Data is a business’s most precious resource. And when businesses tap into that goldmine by harnessing the power of data, their potential for growth is enormous. Those who aren’t yet making the most of the data that runs through their organisations are missing a huge opportunity to streamline processes and connect with customers – and ultimately risk losing their competitive edge. But, if they are to unlock this power, businesses need to think hard about how their data is stored.
The Wize Guys series offers wisdom for our data-driven world, and the storage of that data is a primary consideration. So, what should businesses look for when choosing a data storage solution to suit their needs?
Some must-haves include:
- Low latency. Accessing or moving precious data quickly is essential in our fast-paced world.
- Security. Trust and resiliency are factors that are too important to ignore, especially when you’re storing your business’s most valuable resource.
- Ease of use. Who needs complications?
- Cost efficiency. Every penny needs to be spent wisely, especially for smaller businesses. Getting storage right is worth investing in.
IBM recently announced the FlashSystems family of storage solutions. The FlashSystems products deliver on all of the above points without question, but there’s one thing that really puts them head and shoulders above the rest.
The FlashSystems family of storage solutions performs exceptionally in the hybrid multicloud environment. This means that you can find the most seamless solution for your storage, whether your data is on-prem, in the cloud, or a combination of both. With a smaller footprint and dramatic reduction in cost, too. FlashSystems solutions represent increased innovation with decreased complexity and cost. It’s storage made simple. Many of us fall into the trap of preparing for the hypothetical future when, in reality, the future is now. Don’t let your business get left behind. Make the “wize” choice for your business’s data with the FlashSystems family of storage solutions.
What’s Autonomous Database
Autonomous Database represents a shift in the database industry similar to what’s happening in the auto industry where cars are now parking and driving themselves, without direct human intervention. Autonomous Database is bringing both a technological shift and a financial model change to the way people leverage the best database in the world, Oracle Database. Autonomous Database delivers a machine-learning driven, self-managed database capability that natively builds in Oracle’s extensive technology stack and best practices for self-driving, self-securing and self-repairing operation. The Autonomous Database is completely self-managed, allowing you to focus on business innovations instead of technology and is consumed in a true pay-per-use subscription model to lower operational cost.
What’s Exadata Cloud@Customer
Many companies cannot simply move to public cloud due to challenges involving the regulatory nature of their data, data sovereignty laws requiring data to stay in country of origin, and the complexities of systems entanglement present in enterprise architectures. Systems entanglement happens because individual applications are coupled to others in such a way that changes to one impact the others, thereby complicating a move to public cloud. To mitigate these challenges while providing customers the benefits of cloud self-service and a pay-per-use financial model, Oracle introduced Exadata Cloud@Customer in 2017, bringing the cloud to customers who cannot simply transform to public cloud.
What’s unique about Autonomous on Exadata Cloud@Customer
With the introduction of Oracle Autonomous Database on Exadata Cloud@Customer (ADB-ExaC@C), the responsibility for managing both the infrastructure and the database software is transferred to Oracle’s autonomous operations and Oracle becomes responsible and accountable for the health and lifecycle operations of the databases. Exadata Cloud@Customer enables users of Autonomous Database to take advantage of their architectural Identicality with Oracle public cloud and the Cloud@Customer experience on-premises in the customer data center. Architectural Identicality enables hybrid usage such as development and stress testing in public cloud with production deployment on-premises. Further, Autonomous Database is uniquely elastic in that it can auto-scale up and down based on the real-time incoming workload while staying completely online, thus enabling a true pay-per-use model for ADB-ExaC@C users. The Autonomous Database also handles workload isolation and dynamic resource allocations to prevent the underutilization of physical resources and further optimize costs. These ADB-ExaC@C capabilities mean users no longer have to worry about administrative tasks such as database updates or security patching which are handled by Oracle’s autonomous fleet operations. Customers simply put autonomous operational policies in place and the autonomous software layers operate within the guidelines of the policies and the end result is a database cloud in the customer data center that provides governance and best practices for IT while delivering independence, agility and complete self-service for developers and line of business DBAs.
