Virtualizing Cisco’s data center architecture requires not only an overhaul of the network infrastructure but a transformation within the IT organization to support new business models.
Cisco’s virtualization strategy focuses on three main criteria: capacity, business continuance, and business transformation.
Check out this video to learn how Cisco IT is putting our virtualization strategy into practice at the data center in Richardson, Texas.
Gone are the days when capacity could be measured in square feet. Now capacity needs to be measured in terms of the megawatts of power that IT can deliver.
More importantly, the focus needs to be on what percentage of that power actually gets to the CPU and to your ability to compute and really drive your applications and services.
Then you also have to build business continuance into the data center architecture.
Currently Cisco’s data centers run in an active-standby model. Leveraging virtualization going forward we’ll run them in an active-active model.
So, if we lose operations within data center 1 because of a power outage, for example, the other active part of the data center complex (data center 2) would automatically take over and run the applications lost or affected by the outage in data center 1.
This approach will give us the agility to move or provision services in either data center 1 or 2, or even move the services from a data center to an entirely different data center complex located somewhere else in the world.
But none of the gains from optimizing capacity or the many other efficiencies virtualization can bring will be fully realized if you don’t make a top-down commitment to transforming your IT organization from the traditional, technology-siloed structure to one that truly focuses on the services that need to be delivered, both to your business and to your customers.