Technical fact 5: Assisting a data center migration

27-jul-2021 13:07:45

Incredible progress has been made by technology in the last couple of years. The future of technology is overwhelming for some, while it can be exciting for others. We have put together some interesting and surprising facts about tech! You might be surprised and amused by what we've discovered. Time to talk about data center migration in our series of technical facts.

WautWaut Bartels: "Don't you want your disaster recovery to be up and running all the time?"


What problems did we face during the monitoring of the data center?

In this specific case, we delivered some of our managed ICT services (monitoring,...) for a customer. His production environment was located in a data center of his own, the backup- and disaster recovery part in a data center of another IT partner. This is not a problem, because it is not a requirement to have your devices settled in a rack that we manage before you can rely on our managed ICT services.

Core ICT Data center Migration IT infrastructure Managed services 2But during the execution of these services, we monitored some major incidents in the data center of the IT partner. First of all, we noticed several power failures. Ok, initially that’s not weird and these issues can happen all the time. But it took place on both feeds and when it happens a couple of times in a few months, then it is time to take action.

Ok, what else?

Well, the other issue was that Argonite gas was being blown under high pressure (300 bar) into the room. This caused a problem with all the HDD disks in the room. The SSD’s didn’t have any issues. Why? Because they don’t have moving parts and are less fragile than HDD’s.

So unfortunately we came to the conclusion that human error caused these failures in the data center.

Waut's approach with managed ICT services:

The good part about this story is that they “only” allocated the Disaster recovery part in that data center, which means that production was up and running all the time. Don’t you want your disaster recovery to be up and running all the time? So when problems occur, disaster recovery can function properly and you don’t have to think about when the next power failure will happen, or Argonite gas will get blown into the room. (PS. If you’re in a room where Argonite gas is blown into, get out ASAP. Don’t think about anything else. Just move your ass to the exit ASAP. Argon will reduce the oxygen in the room. And like everybody knows, we need oxygen to be alive😉).

Our customer contacted us and asked us what we could do to help him in order to get to a stable backup and DR environment. We were glad he did because it’s difficult to monitor an IT environment where you have zero impact on what’s going on. Our customer told us he wanted to end his contract with the data center of the other IT partner and wanted to rely on our Managed ICT Services and on our partner NetLeaf for their network environment.

Core ICT Data center Migration IT infrastructure Managed servicesWe suggested moving their disaster recovery to another data center where we also have some gear stacked in a rack and to move production to a data center in Antwerp, where we have our own data center infrastructure. In the case of calamities, we have full access to both data centers which results in improved reaction/solution time.

We created a migration plan and had several preparation meetings with all involved stakeholders to ensure everybody was up to speed and knew exactly what, when, and why things needed to be done and who would execute these. It is better to be safe than sorry!

NetLeaf started with implementing the network connection for the new racks to the current production site. Parallel we installed new hardware so we could seed all the production VM’s to the new hardware. At the time of the cutover, our customer was surprised about how fast and how well things were going. Not only VM’s were migrated, but also Nutanix Files, Citrix, etc.

The day after the virtual migration NetLeaf migrated all network parts, and we did the same for the servers and storage. The weekend after the migration, we migrated disaster recovery. During this migration, all VM’s that needed to stay online were being migrated. Disaster recovery migration was “lift and shift, plug and play”.

It’s safe to say this was a successful project. We have a happy customer who doesn’t need to worry about the data center where his hardware is allocated anymore. And we are proud to have another happy customer😉.

Thanks for reading! If you consider Managed ICT Services, or network or data center migration, don’t hesitate to contact us! We are happy to brainstorm with you about your project.

Do you need more information about this topic or maybe you can't solve another IT problem on your own? Please reach out, we will help you! 

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