I know a professional blog site is not usually where you will see personal revelations about the author’s current state of mind. I am going to go against conventions and tell you where I am in life. I am somewhat trepidatious about what the future holds. Now I know that to some of you that might be the understatement of the century.
However, those that know me, that will instead be quite an eyebrow raising moment. I am not one who is usually anxious about things or worries about tomorrow. I instead am a person that focuses on the now and works to complete the tasks of life that are directly in front of me. I don’t know whether it is the pandemic, the elections, or the state of flux in the economy, but I have caught myself thinking a lot about “what’s next?” When will the other shoe (or in the case of 2020, the other, other shoe) drop?
I also came to realize that if I am feeling this, I sure many others are as well. This includes many of our customers. So what to do? Well, for me, on the rare occasions that this happens to me, I like to go back to basics. Take a step back and do what I am comfortable with and what I know I can do successfully. Things like spending more time with family, working the nuts and bolts of my job to the best of my abilities, and listing out the things that are positive in my life every morning when I wake up. This may not work for everyone, but it works for me.
This process did get me thinking about my job and our customers. What would a calming “getting back to basics” process be that we might be able to offer or help them work through? I tossed many things around, and I came up with a few. The one I wanted to share with you today is the workings of a datacenter refresh plan.
Now you might ask, “with current flux in budgets and instability in the market place, why would you look at a refresh?” That is a great question. The answer is not a refresh in a “what am I going to buy” kind of mentality. Instead, a refresh PLAN that will allow you to immerse yourself in your environment and thoroughly understand exactly where it sits. Let me explain further.
Firstly, what do I mean by a Datacenter refresh? I would define this as a strategic IT infrastructure project intended to overhaul storage, servers and related network devices. Refresh project plans that address on-premises hardware, cloud-based platforms and services, and the in managed or co-located data centers — or a hybrid approach involving all.
But is that all it is? I would argue that there is more to this. You can also develop a good Datacenter refresh plan that is a top to bottom assessment of the current state of your IT infrastructure. This not only tells you what might be aging, but also what is costing you too much money to maintain. Discover where possible security vulnerabilities might be, or something as simple as what firmware needs to be updated.
Knowing this, the next step would be to understand what to consider when looking at a Hardware/Software Refresh.
Next, you would need to prioritize what part of your infrastructure needs to be refreshed or enhanced. A couple areas to start would be:
Once you have prioritized and completed these tasks/ and audits, you will have a much better idea of where to focus your budget. You can plan how best to take your environment through the next calendar or fiscal year. We also recommend to develop a best practices routine for how you can keep yourself focused on next steps and maintaining your current environment optimally.
Here are a couple of our most recommended:
In the end, whether you use these examples or not, the idea will be to put together a thoughtful, immersive, end to end deep dive. Discover what is working, what will soon need to be addressed, and what is critical to replace/enhance/ refresh. To me, that sounds like comfort food for the IT soul.
That knowledge and understanding would help me sleep at night. Knowing that I don’t have some unknown surprises lurking in a unsupported product that is about to die, or a security vulnerability because I did not update my firmware, or any other host of small issues that this kind of plan can mitigate. If you would like to learn more on this from Zunesis, we are of course standing by to help when and where it is needed!