There are times in everyone’s professional life when we just have to step back, shake our head and mutter under our breath, “Why do we keep doing it this way?”
Server administrators who rely on manual processes may experience this moment more often than most. Keeping up with a steady stream of change requests — some might describe it as a fire hose — with the relentless series of tasks to provision, patch, update and upgrade. Eventually, it saps productivity and errors creep in — and that just leads to more work troubleshooting.
Sound familiar? Here are five signs it’s high time to rethink how you administer servers.
1. You’re working in the middle of the night
Maintenance windows are shrinking, and it’s costing you sleep. To avoid disruption of business services, maintenance tasks are often scheduled between midnight and 5 a.m. — great for the business, terrible for server admins.
2. You’re constantly disabling and re-enabling monitoring and load-balancing tools
Maybe this sounds familiar: Prior to making changes, you manually perform checks of the systems, and then disable monitoring and load-balancing tools. Only then can you manually execute, check, and validate the changes. To complete the process, you have to then manually reset the monitoring and load balancing tools. Of course, if things didn’t go well, you have to back out all of the changes and restart the entire process.
3. You’re using different tools for different tasks
How many systems do you and your colleagues have to log into and out of in order to make changes? The more you’ve got, the more likely shortcuts will be taken — it’s just human nature — and that’s when errors and noncompliance start to creep in.
4. Changes don’t always get logged properly
Admins are just too busy with other, more pressing work to log into the change-record system and fill out electronic versions of paperwork. As a result, your IT organization has an incomplete record of server upgrades, patches, and compliance with policies. Not good.
5. Errors result in IT incidents
The fallout from error-prone manual processes is that just about any change can bring unintended consequences — usually in the form of IT incidents. Too often these lead to IT engineers and operations managers getting late-night phone calls to come into the data center to help out with troubleshooting. And then even more people in IT are losing sleep.
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Arm yourself with new insights on managing change within your dynamic data center. Download this toolkit today and learn how you can free yourself from errors, risks and save yourself from manual tasks. It is time to take control of the situation.
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Nimish Shelat is currently focused on Datacenter Automation and IT Process Automation solutions. Shelat strives to help customers, traditional IT and Cloud based IT, transform to Service Centric model.
The scope of these solutions spans across server, network, database and middleware infrastructure. The solutions are optimized for tasks like provisioning, patching, compliance, remediation and processes like Self-healing Incidence Remediation and Rapid Service Fulfilment, Change Management and Disaster Recovery.
Shelat has 23 years of experience in IT, 20 of these have been at HP spanning across networking, printing , storage and enterprise software businesses. Prior to his current role as a Manager of Product Marketing and Technical Marketing, Shelat has held positions as Software Sales Specialist, Product Manager, Business Strategist, Project Manager and Programmer Analyst.
Shelat has a B.S in Computer Science. He has earned his MBA from University of California, Davis with a focus on Marketing and Finance.