One of the EMC acquisitions that flew under the radar in 2013 was Adaptivity.
Consider an example of business applications running on top of a traditional (e.g. 2nd platform) IT infrastructure:
When running in this environment Adaptivity can perform application classification. At a very high level, for example, Adaptivity can classify applications into three buckets: sunset, enhance, and modernize:
The diagram above illustrates that Adaptivity has classified the bottom three applications as “Sunset”, meaning that an application decommissioning process is recommended. The middle row of applications has been classified as “Enhance”, meaning that the apps are a good fit for the current IT architecture and effort should be taken to optimize their operation. The top row of applications has been labeled “Modernize”, meaning that the applications are prime candidates for either a modern re-write and/or a re-deployment onto a new infrastructure.
This simple example illustrates a strategy that an enterprise can use to (a) more effectively deploy their applications, (b) optimize their current infrastructure and (c) enable the eventual move to a more modern IT infrastructure.
Before implementing these strategies, however, there is another capability that should be used to gauge the difficulty of beginning any sunset, enhance, or modernize initiatives. The capability is known as application dependency mapping. Field-based employees at my company are currently using VMware's Application Discovery Manager (ADM) to perform this capability.
ADM identifies the dependencies between all discovered applications. These dependencies dictate how difficult or easy it may be to separate applications from one another. My company's IT department lived through this difficulty as it virtualized (and separated) applications as part of a migration from a legacy Massachusetts-based data center to a state-of-the-art data center in Durham, North Carolina.
Once Adaptivity has run its classification algorithms, and ADM has identified application dependencies, there are a set of very practical steps to begin the process of transforming both the applications and the IT infrastructure.
In upcoming posts I will begin to outline these steps and start with “sunsetting” (often referred to as application decommissioning). There are new products and approaches that can sunset applications in a highly compliant way. These products and approaches have the side benefit of freeing the current IT infrastructure (and team) to better position itself for application enhancement and modernization.
I also plan to dive into the inner workings of Adaptivity and describe its benefits.
Thanks to EMC employee John Krasnick for stepping me through the benefits of Adaptivity.