ViewsLetter(SM) on Provisioning

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ViewsLetter on Provisioning         23 Dec 2005           #49

Provisioning automation--from chips to the business layer.


By William Flanagan, Editor

The previous issue looked at COntinuity of OPerations (COOP; also Continuity Of Operations Plan), and how it could benefit from self-provisioned services. That was a way to stretch the "provisioning" tent to cover what is becoming a more interesting space: disaster recover (DR) and COOP. Reflecting on the purpose of the ViewsLetter, we've concluded that the time is right to follow this increasing interest in COOP and DR.

As a result, we're replacing the "on Provisioning" in the title with "on IT and Networking." This change widens the scope to embrace a wider variety of topics. First up will be availability of Information Technology (IT) services and networks. That's quite a broad field, so we'll take it in small bites.

The drivers behind this interest include, in a few cases, a mandate in law. Most cases, without the force of law, find prudence requires preparation for disaster: fire, flood, storm, attack, etc. Your insurance company may pressure you to anticipate disasters, so you will be prepared to stay in business and keep paying premiums (actually, to reduce your potential losses). As many firms in New Orleans learned, if you don't prepare by Friday, maybe you can't come in on Monday.

Our overarching view will be that DR is tightly coupled with COOP. Based on recent work with a major client, the evidence says that IT operations, like your vegetables, should be organically grown. That is, there is only one IT infrastructure, so when it deploys or upgrades, the best way to design it is to ensure that every step moves toward the ultimate goal of survivability and continuity--in other words, high availability.

We'll get into more detail next time. Which won't be as long as since last time.

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