Modernized data centers require a great deal of investment and planning to be implemented and deployed correctly. As an IT leader, you must deploy the data center properly from the outset and ensure that it operates the way it was intended across its entire lifecycle. Otherwise, your enterprise will never realize its full potential and miss out on valuable ROI. While there are many challenges in building, operating, and supporting a data center today, we have identified five highly preventable pain points that companies find themselves struggling with today. The good news is that today’s intent-based networking (IBN) solutions such as Juniper Apstra can permanently relieve these common pain points.
1. Budget and Resource Limitations
Over the past two years, nearly every business has contended with limitations in the form of personnel shortages or limited supply chains. The higher cost of borrowing and financing further accentuates the challenge of starting a new data center project. Companies can no longer afford the traditional practice of overprovisioning. Instead, they need a holistic view that proactively determines predicted demands and match it with proportional resource capacities in real time. Additionally, data centers can no longer be dependent on manual processes because understaffed IT teams don’t have the means to constantly put out fires, troubleshoot, or update systems every day.By leveraging advanced tool sets that are backed by automated analytics and machine learning, small IT staffs comprised of skilled personnel can get more out of your data center with less. IBN can vastly reduce the time it takes to plan and implement a data center. It can streamline and automate common operational tasks such as:
- Configuration changes
As a result, data center operations are no longer limited by your shorthanded IT staff or budget limitations.
Just as server virtualization allowed companies to escape the inelastic nature of hardware systems, companies need to find other ways to inject greater agility into their data centers. The agile approach to software development has accelerated the pace of new releases and updates to systems and applications. Companies must now ensure that their data centers can keep pace as well. Unfortunately, too many companies remain saddled with technical debt, brittle legacy technologies, and poor visibility into their IT estates. But speed is only part of the equation, however. IT teams must have a means of predicting the results of accelerated configuration changes in advance to ensure that new services and configurations are deployed carefully.
Only intelligent automation can keep pace with the fluid nature of software code. Because Juniper Apstra is technology agnostic, it can orchestrate multiple devices using prescribed templates and automation. Proposed designs and configuration changes can also be validated prior to deployment, giving admin teams the proper insight into the impact of those changes. This ensures that the end results are indeed matching the original intentions. Data centers might be composed of brick and mortar, but IBN will elasticize them.
3. Poor Reliability
Manually dependent processes are suspect to human error. That’s just a fact. A frivolous fat finger configuration mistake could invoke real consequences that disrupt your enterprise’s critical workflows. Human dependency also occurs when configurations aren’t documented or mapped out. Thus, when a key member of your team leaves, a valuable knowledge base walks out the door with them. Given this transient era of employment, perhaps this pain point rings a little louder.
Juniper Apstra’s IBN solution can improve datacenter reliability by taking the human element out of as many basic processes as possible. By automating and validating these tasks, the chance of error is vastly reduced. Once deployed, every validated change is documented as part of a bigger process that maps out the entire inner workings of your data center. This gives all members of your staff equal access to all information.
4. Slow Deployments
Slow and steady is no longer applicable in a 24/7 world. You must stay ahead of your competition, both from a business perspective as well as a technological one. Being towards the end of the pack results in lost opportunities and increased costs. Whether you need to implement an entire data center or deploy a simple system update, Juniper Apstra can reduce the necessary provisioning time to get the job done quickly, while ensuring that it is done correctly as well.
5. Lack of Infrastructure choice
Everyone likes having options no matter the scenario. Options create opportunities that lead to success. Unfortunately, when you let a single vendor dictate your technology choices, you essentially surrender your freedom of choice. Contrary to what they believe, what is good for your top vendor isn’t necessarily good for you. There is real value in having a system controller for your data center, but only if it has the flexibility to support multiple vendors and devices. Juniper Apstra integrates with some of the biggest vendor names in the hardware and software industries including Cisco, Arista, Microsoft, Cumulus Networks, and of course, Juniper Networks.
You may not be currently contending with all these common pain points, but there’s probably one or two worth relating to. And as every scenario can be different, you probably have other pain points not mentioned here. Whatever the case, an IBN approach can help you alleviate them. IBN is a new concept, and one that can’t be fully understood in a single blog. That’s why we invite you to speak with one of our IBN experts at WEI that can fully explain this new empowering way to design, implement and manage next data center project.
Next Steps: Download our FREE whitepaper to learn how Juniper Apstra relieves the pain points mentioned above, staying the course with your network, and how to achieve cost savings across your network’s lifecycle.