Getting started with Autonomous Database on Exadata Cloud@Customer
Autonomous Database on Exadata Cloud@Customer is easy to get started and begins with subscribing to some dedicated Exadata Cloud@Customer infrastructure. Oracle delivers and works with IT to register and activate the infrastructure with a regional control plane in Oracle’s public cloud. Autonomous Database on Exadata Cloud@Customer delivers a win-win for both IT and project team developers because IT gets governance and best practices in place while freeing developers to innovate with a simple to use self-service database cloud.
An IT Fleet group is created and allocates VM Clusters and Database Containers for the business, separating out dev-test, pre-production, and production environments according to best practices. Project team developers and/or DBAs are given access to specific labeled environments with quotas settled on by organizational budgeting plans. The developers and DBA’s self-service Autonomous Database within the limits of their issued quota and are free to create, start, stop, scale, clone, terminate and other actions on their Autonomous Databases completely independent of the Fleet Admin group. It’s possible for developers to get a mission-critical Autonomous Database with the click of a button or the call of a CLI or REST command in what amounts to seconds.
Autonomous Database on Exadata Cloud@Customer solves the regulatory and systems entanglement challenges some customers have that prevent a move to a public cloud. It brings the benefits sought after in a cloud based database solution right to their data center. It gives customers a complete self-service database capability implementing Oracle best practices in a self-managed, autonomous solution. Autonomous Database on Exadata Cloud@Customer enables the simplest transformation to database cloud, optimizing cost thru true pay-per-use, eliminating manual labor and human errors with a machine learning based self-driving, self-securing and self-repairing database.
The original concept of load-balancing and application delivery was uncomplicated. In the old architecture, a physical appliance deployed on site served as the central point to all the applications for load balancing, and security services. The networking world consisted of static boundaries and majority of the applications were served by the in-house locations.
However, the approach started to fragment quickly with the birth of cloud and virtualisation. Virtualisation enables many smaller load balancers to move and scale on demand, while the cloud dissolves the static network and security boundaries. Applications have become scattered throughout the cloud’s infrastructure.
Today, a central load balancer, serving all the application locations and types, no longer suffices. There is a high-priority need for a per-app application delivery controller (ADC) model of operation. Besides, the model should be available at the right price for the cloud, yielding customers the best return from their investment. In other words, the smart ADC model should be available at a smart price.
The cloud brings many benefits to organisations. It offers a pre-built global footprint, thereby, abstracting the many complexities of on-site I.T. infrastructure. One of the main benefits of the cloud is agility. However, if the cloud load balancing license model is rigid and lacks flexibility, the benefits of the cloud would be compromised by its price.
The costs of the Cloud
Every major load balancing vendor can satisfy the per-app ADC requirement; however, this is not the point at issue. The real issue is the associated costs, not from the cloud usage perspective but from the load balancer’s license perspective.
Clouds are expensive. Therefore, users are reluctant to overpay for the load balancing license when they are already paying a premium to use the cloud.
There is no magic formula or design configuration that gives the best cost ratio per license. The ideal practice could be to ensure that the consumption model must be understood and available with the vendor upfront. This would allow greater deployment flexibility at a reasonable cost.
License options – Perpetual & Metered (MELA)
Traditionally, KEMP have a perpetual load balancing license. The perpetual license fulfills use cases for both; the cloud and on-site, especially if the application is well understood in terms of usage and capacity.
The standard perpetual license locks the application into certain performance and feature metrics. It is useful in static environments but fails to accommodate growth or spikes such as when an application encounters a peak usage event.
Every network is a unique snowflake, with bespoke configurations, as is the application usage. More often than not application usage is not known and understood. Naturally, when something is not understood, you simply can’t apply a static framework around it and expect an optimal result. A perpetual license will not work with unknown use cases.
To overcome this challenge, KEMP Technologies offers what’s known as a metered license (MELA). A metered license is a month-by-month subscription, similar to that of a mobile phone subscription that includes a defined amount of usage for a fixed price with known costs for any usage beyond this.
