Table of Contents
- Understanding the complexity of IT infrastructure management: The larger picture
- Entering Virima’s all-in-one platform: Create efficient IT infrastructure management processes
- ViVID™ for Efficient IT infrastructure management in the face of constant change
- Wrapping up: Virima’s all-in-one platform for navigating the increasing complexity of IT infrastructure management
The scale of complexity in IT infrastructure management has a striking resemblance with one of the main characters of a sci-fi story, most likely from Asimov’s Foundation series of the 90s, where a highly educated engineer working for FTL spaceflight systems didn’t know how FTL travel worked. He only knew how to design only one part of a single microchip needed in the FTL spaceflight system. He did not see how the rest of the chip worked.
Today, the complexity of IT infrastructure management has reached such a state where a single person can’t tell how the whole process works without the help of a tool. Back in time, maybe the CPU was the only black box you didn’t need to know how it worked. But now, you may have deployed your entire server infrastructure in the cloud; you can’t know where it is, what hardware it runs on, or the location of your data unless you use robust discovery solutions.
You trust that it’s there and someone knows its workings. But in reality, no single person knows how all of the parts fit together, again assuming you don’t have a service mapping tool in place. So, when a problem arises, it becomes difficult to ensure security or diagnose a problem.
In this article, we’ll be exploring the complexity of IT infrastructure management for organizations that have numerous applications, databases, and multiple networks. We’ll also show how Virima’s robust capabilities can help navigate the growing complexity.
Understanding the complexity of IT infrastructure management: The larger picture
When you were in high school, there were Gateway 2000 servers. Most networks ran at 10Mbps. Unlike today’s internet, the IT environment back then hardly had any virtualization or active directory that resembles with. If you had a fair understanding of network, programming, system administration, database, and telephony, you could have felt capable of running a project on any of these things.
But right now, big organizations are utilizing a web of interconnected platforms. They handle numerous databases and reports in multiple programming languages, and their IT environment includes thousands of individual applications.
The impact of complexity in IT infrastructure management: How innovation, change and improvements efforts suffer
IT infrastructure management challenges are composed of several factors, including the difficulty of understanding the true breadth of your IT environment and how to carry out safe changes. The challenges become even greater when operating complex legacy IT infrastructure.
Even seemingly small projects quickly become difficult tasks with prolonged timeframes. Retiring one application often necessitates upstream and downstream changes. Such requirements significantly increase the cost of implementation in IT.
On top of the implementation cost, the maintenance cost of legacy software becomes increasingly more expensive as the software engineers who wrote the code retire from the workforce. Reports indicate that employers triple salaries to retain engineers with unique knowledge of legacy code bases and IT infrastructure.
Even for a two-decade-old organization, the only option to reduce complexity is through typical projects such as “rip and replace.” But these can stretch to five or more years, which creates implementation fatigue and adds more complication to reducing complexity!
With such a state of IT infrastructure management due to legacy systems, the impact is felt in innovation, change, and improvement efforts.
But isn’t there a way to optimize IT infrastructure management?
There is, and we’ll talk about it in later sections.
The growing complexity of IT infrastructure management brought by constant change
The IT industry is fast-changing. One of the well-known manifestations of this change is the regular release of new software versions to improve upon previous ones.
However, managing the integration of old and new software brings new complexity to IT management. If not properly handled, it can lead to additional problems and dent productivity.
Moreover, there’s always an inherent complexity in IT infrastructure as companies go through mergers, data migrations, and restructuring. Thus, it becomes challenging to escape the complex systems developed over the years.
To steer clear of this complexity requires you to implement well-thought-out change and streamline communication. Though change requires courage, patience, and a willingness to let go of old software, you’ll need an excellent change management approach and toolset.
Effect of complex IT infrastructure management on the resilience of systems
The complexity of IT infrastructure management affects the resilience of systems that support business services. This resilience, in turn, correlates with a system’s vulnerability to catastrophe.
You might have heard how, in 2017, the British Airways IT systems failure resulted in the cancellation of hundreds of flights and the disruption of travel plans for thousands of passengers. The inability to resume normal activity quickly was attributed to the complexity of the whole IT infrastructure management.
