Migrating out of a Data Centre, key success factors summarised

Migrating an entire estate out of a Data-Center or Co-Location facility is difficult.  The  most cited reasons are usually:

~Projects exceed time, budget, migration windows

~End user disruption

~Planning phase usually induces a delay, once the complexity and inter-dependency is properly scoped

~Planning around downtime mitigation can entail a long delay in the migration

~Lack of resources

~Stakeholder conflicts or inattention

~Target operating model and platform not built, not properly understood


Process in Migrating a Data Center:

1.       Project Plan, IT Business Drivers, Budget

  • Define Project Objectives
  • Define Success Criteria
  • Infrastructure Assessment
  • Budget Requirements


2.       Discovery by SMEs (subject matter experts)

·         Set up Agile teams with Apps, Infra, Security working on the same team

·         Specific Application team with Infra and Security on board

·         Deep dive into Application Infrastructure

·         Databases, Apps, documented, understood

·         Compute, Network, Storage, documented, understood

·         Ranking of Applications, documented, rationale

·         Mapping out inter-dependencies, documented, agreed upon

·         AD, Domains, LDAP, Security, documented, understood

·         Testing and Validation plans by SMEs (based on discovery)

·         High Availability, Backup, DR plans made by SMEs


3.       Development

·         Target Model build for networking, security using Agile

·         Target Model, apps, databases, compute, storage using Agile

·         Migration ranking, planning, using Agile, deliberate ranking/assessment model

·         Migration Planning by SMEs, RACI, Approach, Tools, Techniques by App, by Database

·         Decision on VMs, vs Containers using a deliberate assessment model

·         Design Patterns to provide consistency in migration, deployment inside the migration planning

·         High Availability, Backup, DR plans tested and models are built inside the migration planning and target operational model

·         Testing and Validation plans for the Target Model

·         ITSM, Trouble Ticketing, Support Plan, Systems, Flows, RACI

·         Operational Support Plan by SMEs and RACI

·         Proof of Concept

·         End to End Design made based on Proof of Concept

·         Test, Review, Assess the End to End Model with a 2nd POC


4.       Validation

·         Extend the Proof of concept

·         Ensure limited end user impact

·         Assess networking, security

·         Assess Compute, Storage

·         Test, Re-assess application-infra dependencies

·         Test, Re-assess application, database functionality, availability

·         Test HA, DR


5.       Migration

·         Begin migrations tranche by tranche

·         Constantly review, assess

·         Have integrated ‘Agile’ teams infra, apps, security

·         Ops involved with the migration

·         Ops documented

·         Test, confirm HA, DR, Access, Usability


6.       Management

·         Project Board to monitor, assess, confirm

·         Agile updates, everything done in short sprints, assessed

·         Monitoring and reporting is transparent, done with Jira/Confluence or similar


7.       Operational support

·         Steady state support by App, Infra and Operational SMEs

·         Limit End User impact

·         ITSM and trouble-ticket systems in place, operational beforehand

·         Proactive alerts, monitoring, reporting

·         Ensure operational excellence and functionality


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