For example, let’s say you are unsure and unaware of application peak usage and at times the number of load balancing cloud instances required may increase or decrease. This is a situation that certain users might come across quite often. In this case, users simply buy a 10GB license, covering all the instances and offering higher throughput at a fraction of the cost.
KEMP license structure permits 10GB of traffic and allows the deployment of as many load balancer instances in the cloud as required to satisfy the events of un-predicted or predicted traffic peaks. KEMP calculates the total peak for the entire deployed load balancing instances for that month. If it is less than 10GB, then it’s not a problem. Besides, if you do go over, even then it’s not a problem as there is an agreed surcharge.
The metered license model does not restrict operations. The instances are right-sized all the time regardless of peak usage.
F5’s – Enterprise License Agreement (ELA)
In comparison to KEMPs MELA licensing model; F5, offers what’s known as an Enterprise License Agreement (ELA). It consists of a pool of fixed licenses. Upfront, users pay for a number of licenses, issue them and invoke when required. It’s a simple model but comes with many restrictions.
The licenses are of fixed sizes so choosing a license will always be a balancing act between over-provisioning for normal use and under-provisioning for peak usage. This locks the applications down and has no granularity. Unfortunately, with this model, you will always be overpriced in terms of licensing. F5 ELA does not form the perfect marriage between load balancing, cloud deployments, and the associated licensing cost.
Applications are moving to the cloud. Organisations require a flexible consumption model in terms of licensing. KEMP metered licensing provides the right price for the cloud while retaining all the benefits that cloud and virtualisation have to offer.•• Original text from Kemp
The global impact of COVID-19 has given rise to unique challenges to businesses in Africa, and we know that finding new ways to adapt your operations and enhance IT resiliency has never been more complex.
But you don’t have to do it alone. Join IBM Think Digital Summit Africa experience, a highly concentrated
collaboration focused on accelerating essential recovery and transformation while providing the deep industry experience you need respond to this new business environment.
Attend Think Digital Summit Africa and learn how you can best protect and enable your organisation, manage risk, optimise costs and maintain customer satisfaction. IBM Think Digital Summit Africa provides a unique opportunity to learn from business across the globe and see how we can apply it in an African context. Here are a few sessions I think you should attend:
• The New Essential Technologies for Business. IBM's General Managers for Africa will engage with local CEOs to reflect on new IBM CEO, Arvind Krishna's, view of the essential platforms that provide businesses with the flexibility, speed, reliability and innovation they need to be successful in times of both crisis and opportunity.
• Scale Innovation at Speed with Hybrid Cloud and AI. Jim Whitehurst, President, IBM and previous CEO of Red Hat, will share the latest about IBM’s leading hybrid cloud and AI capabilities, built with Red Hat run-anywhere technology. Learn how a combined strategy is helping healthcare, financial, and other customers succeed in today’s changing world and prepare for what’s next with Cloud and AI.
• Building a Resilient and Smarter Business to Act at the Speed of Insight. Learn how leading organisations are deftly managing this change under extraordinary circumstances to align trusted information to decision making and building new platforms to redefine competitive advantage and transform their industries. See how you can leverage IBM's investment in IBM Garage methodology and its IX studio across Africa to manage your transformation.
• Learn more about IBM's response to COVID-19 and the solutions we have to help your business in these times and how IBM Research Africa is contributing to apply Tech for good.
This is a unique, unprecedented opportunity to learn together.
During times of crisis, disaster or pandemic, we are forced to change how we do business. This places new stresses on business functions, applications and networks. We depend on our IT infrastructure and business applications despite these circumstances.
Kemp Load Balancers are proven to deliver the always-on service availability, resiliency and security that your business needs. They maintain an optimal application experience for employee’s, external workers/ contractors, or to the public. Deployed as software, hardware or as cloud instances, the Kemp Load Balancer’s optimise the performance and availability of servers delivering important content to end-users, acting as a traffic-cop to deliver requests to the best network servers as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Kemp offers FREE no obligation trials of all our products. Try our 30 day FREE Trial.