here.
Current economic downturn confronts us with a tremendous impact and unfavorable trend on worldwide IT budget and spending as discussed in Simple Savvy Savings - 9 ideas to make anyone a Cost Cutting Hero by Tom Pisello, CEO, Alinean, Inc. More than ever companies are now looking for every opportunity to further cut costs and maintain competitiveness during these times of global economic instability. Nevertheless, the adversity also presents a very opportunity for us to accelerate and transform IT into a more mature, better managed, and highly optimized settings. And there are methodology, tools as shown below, and case studies to help us get started the processes.
This cost savings analysis tool examines IT infrastructure and platform to identify cost savings opportunities focusing on:
The tool generates a report with specific project recommendations that can be implemented to generate high-impact costs savings with minimal investment.The results can be refined to match specific details of the IT environment and local currency. The calculation is based on research by IDC, Forrester, WiPro and Alinean and the results include recommendations to projects which can be implemented to generate high-impact cost savings with minimal investment.
The Optimization Self-Assessment Tool on the other hand derives optimization score, peer comparison, and value assessment for your organization. The tool generates a comprehensive report that can serve as an actionable roadmap and incentive for optimizing your IT infrastructure and platform.
Identify your goal, find out where you stand, and make an informed decision. We must start the process now.
Reference: Microsoft virtualization cost saving whitepaper, the ROI tool and training
The referenced white paper presents case studies of Microsoft customers including:
and examines how virtualization technology simplifies their IT infrastructure, streamlines IT processes, and ultimately reduces the total cost of ownership. Also included is information based on Microsoft's experience as below:
In my view, strategies in general to relatively quickly reduce IT infrastructure and support costs with virtualization solutions are, not in a particular order, to:
To transform existing IT into a hybrid environment mixed with physical and virtualized computing resources, server virtualization (i.e. server consolidation) often is where it starts. Running multiple instances in a single physical machine is not a new concept and many of us have already experienced with some host virtualization solutions like Virtual PC and Virtual Server.
To realize what your organization can benefit from Microsoft virtualization solutions,
Essentially, first identify your best candidates for server consolidation with this free downloadable tool, Microsoft Assessment and Planning (MAP) Solution Accelerator. With its agent-less inventory, performance data gathering, and auto-generated proposal and report generation capabilities, MAP lets you conduct network-wide readiness assessments so you can quickly and efficiently determine the right servers to target for Hyper-V. After determined how many servers to consolidate, you can use the free Microsoft HyperGreen Tool to figure out how much energy you’ll save and the environmental impact of those savings. Simply plug in the number of servers you are going to consolidate, and HyperGreen generates a report detailing your reductions in kilowatts, money and CO2 emissions. And use the Microsoft Integrated Virtualization ROI Tool to estimate your return on investment in Microsoft virtualization solutions, including server, desktop and management. As our customers have shown, the results can be transformational.
In the TechNet Webcast: Microsoft Solutions for Windows Vista Management (Level 300), I will demo a number of capabilities for managing Vista desktops and Windows environment in general. Microsoft Advanced Group Policy Management (AGPM) 3.0 is one of the 5 components in Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack for Software Assurance (MDOP) 2008 R2. AGPM enables the change-approval workflow of Group Policy Objects (GPOs) and is something I thought worth a special introduction here. Meanwhile I am also developing a screencast and will publish it here soon.
AGPM is to help customers better manage GPOs, particularly those with complex information technology (IT) environments. A robust delegation model, role-based administration, and change-request approval provide granular administrative control as described in the overview whitepaper and shown below. For example, you can delegate Reviewer, Editor, and Approver roles to other administrators — even administrators who do not have access to production GPOs. The Editor role can edit GPOs but not deploy them; the Approver role can deploy GPO changes. AGPM also helps reduce the risk of widespread failures. You can use AGPM to edit GPOs offline, outside of the production environment, and then audit changes and easily find differences between GPO versions. In addition, AGPM supports effective change control by providing version tracking, history capture, and quick rollback of deployed GPO changes. It also supports a management workflow by allowing you to create GPO template libraries and send GPO change e-mail notifications. Step-by-Step and Operations Guides of AGM 3.0 are also readily available.
For those who are interested in finding more, MDOP 2008 R2 was RTM in September of 2008. Here are demos, more demos, and FAQ. Subscribers can download MDOP 2008 R2 from the TechNet and MSDN subscription sites. The availability of the components is as follows through Microsoft Volume Licensing Service (MVLS):
The official MDOP blog is the channel to get the latest.