Server Migration: Reduce Downtime and Risk Avoidance

We all know this: Solution A is hosted on Server 1, but the reliability of Server 1 may be problematic for some reason. This can cause a server to fail, update delays, or require virtualization to conserve resources -- just a few of the many legitimate reasons for migrating to Server 2. The challenge for users is to complete the server migration without losing the functionality and resources needed for Solution A or causing excessive downtime to incur user complaints about the IT department.

So when you are careful to implement the migration process and are not willing to risk losing the entire system, how do you deal with this dilemma? How do you meet the demanding requirements of users for zero downtime? Here are five tips to help you avoid these risks.

Tip 1: Understanding the Dependencies Between Systems

While IT staff may be reluctant to admit this, some employees may not fully understand a solution in an established migration strategy. How does it work? Take Exchange Server as an example. Changing to Exchange Server can be done in several ways, from the simple migration of a single user to a third-party solution (if necessary) from the simple migration of an entire mailbox to a new domain.

The challenge is that this migration will impact systems such as Good Technologies Services, BlackBerry Enterprise Server, Lync and Mobile Technology Suite to Exchange (Outlook Web Access/App, Outlook Anywhere and ActiveSync) locally. . Unlike the approach that takes these ecosystem solutions into account during the email server migration process, you can export all mobile users very quickly. But you can't fully understand all the peripheral systems, and your target migration system may rely on these peripheral systems or depend on each other, so that you fall into the nightmare of real migration.

Tip 2: Know what is necessary to migrate

A set of solutions consists of one or more components that involve one or more servers or hardware resources. The right steps in the migration process ensure that you first understand how the solution works and how much of the migration portion will be in the migrated system before starting the actual migration. Fax servers are the best example of this type of solution, because many businesses need physical fax cards to ensure proper operation. If you don't make sure your fax card is compatible with the new hardware/virtualization platform you are trying to migrate, then the best migration plan will be compromised.

Tip 3: Understand what should be migrated

Once you have calculated the components that must be migrated from the current platform, you should thoroughly analyze the components you may need to migrate or do not need to migrate. There are always some system components that don't need to be migrated to the new platform, but it may be necessary to migrate in order to minimize the possibility and complexity of downtime.

For example, Windows system status information may require suitable tools to migrate from one hardware platform to another. If this information can be migrated, the complexity of the new server configuration can be greatly reduced, at least from the perspective of Windows systems and software.

Tip 4: Set expectations and stick to the target

Users want to achieve a downtime migration. But the unfortunate fact is that this dream of zero downtime is usually impossible in a real migration world. Even if there is no visible downtime when implementing a physical migration (such as migrating emails in Exchange or Notes), you still need to give your employees some breathing space to deal with unexpected emergencies. Migrating system status information and binary, carefully planning and doing everything ahead of the migration can minimize the possibility of downtime. However, eliminating downtime in all major hardware migrations is just a matter of expectations and can be difficult to achieve.

Set a reasonable number of downtimes to ensure that everyone from IT staff to users knows when downtime may occur and how long it will take. If this downtime is not acceptable to the user, explain why the reason must be done and the catastrophic consequences that may result from the system.

Tip 5: Get the tools you need

Migration often leads to unexpected results due to lack of understanding of the rules. An example: Many tools that migrate from a local physical machine to a virtual machine require data to remain static during the migration process (for database administrators only). For SQL or a server like this, this means that the database must be offline during the migration process because of the major risk of data loss in the process. The tool that the physical machine migrates to the virtual machine is also a one-way migration from the physical server to the virtual machine. This is a limitation on the operation. If your migration is only feasible from physical to virtual machines, it is not helpful if you try to migrate to another physical machine. If you find this problem after the migration is not helpful, the application software will not reach your expected state in the new environment.

Choose a tool library for your needs - the typical approach is to combine local tools with third-party tools to ensure that you can safely perform the migration and follow the plan. Using these five hints together ensures that you don't miss that point, and you can migrate to the new platform with minimal downtime when implementing the migration.

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