As a global cloud service provider, one of the many questions we hear from customers during the planning stage is what benefits to expect from the cloud in their unique environment. Cost reduction, improved data protection, and data center consolidation are common customer goals. These goals make sense, but are often considered “table stakes” with most cloud providers. Instead, the most important question that customers should ask early is often the hardest to answer: “Is the cloud vendor I am evaluating a good fit for my use case”?
Meeting business expectations in the cloud. From the start.
Customers are smart to ask this question first. You see, the assumption that all applications and use cases can be supported by all vendors, is faulty. In fact, not all use cases are right for the cloud. And not all vendors approach each use case the same. Cloud technologies are different, networks are different, and all applications have different requirements and importance to the business. Unfortunately for many organizations, it’s only after application migration that they realize their cloud performance or cost expectations have not been met.
The reality is, it is challenging to correctly size, geographically optimize, and test and validate a cloud vendor’s resources and capabilities before the application is deployed. However, in practice this has been the only true way to know if an application will perform as needed in the cloud.
So, a few years ago we set out to address this challenge and developed a tool that could quickly and easily solve this problem. We built iland Catalyst to help iland customers accurately predict how their applications will perform in our cloud, and what it will cost. Our customers have historically started their cloud journey from a variety of different places, be it storage capacity needs, specific backup recovery requirements, DR business mandates, dev test, or production workload requirements. We needed a tool to be flexible enough to take inventory of the entire customer estate, globally, and provide analysis for their unique situation, needs, and business.
We are happy to say that iland Catalyst can do all this and more. And as you may have seen in our recent press release, we are happy to announce that iland Catalyst 2.0 is now a free download for anyone to use and easily determine if iland is right for their use case. This means that as customers are tasked by their executive team to determine if, and how, they should leverage cloud, Catalyst can help them evaluate their options with iland and answer these questions:
- How much compute, storage, and memory do I need in the cloud? How do I avoid over-provisioning and under-provisioning?
- Will my current network be sufficient to support my application?
- Which global location is best for my performance needs?
- How much will it cost?
- What considerations or challenges do I need to overcome before I migrate to the cloud?
- How do I ensure my workloads are compatible in your cloud environment?
- Can I achieve my replication and migration goals (i.e. RTO and seeding times)
Catalyst: Quickly aggregate, normalize, and analyze data
iland Catalyst is a lightweight software tool that can quickly take inventory of a global environment through VMware vCenter. Customers can use the tool to drag and drop or select individual workloads, resource pools, or VM groups for their use case:
The tool will calculate the resources required to appropriately size the environment based on a variety of different models and unique customer environment data, including the network. For example, what size should my cloud backup environment be for my specific change rates and retention policies (daily, weekly, monthly, etc)? What would the initial seed time be? What will my incremental push times be?
Customers can test their model against any one of our nine global data centers to determine the best possible fit for their use case. This helps validate assumptions right up front and ensure moving to the cloud is feasible. All of this information is included in a comprehensive report provided directly to the customer.
Meeting expectations in the cloud starts with addressing challenges early
For customers moving to the cloud, it helps to address challenges early to reduce the risk of missing performance, cost, or other business expectations. iland Catalyst helps with this. For example, a customer wanting to consolidate or eliminate a secondary data center using a cloud service provider could be facing both technical and cost challenges, depending on their application needs. If the customer has a very large dataset, and a very basic network, it may take months or more to move the data. In this case, iland Catalyst reports this information, enabling the customer to either improve the network, or decrease the size of the dataset.
The cost example is similar. With Catalyst, and the help of the iland team, we can give customers an accurate cost model that enables them to avoid unexpected expenses, and set appropriate business expectations right up front. In both cases, obstacles avoided, expectations met.
iland and Catalyst – Long standing focus on IT visibility
We believe iland Catalyst is just another way we Simplify the Journey to the Cloud. If you follow iland, you already know that we built our own cloud platform using VMware, and have been partnering with VMware for over a decade. Our goal from the beginning was simple – provide our customers with complete performance visibility, regardless of where they are deployed. Hand in hand with performance transparency is cost transparency. Our simple pricing model makes the work of forecasting cloud costs over time a straightforward exercise.
Now with Catalyst 2.0, we can take visibility to another level for customer strategy and planning, key steps in the cloud journey that (if done early and accurately) can significantly improve the desired end result: The right cloud, for your business.
Download Catalyst here: https://www.iland.com/iland-catalyst/
Installation/Prerequisites here: https://success.iland.com/docs/catalyst/installation-and-configuration-guide