Essential Guide

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Develop a solid virtualization capacity planning strategy


The role of an IT capacity planner isn't entirely unlike that of an oracle. For all intents and purposes, both are expected to predict the future -- the only difference is that rather than prophesy the future of heroes and demigods, capacity planners prophesy the future of the data center. This remarkably less mystical -- yet no less difficult -- task entails using careful calculations to estimate space, hardware and software resources to develop a capacity planning strategy that ensures an IT organization sufficiently meets the workload demands of its end users.

Virtualization further complicates the already daunting task of devising a capacity planning strategy for the data center. Compared to traditional physical servers, virtualized servers consume more resources. Virtualization makes it easy to migrate workloads from one physical server to another, but the process of moving multiple VMs at a time can result in resource shortages. With so many moving parts, it's easy to see how an administrator might face difficulties when provisioning computing resources. It's essential that capacity planners accommodate for the additional challenges virtualization poses when predicting data center needs.

This essential guide helps capacity planners determine what to look for when putting together a comprehensive virtualization capacity planning strategy, how virtualization fits into the picture, what potential problems they might encounter and which tools they should use.

1Assess data center needs-

Create a virtualization capacity planning strategy

The benefits of a good virtualization capacity planning strategy are numerous: reduced downtime, less money spent on server and application deployment, easier disaster recovery and, of course, better overall performance. So, how should a capacity planner create such a strategy? Start by assessing the needs of your data center in terms of resource utilization as well as the needs and objectives of your business. This will give you a better idea as to where you should dedicate your time and attention. For more advice on crafting the perfect capacity planning strategy, take a look at the links included in this section.


Take stock of your environment for virtual capacity planning

To create an effective capacity planning strategy, evaluate your virtualized environment to fully anticipate its needs. Continue Reading


Best practices for IoT projects and data center capacity planning

Data center managers face a number of challenges, especially when it comes to satisfying business demands. Proper capacity planning makes life easier. Continue Reading


Right-sizing, capacity planning are keys to private cloud

Private clouds depend on resource allocation and workload consolidation to maintain peak performance levels. This means right-sizing your infrastructure and capacity planning are musts. Continue Reading


Provision resources properly to maintain VMs efficiency

One of the most important pieces of virtualization capacity planning is to provision hosts to ensure that the infrastructure has sufficient resources. Continue Reading


How to quantify virtualization performance data

You've closely monitored your environment and retrieved virtualization data -- now it's time to put those findings to good use. Continue Reading

2Threats to capacity planning-

Common virtualization capacity planning challenges

Virtualization presents a unique challenge to capacity planning because virtual servers run multiple workloads simultaneously and consume significantly more compute resources than traditional physical servers. Failing to take this into account when developing a capacity planning strategy can have serious negative consequences. Poor systems management techniques also pose a serious threat to capacity planning, and set even the best-laid plans awry. This section deals with common virtualization capacity planning challenges, how they affect resource use and performance and how to overcome them.


Virtualization throws a monkey wrench into capacity planning

Capacity planning is a tricky task on its own; it gets even more difficult when virtualization enters the mix. Here's why as well as ways to overcome this challenge. Continue Reading


Expect the unexpected with capacity planning

Chris Crosby, CEO of Compass Datacenters, discusses the challenges that the rapid evolution of data center technologies creates when planning resource use. Continue Reading


Overcome these common virtualization challenges

Virtualization can reduce some of the physical issues involved with data center management, but it has flaws, especially related to capacity planning and provisioning. Continue Reading


Ways to manage data to balance capacity

The rapid expansion of data has made data capacity a chief concern with storage. How can IT find cost-effective ways to meet data capacity requirements? Continue Reading

3Improve your strategy-

Capacity planning management, tools and best practices

Finding the right virtualization capacity planning tool is a tall order -- it has to pull data from physical and virtual servers, make predictions, understand other apps in your data center, navigate common virtualization challenges and more. Even if you find the perfect tool, your work isn't done: You now need to figure out what to do with the data received and how it can help you create a better capacity planning management system. In this section, we'll look at some popular capacity planning and performance monitoring tools and best practices, and how they improve functions in your data center.


Tools and tips to streamline mainframe system management

Capacity planning, performance monitoring and mainframe tools go a long way to help increase the efficiency of mainframe systems. Continue Reading


Put an end to virtual data center challenges with these tools

An issue like VM sprawl is bound to arise during the move to virtualization. The key is to stay one step ahead with the right management tools. Continue Reading


These popular APM tools address capacity planning

These five application performance monitoring tools can give developers an edge when planning resources. Are you using them? Continue Reading


Roll with the changes in a virtual data center

Performance monitoring and capacity planning are critical to ensure app performance. This series explores tools and best practices to optimize a data center environment and avoid performance issues. Continue Reading

4Glossary -

What are some key capacity planning terms?

An understanding of what capacity planning is and what it involves is essential to create a solid virtualization capacity planning strategy. Read up on this technology to stay in the know.

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