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The next big hassle: SOAs will pose bigger management problems than power and cooling

If it’s not one thing, it’s another. Today, it’s data centers’ power and cooling hassles. Tomorrow, according to researcher Jerry Murphy, “your next big problem will be managing your service-oriented architectures (SOAs).” Murphy, senior vice president and service director for Robert Francis Group, thinks out-of-control SOAs could be a bigger problem than power and cooling.

Murphy advises IT managers to get control of their SOAs today, or else your “SOAs will have gaping huge security holes through which you could drive a truck.”

Here at the the Server Blade Summit in Anaheim, Calif., the main talking points are blades and virtualization; but, in a session on proactive data center management, Murphy looked beyond immediate problems of power and cooling on blades to a future when, he predicts, a service glut will cause similar problems as those caused by server proliferation.

“Services are even harder to track than servers. They’re dynamic and flexible, but also complex. It’s harder to find out why a service fails.”

SOAs are a blessing and a curse, according to Murphy. They offer reusable code and better integration, in addition to agility in moving services as needed. But that agility makes it hard to predict where services will be moved to.

“SOA design is focused from the top-down, and infrastructure is built from the bottom up,” Murphy said. To gain better control, IT managers need to take SOAs’ top-down design and integrate it with bottom-up modeling tools. Also, he said to be conservative on capacity requirements and proactive with ongoing performance monitoring at different tiers in the infrastructure.

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