Network Computing is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Hitting the Script Limit

There's the old quip about the dog and its ability to walk on its hind legs: While the dog can accomplish the task, the results arent pretty. Not so different is the outcome when it comes to running data centers with traditional scripting languages. Once again, the result is not so pretty, particularly when managing complex IT tasks, like asset tracking, security compliance, multi-system patch management, server provisioning, and failover.

Yet, as you probably know, almost every data center is managed using (pick your poison) PERL, Python, or PHP scripts as the primary automation tool to drive infrastructure management best practices. Individual IT personnel tend to have their favorite custom scripts that they have created, which means that the best practice, in effect, is proprietary to them and not a part of the corporate memory. Which means: When Earl the IT guy goes to lunch, so too goes the best practice with him and his scripts – out the door.

As data centers become increasingly heterogeneous, on-demand computing models begin to take hold, and virtualization of compute, storage, and networking resources is continuing its move from missionary to mission-critical. There is a serious need for more sophisticated approaches to data center automation.

This is particularly obvious when contemplating recurring management tasks, such as patch management. Firms have to do patch management over and over again, and it can be challenging because it has to be done to a variety of different pieces of hardware and operating systems.

Tasks can also vary greatly based on the type of event. For example, a system failure will generate a different response based on whether the application runs on a single system or on multiple systems.

  • 1