The Zero-Down Time DC Migration. You Can Do It, Too
Jan 15, 2015
Here’s a hypothetical situation for you. Let’s say you run a hosting company. This means that your data center is your business. And naturally you want to grow. You are addressing industry sectors that demand high-performance cloud technologies like finance, government, education, manufacturing, hi-tech and media companies. You want to differentiate yourself by offering the greatest possible flexibility and security, whilst guaranteeing data privacy for your customers. To do all this it is time to completely re-architect your data centers. And your first stop is the network. A total transformation to a faster, flatter, high-performance infrastructure.
But . . .
What do you do about your thousands of existing customers who rely on you 24/7/365? And who expect the best performance with no problems all day, every day? And who are spread across Europe and the USA? How do you transform your network – across several widespread data centers - under those conditions?
This was not a hypothetical situation for SW Hosting. This dynamic young company based in Spain was poised to grow. After analyzing the market they knew that a Juniper Networks MetaFabric Architecture was what they needed from a technical standpoint, but there were still all those questions about how to actually do it.
They turned to Juniper Networks Professional Services to provide the skills and resources to work with their own engineers towards a single goal: the success of the project. I recently talked with the primary Juniper consultant on the project, Miguel Barreiros.
“In working with SW Hosting we focused on all three phases of the networking lifecycle: Plan, Build, and Operate,” he told me. “This let us focus our efforts on the entire project, which was very important to the customer.” Miguel started his planning with a high-level design that could smoothly replace the existing network and be easy to manage and operate. He also made sure that it provided the tight security and agile flexibility required. After defining the architecture, he continued with the low-level detailed design of exactly what would connect to what, where, and how.
“What we deliver is technical expertise and excellence, supported by our experience in deployments around the world. We think about a total solution and not about individual products,” Miguel says.
The next step was planning the migration of the existing data centers to the new architecture. With thousands of customers running 24 hours a day, this had to be a non-stop migration. The planning was highly detailed, and everything was tested. And tested. And tested again. Giving SW Hosting the confidence necessary to make the move.
And when the switchover came, what happened? No one noticed. Not a single customer was affected, none even noticed. Down-time? Zero.
I have seen lots of network implementations, migrations and transformations over my many years in this business. Some went well, others less so. When I talked to Miguel he said something that I think is the real recipe for success: “We worked closely with SW Hosting’s engineers, as one single team. They understood their needs, we had deep knowledge of our solution, and together we came up with a great way for them to move their company forward.”