Virtualization has brought possibilities that were unheard of in the past or difficult to achieve with most physical systems. Working with virtual systems presents different scenarios for creativity in IT.
Introducing virtualization in your remote office locations can help IT administrators to avoid server hardware dependencies and establish centralized and standardized setups for deployment and management. Here are trusted tips on how businesses can manage their remote vSphere infrastructure.
Table of Contents
Standardize deployment techniques
VMware ESX (i) hosts deployment can be achieved through customary USB media installation or CD/DVD, and through Preboot Execution Environment (PXE) network option. ESX (i) enables installation to SD cards, USB media, and local disks. Additionally, ESXi 4.1enables full booting supports FCoE, iSCSI, and FC. These deployment techniques support scripted installations where the administrators can specify customized kickstart file containing all installation parameters.
In remote office locations, it is crucial to have installation media that is local to the location and have configuration files in a more centralized storage location. This guarantees that updates are handled centrally and the amount of information transferred over WAN is limited during actual installation of remote host.
Pick correct licensing level
Licensing costs for remote office locations make many organizations avoid virtualizing them. As a result, most companies will only virtualize their main datacenters and this can be a disadvantage for the remote offices. Most administrators will run these remote locations as stand-alone hosts or use the free version of VMware vSphere Hypervisor. This can be a great setup for companies with fewer remote datacenter locations. However, for 10 or more datacenters, administrators must look for ways to centrally manage these locations. VMware provides licensing models that are specifically suited for Remote Office/Branch Office (ROBO) environments.
Many companies avoid virtualization of their remote offices because of monitoring problems. However, with advancing technologies and improvements, there are now several methods that are available for remote alerting and monitoring. Businesses can use monitoring techniques such as VMware vCenter, Veeam ONE, vMA, and Simple Network Management Protocol. Each of these monitoring methods has its own unique merits and demerits and companies should analyze the different options and choose what best suits their business. Launch Consulting VMware vSphere can help you choose the best monitoring technique for your business.
Backup and replication
Due to potential vendor lock-in and costs, most companies do not finance storage replication strategies for remote offices. Furthermore, on WAN links, data protection for the VMs is a great challenge. New technologies like data compression, data de-duplication, and Change Block Tracking (CBT) enable VMs backups to be carried out over WAN links to major datacenters. This eliminates the need to invest in costly hardware-based solutions. This solves the issues of backing up information from remote office locations and allows adherence to organization-wide data retention policies.
WAN optimization is a method of accelerating access to applications. It is achieved by eradicating redundant transmissions, prioritizing and compressing data, streamlining protocol, and staging information in local caches. With WAN optimization, businesses can easily virtualize their remote office locations without any problem.
Virtualization provides a myriad of benefits to businesses as it enhances their reliability and service using VMware HA technology. This is why businesses must ensure virtualization of their major datacenters and remote offices. With the aforementioned tips, organizations can ensure that their remote office locations also benefit from this new technology.