5 problems for IT professionals when working with infrastructure
Recently, more and more companies are rethinking their IT landscape to adapt to new realities and keep up. However, many people cannot correctly allocate hardware and software resources, which leads to downtime of business processes and unnecessary financial investments. Of course, there are many methods and services that help in working with the infrastructure - managing IT assets, IT services, configurations. But in practice, most specialists in this field still encounter a number of difficulties.
1. Difficult to get data from different sources
With the growth of the company and the expansion of the infrastructure, the number of systems from which you need to extract reliable data will inevitably increase: AD, FreeIPA, Samba, VMWare, VMM. Often IT professionals have to aggregate them manually, which significantly delays the process. Moreover, with this approach, data may be lost or duplicated. As a result, there is an incorrect picture of technological assets.
2. No data normalization
Even with a small number of sources, data identification is rarely perfect. To turn a set of disparate information about resources into detailed information about technology assets, the data must be normalized.
Otherwise, the overall picture will again not be reliable. Since the same IT resource may have different names for various reasons (for example, depending on its version or commissioning date), multiple duplications begin in the database. Such redundancy reduces performance and serves as a precondition for various anomalies.
Basically, this process occurs with the help of an algorithm using patterns or conditions. The information is compared with the recognition rules and brought to a normalized state. However, such directories are constantly degrading because templates become outdated after each update by product information providers. For a year, the degree of degradation can reach 40-45%.
3. There is no detailed picture of the relationship between devices
Without an up-to-date network diagram and information about the performance of devices, unnecessary risks arise. Broken equipment is difficult to find quickly, and it can lead to disruption of up to 15% of the computer hardware and software park at the same time. To solve the problem, specialists have to check the performance of each device and program manually. As a result, the slightest failure can lead to a long downtime of business processes.
4. Loss of control over endpoints
A complete picture of IT asset data is essential for infrastructure management. Without it, professionals lose control over endpoints: software, servers, workstations, phones, and users. As a result, it is impossible to understand who is sitting at which computer and what rights they have, which programs are updated and which are not. Therefore, you have to buy new hardware and software, instead of redistributing the existing one. Moreover, all this makes the network more vulnerable to cyber attacks.
5. Difficult to share data with corporate systems
The data already collected in a single database is used not only to analyze and optimize the IT infrastructure, but also for the correct operation of various corporate systems - for example, Help Desk, 1C: ITIL or Service Desk platforms. However, in most cases, there are no ready-made connectors for integration. You have to write them yourself, and the data is lost, and the programs may hang or not save the current changes. As a result, it becomes difficult (if not impossible) for users to work, which again leads to downtime of business processes.
All these problems lead to the fact that user tasks are solved slowly, and a large amount of manual work reduces the KPI of the IT department. Failures that occur can be difficult to quickly eliminate. Since older devices and software are easier to hack, the risk of cyber attacks increases significantly (especially if the information security department is collecting data separately from IT). Either way, the business is losing money.
How to solve these problems?
Today, according to various estimates, there are on average 17 tools per specialist to minimize the problems of working with the infrastructure. But there are more universal systems that solve them to one degree or another. The most optimal and modern way out of this situation is a platform for IT infrastructure management. Such a platform should have a flexible architecture that works in three data transfer modes: real-time, client-server and hub. Such a system provides flexibility and the ability to adapt to almost any request.
It should include as many tools as possible that solve specific tasks (from inventory to deployment). But at the same time, each of the functions must “know” everything that the other knows, and the whole system should work in a single window mode. This will solve all the identified problems.
- Such platforms are able to quickly collect information about software, hardware, devices and users from different sources. Automatically aggregate, normalize and enrich this data using a neural network, and then transfer it to the CMDB.
- The problem with endpoint control is solved by real-time monitoring. Preconfigured reports can be displayed as dynamic dashboards. The platforms also allow you to control remote workstations and provide data on IoT devices. If necessary, you can determine the geographical location and monitor their movement both in another office and in another country.
An IT infrastructure management platform keeps systems running smoothly and reduces the likelihood of business process downtime. The most reliable and up-to-date data guarantees a high level of control, which further reduces the risks of cyber threats. At the same time, you can save both on system deployment and IT infrastructure scaling.