I was working with a new customer and showing him some of the features of Foglight for Virtualization, Enterprise Edition. I was going through the Capacity Manager section and showing him how he can use it to help manage the growth of his virtualized infrastructure when he stopped me.
He said it was nice to predict from past history; his environment does not work that way.
This intrigued me, so I probed a little further. He oversees the software development in a large software company. They custom-build applications for their customers, so the environments they need vary and are up for anywhere from two months to a year or more. His environment is very predictable because he knows what is coming, but what is coming does not follow any predictable plan. When projects come in, he knows what resources will be required for the projects, but the number of virtual machines (VMs) and the compute required can vary greatly from project to project. With so many VMs being requested and returned, it was difficult to plan for the future.
In Foglight 8.4, we released new cartridges that will more than help him out. I showed him our new Capacity Director cart. It shows you how your environment is growing and allows you to put planned changes on the graphs and recommendations. We were able to list all the projects he knows about with the amount of resources needed, and then remove them when the project was finished. He could now see what resources he will need in his variable environment. Great forecasting.
We were even able to take this a step further and configured Capacity Director to automatically build all the VMs when scheduled. One less thing he now needed to do.
In less than an hour, we had him collecting and getting better forecasting than he had even hoped for.
He had two large projects coming up. They were staggered, but did have some overlap, so he planned on purchasing some new hardware for this spike. When we put all the numbers in Capacity Director, we found that several smaller projects finished before the overlap, which gave the breathing room he needed. With this new forecasting tool, he was able to determine he was going to have a safe margin. Just barely, but a safe margin. I was happy we were able to bring order to his chaos.
Here is a great link that goes into all the Capacity Director features.
Here is a good video that gives all the details.