Industry Perspective: Power Protection Key To Virtual, Cloud Deployments
By Gennifer Biggs, Business Solutions magazine.
With the swirl of excitement around virtualization, cloud, and managed services the last year or so, it is easy to get pulled into the vortex of new, shiny technology and overlook the workhorse elements of an IT network. Bill Allen, marketing director for Para Systems, maker of Minuteman uninterruptible power systems (UPSs), offers some advice for those solutions providers designing and deploying virtual and cloud solutions. "Providers must remember that power protection is a key part of business continuity, which is a common reason end users are looking to the cloud," says Allen. He outlines three scenarios in which solutions providers may forget to consider power protection and management — when they are offering cloud-based solutions through vendors, when they are supporting hybrid cloud deployments, and when and if they choose to build their own private cloud offering.
When it comes to both offering your own private cloud solution or partnering with a cloud solution vendor, Allen stresses that solutions providers must fully understand the need for redundant power protection for the data centers supporting the cloud deployments. But don't think the only point of failure is in the cloud. While you must validate any cloud solution provider's business continuity plan and specifically ask about power management, don't get lazy when it comes to your customer's environment. "MSPs start to feel comfortable because someone else is handling the infrastructure in the cloud, and it becomes easy to overlook day-to-day issues such as battery monitoring and maintenance and power protection upgrades," cautions Allen. If an MSP is preparing to move portions of a customer's infrastructure to the cloud, Allen also suggests that the provider talk with the customer about parameters for on-site power protection, including extended run time on battery packs.