When you work in IT, you’re used to being asked to do more with less. While virtualization has been central to achieving this goal, it is, in itself, no longer enough. Key to delivering greater efficiency and optimal resource management is the ability to seamlessly migrate workloads to their most efficient location.
Imagine, for example, being able to ‘follow the sun’ by shifting virtual machine (VM) workloads across the globe, as utilization rises or falls. Or consider having the ability to export HPC workloads to the public cloud for testing and tuning, and then bring them back on-premises again when they are optimized to address the massive data sets needed in the production environment.
These are ideal scenarios of course, so how do you go about turning them into reality? What are the architectural and hardware decisions needed to achieve this flexibility and efficiency?
The nine steps
There are just nine important considerations IT organizations need to consider in order to achieve smooth and efficient container and VM migration.
1. Hot or cold migration?
Do you intend to close down workloads and spin them up somewhere else as a permanent move, effectively replicating the workload on a different cloud or data center? Or do you intend to 'hot' migrate a workload? Working out which workloads will be moved where, why, and how frequently is the key focus of migration strategy.
2. Workload placement
Working through a rigorous workload placement methodology can help to clarify decisions and optimize infrastructure efficiency and total cost of ownership (TCO). It’s important to identify which workloads it makes sense to keep on premises and modernize utilizing a hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) environment, and which it makes sense to migrate to public cloud. You can do this by thinking through key requirements for these workloads, like performance, availability, data size security and latency.
3. Management infrastructure
How are you going to oversee the management and automate the provision of virtualized services? The more comprehensive the management infrastructure, the easier it is to move VMs, maximize efficiency, and propagate changes.
4. Data architecture
How do you solve the issue of data affinity when migrating VMs and workloads between various sites? For applications, accessing massive data sets then porting or replicating the data can be impractical. And, when using public cloud, economic complexity needs to be factored in.
How do you keep data and VMs secure within and between environments? Maximizing network and data security, and data persistence, is critical in managing successful migrations as the VMs and data flow north-south (in and out of the system) and east-west (within the system).
6. Architectural compatibility
How do you make sure architectures in the different sites where you will be running your VMs are compatible? For successful migrations it is essential that factors like the number of cores in the processor along with the memory, storage and I/O architectures are compatible.
7. Maximizing utilization by understanding application frequency
How will you ensure that you neither under- nor over-provision? The ability to analyze the current workloads across the IT estate and how they are best placed is crucial.
8. Network infrastructure
How will you maximize network performance when data is going north-south rather than east-west? Maximizing the utilization of the network infrastructure is a critical component of the VM migration strategy. Network capacity should be neither under-utilized nor in danger of becoming a bottleneck.
9. Optimizing edge compute
How will you decide which data it makes sense to send to be ingested at a central data center and which not? Using AI and machine learning, the applications can be trained to only send the important data back to the data center, reducing the data deluge and preserving network bandwidth.
Intel’s technology innovation
As well as careful thought and planning around these nine points, smooth and efficient container and VM migration also requires the right infrastructure. And this is where the latest Intel® technologies can offer a real advantage. The 2nd Generation Intel® Xeon® Scalable processor, for example, provides excellent performance across all benchmarks. It supports up to 3.5x better VM density performance compared to a five-year-old server1, helping lower TCO by up to 59 percent2, and reduce power and cooling costs. Meanwhile, Intel® Optane™ DC persistent memory, which only works with the 2nd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, uses advances in memory and storage architecture to radically reshape what is possible with system memory performance, density and TCO.
To read more about the nine steps and how to address them, as well as details of Intel’s technologies for smooth VM and container migration, download our white paper: Some Like it Hot – VM and Container Migration in Hybrid Cloud Environments.
For more information, www.intel.com/yourdata
Performance tests, such as SYSmark and MobileMark, are measured using specific computer systems, components, software, operations and functions. Any change to any of those factors may cause the results to vary. You should consult other information and performance tests to assist you in fully evaluating your contemplated purchases, including the performance of that product when combined with other products. For more complete information visit www.intel.com/benchmarks.
Performance results are based on testing as of dates shown in configuration and may not reflect all publicly available security updates. See configuration disclosure for details. No product or component can be absolutely secure.
1 Up to 3.5x VM density performance: 1-node, 2x Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2697 v2 on Canoe Pass with 256 GB (16 slots / 16GB / 1600) total memory, ucode 0x42c on RHEL7.6, 3.10.0-957.el7. x86_64, 1x Intel 400GB SSD OS Drive, 2x P4500 4TB PCIe, 2*82599 dual port Ethernet, Virtualization Benchmark, VM kernel 4.19, HT on, Turbo on, result: VM density=21, test by Intel on 1/15/2019 vs. 1-node, 2x Intel® Xeon® Platinum 8280 Processor on Wolf Pass with 768 GB (24 slots /32GB / 2666) total memory, ucode 0x2000056 on RHEL7.6, 3.10.0-957.el7.x86_64, 1x Intel 400GB SSD OS Drive, 2x P4500 4TB PCIe, 2*82599 dual port Ethernet, Virtualization Benchmark, VM kernel 4.19, HT on, Turbo on, result: VM density=74, test by Intel on 1/15/2019.
2 Configuration details: Up to 59% TCO savings with Intel® Xeon® Scalable processor compared to 5-year old system. 1-node, 2x Intel® Xeon® Processor E5-2697 v2 on Canon Pass with 256 GB (16 slots / 16GB / 1600) total memory, ucode 0x42c on RHEL7. 6, 3.10.0-957.el7.x86_64, 1x Intel 400GB SSD OS Drive, 2x P4500 4TB PCIe, 2*82599 dual port Ethernet, Virtualization Benchmark, VM kernel 4.19, HT on, Turbo on, result: VM density=21, test by Intel on 1/15 /2019. 1-node, 2x Intel® Xeon® Platinum 8280 Processor on Wolf Pass with 768 GB (24 slots / 32GB / 2666) total memory, ucode 0x2000056 on RHEL7.6, 3.10.0-957.el7.x86_64, 1x Intel 400GB SSD OS Drive, 2x P4500 4TB PCIe, 2*82599 dual port Ethernet, Virtualization Benchmark, VM kernel 4.19, HT on, Turbo on, result: VM density=74, test by Intel on 1/15/2019.
Cost reduction scenarios described are intended as examples of how a given Intel- based product, in the specified circumstances and configurations, may affect future costs and provide cost savings. Circumstances will vary. Intel does not guarantee any costs or cost reduction. Example based on estimates as of March 2019 of equivalent rack performance over 4-year operation on virtualization workload running VMware vSphere Enterprise Plus on Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server and comparing 20 installed 2-socket servers with Intel® Xeon® processor E5-2697 v2 (formerly “IvyBridge”) at a total cost of $796,563 [Per server cost $39.8K: acquisition=13.7K, infrastructure and utility=4. 2K, os & software=12.2K, maintenance=9.7K ] vs.. 6 new Intel® Xeon® Platinum 8280 (costs based on Platinum 8180 assumptions) at a total cost of $325,805 [Per server cost $54.3K: acquisition=28.9K, infrastructure and utility=3. 5K, os & software=12.2K, maintenance=9.7K]. Assumptions based on https://xeonprocessoradvisor.intel.com, assumptions as of Feb 13, 2019
All information provided here is subject to change without notice. Contact your Intel representative to obtain the latest Intel product specifications and roadmaps.
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