Home Applications IT’s Next Headache: Dealing with Software Sprawl

IT’s Next Headache: Dealing with Software Sprawl

0
0

Written by: Lisa Hammond, Centrix Software

IT is a very cyclical business. Just as tomorrow’s next big thing becomes yesterday’s technology, so the problems that IT encounters continue to have a familiar feel to them. How we deal with the recurring IT management and deployment issues is important. Instead of continuing to follow conventional wisdom around areas such as application delivery and desktop management, we have to break the cycle and rethink our approach for the future of IT.
 
A classic case of old technology meeting a new problem is virtualization: taking an idea that has its roots in the mainframe and applying it to the problem of x86-based servers, which had over the years mushroomed to be a huge part of IT investment and planning. Instead of running lots of individual machines that were idle for a large amount of the time, virtualization allowed more workloads to be run on a smaller number of physical boxes. This not only reduced spending on hardware, but also brought other benefits such as better levels of availability for applications and easier disaster recovery.
 
However, virtualization has its own problems: because it makes deploying applications easier and faster, the number of virtual machines within a company’s infrastructure can grow extremely quickly. This can lead to the problem of software sprawl, where an organization has too many application instances deployed.
 
This is a big problem within virtualization deployments, as IT often does not figure this into the forecasting and costing of projects. With virtualization being an easy option, it is possible to use up the allotted resources far quicker than was anticipated, skewing any return on investment calculations and either making the ROI negligible, or potentially costing the company more in order to achieve the estimated benefits.
 
This can cover the whole of an organization’s IT, not just its virtualized resources. Too often, applications can be bought and paid for, but not used. The sheer volume of software that sits on the desktop and is not used can be shocking, with anything up to 40 per cent of applications not being used at all. This represents a massive headache for IT, as these resources demand management and patching, but deliver nothing in return.
 
In this environment, software sprawl and virtualization represents a good example of a useful technology being subverted by old IT thinking. A lot of this is due to the management model that is employed, based on initial estimations and capital outlay rather than “real world data” from the organization. This is a very static approach that does not reflect the variable nature of most businesses, as users’ requirements change or different trends start to develop mid-way through a project.
 
While most large organizations may have asset management or compliance solutions in place, these also suffer from thinking too statically about the resources that they cover. The sheer variety of ways that an application can get to a user, from locally installed applications on the desktop through to centrally hosted client-server apps, web-based services and virtualized applications, also makes this approach to planning more difficult.
 
What is required instead is the ability to model how the company really works with its IT assets, from the end-user population to the level of business operations and into the IT infrastructure itself. This approach gives a better overview of how assets are actually being used, rather than how IT thinks they will be taken up.
 
Taken further, this rolling approach to metering and monitoring what IT resources are used can show up trends in user behavior that can lead to cost savings: if an application is being used by fewer members of staff than was originally planned, then the support and maintenance costs can be reduced or a different license method can be brought in. This can free up budget, and make existing IT resources work much harder over time.
 
By looking at user behavior and how they are currently working, IT can decide where resources can be best delivered from and what platforms should be in place to support the organization going forward – rather than sticking to the same approach that the IT market has developed in the past. This model, based on IT intelligence and monitoring real world usage, can deliver much better results to the business over the longer term. With the advent of virtualization and cloud, IT can deliver greater flexibility and provide a way of avoiding the mistakes of the past.
 
Note: for information about the authors company, Centrix, please visit their website here: http://www.centrixsoftware.com/
 
  
Categories:
DABCC DABCC.com, the world leader in sharing the finest Virtualization & Cloud news and support resources. #Citrix, #VMware, #Microsoft, #Mobility and much more! Brought to you by @douglasabrown & team!

Share your view, leave a comment below:

Featured Resources:

Related Articles:

| LATEST FEATURED RESOURCES

White Papers

    ‘All You Need to Know About Microsoft Windows Nano Server’ Veeam White Paper

    Now updated for Windows Server 2016 GA release! You probably heard about Windows Nano Server already … but what is it exactly, and how do you get started with it? What value will it bring to your environment? Nano Server is a headless, 64-bit only deployment option for Windows Server 2016. Microsoft created this component specifically with […]

    Downloads

      Download Commvault VM Backup and Recovery: end-to-end VM backup, recovery and cloud management

      Commvault’s ability to provide end-to-end VM backup, recovery and cloud management creates a significantly better way to build, protect and optimize VMs throughout their lifecycle. Our best-in-class software for VM backup, recovery and cloud management delivers a number of significant benefits, including: VM recovery with live recovery options; backup to and in the cloud; custom-fit […]

      On-Demand Webinars

        Proactive Management of Citrix End User Experience in a Hybrid IT Environment – On-Demand Webinar

        Goliath Technologies Citrix Ready verified products help organizations proactively manage their Citrix environments, whether on-premise or in the cloud. In this webinar, you will hear from Citrix Virtualization Experts how Goliath solutions can confirm that Citrix applications and desktops are available prior to end users logging on to ensure a seamless end user experience. You […]

        Latest Videos

          Microsoft Ignite Session Video: Ask Me Anything: Michael Niehaus on Windows 10 management, deployment and more

          Microsoft Ignite Session: THR2242 Moving to Windows 10 and have questions? Join Michael Niehaus for answers to your questions about Windows 10 deployment options, how to think about the Windows as a Service model in a nutshell and the tools you can use to monitor and manage all aspects in Windows. This video is from […]

          Views All IT News on DABCC.com
          Views All IT Videos on DABCC.com
          Win a Tesla P100D

          Visit Our Sponsors

          Close