Entering Virima’s all-in-one platform: Create efficient IT infrastructure management processes
Virima Discovery: The foundation of efficient IT infrastructure management
Whether your entire server infrastructure is spread across the cloud or on-premise, whether you’ve inherited a lot of legacy IT infrastructure, or whether you use Software as a Service (SaaS) for all things infrastructure, the first thing for robust IT infrastructure management is accurate and comprehensive asset information.
In this regard, Virima discovery helps you build a central repository of up-to-date asset information. It scans assets across edge devices, data centers, and cloud environments. Thereby, it provides you access to comprehensive asset information spread across different IT infrastructures.
But the best thing is that Virima discovery eliminates the reliance on manual updates and imports of asset configuration data as things change.
How Virima Discovery works
From a single Virima interface, you get all the asset details your organization has across divisions, departments, and LOBs. Whether your IT environment comprises old legacy systems or is a mixture of legacy and new-age solutions, Virima’s discovery allows organizations to easily discover both on-premise assets and cloud resources spread in a multi-cloud architecture.
Image Caption: Broad coverage through Virima discovery.
It uses agentless IP-based scanning and offers an optional agent for persistent discovery of Windows systems. This broad coverage enables organizations to identify and manage thousands of physical and virtual assets across operating systems, such as Windows, Linux, Unix, and Mac.
Image Caption: Persistent asset configuration monitoring through Windows agents.
Virima Service Mapping: Get a multi-layered view of all relationships and dependencies within your IT environment
As you need to carry out upstream and downstream changes as part of your IT infrastructure management, the right understanding of relationships and dependency will decide the chances of successful implementation.
Here, Virima service mapping users all the accurate and up-to-date configuration item (CI) data to create dynamic service maps visually representing the relationships and dependencies between different assets, applications, and services. These visual dynamic maps provide a clear understanding of how various components in the IT infrastructure are interconnected and how changes to one can impact others.
Image Caption: Relationship and dependency mapping between applications and services through Virima service mapping
Moreover, the service mapping process is automated to some extent, eliminates the need for manual mapping efforts, and ensures the accuracy and currentness of the maps.
ViVID™ for Efficient IT infrastructure management in the face of constant change
One of the most obvious ways toward efficient IT infrastructure management is to modernize your IT infrastructure. This modernization may include installing a customized system built from scratch to replace the legacy systems or customizing the configuration of new off-the-shelf solutions according to your specific needs.
And all this requires change. But to ensure you’ll meet your objective, create a well-structured approach to change management and have a robust toolset.
How Virima Visual Impact Display (ViVID™) makes IT change management easy
One of the key benefits of ViVID™ is that it turns ordinary service maps into heads-up displays. So you can see near real-time data such as ITSM incidents and change records vulnerabilities from NIST NVD on the dynamic service maps.
As a result, you’ll be able to identify vital connections and dependencies as they exactly are because of recent incident response and change actions.
So ViVID offers you a visual change management tool that makes change approvals easy by quickly apprehending the potential impact of changes and anticipating the risks that those changes would pose to the IT environment.
Image Caption: ViVID for understanding change collision for a robust change management process
Moreover, ViVID also helps you deal with fewer failed changes that you might encounter. When change-led service disruptions occur, ViVID’s insights help IT managers quickly pinpoint the origin of the issues, expediting service restoration and minimizing the impact on productivity.
ViVID integration to popular ITSM platforms
As ViVID integrates with system monitoring tools and ITSM platforms like ServiceNow®, Ivanti, Cherwell, and Jira, ViVID’s overlays of all ITSM planned or completed change incidents help to avoid potentially disastrous change collisions. This way, IT teams can properly identify and engage all stakeholders in the change process, streamlining planning and execution.
Wrapping up: Virima’s all-in-one platform for navigating the increasing complexity of IT infrastructure management
As organizations face the increasing complexity of IT infrastructure, it becomes essential to have robust tools and solutions. From understanding the larger picture to dealing with constant change, the impact of complexity on innovation and resilience must be addressed.
Virima’s all-in-one platform addresses these challenges by offering tools that help you gain a deeper understanding of your IT infrastructure.
While service mapping provides a comprehensive view of relationships and dependencies, ViVID integration to ITSM platforms makes managing IT change seamless. By embracing Virima’s all-in-one platform, organizations can successfully navigate the growing complexity of IT infrastructure management and ensure the security and stability of their systems.