Simplifying complex modernization strategies with the right tools

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App modernizationA few years ago, NASA found water on Mars and mountains on Pluto. The first ever self-driving cars hit the road across the country. And organizations were still building compute workloads with monolithic applications in their local, dedicated data centers with predefined support and upgrade cycles.

How far we’ve come since then. Companies are realizing the benefits of microservices and cloud deployments. They’re beginning to incorporate those technologies into their IT ecosystems.

Those organizations are now also realizing something else: Migrating an entire topology at once to a microservice ecosystem simply isn’t realistic. Most are adopting cloud technology in incremental steps, moving their easiest-to-move applications to the cloud first while leaving the more challenging workloads back in the data center.

This means some IT teams are working in traditional IT infrastructures, maintaining and supporting the applications running on physical servers. Other teams within the same company are supporting modern applications designed using microservices and deployed on clouds. Supporting these very different resources in tandem can be a challenging proposition, especially when another team in the organization uses Openstack as a standard for controlling the compute, network and storage across the entire organization.

Moving past application modernization complexity

Application Modernization

This is a common scenario for most companies in the process of their application modernization journeys. This incremental digital transformation can create a storm of complexity. But there are three key reasons it is necessary for companies to move forward with their application modernization journeys.

1. Reliability requirements are driving application architecture.

Containerization enables organizations to adopt modern, cloud native principles, making applications highly reliable. Microservices allow for cloud portability, improve efficiency and provide unparalleled agility.

To realize these benefits, companies need next generation tools such as IBM Microclimate, to get started. Microclimate provides end-to-end, cloud-native solutions for creating, building, testing and deploying container-based microservices. It helps developers focus on application code by automating many of the tasks that require in-depth domain knowledge. With the built-in data collectors in Microclimate, developers can see real-time changes to their code before they commit and make necessary remediation to improve performance.

2. The need for speed is driving continuous delivery.

To outpace competition and meet user expectations, applications must be updated very frequently. Cloud-native, microservice-based applications can easily be updated daily or even multiple times per day. To capitalize on the agility of this, technology teams must also adopt a DevOps and continuous delivery approach, introducing automation to test, build and deploy. This approach also enables teams to use multiple pipelines and ensure the reliability of each release.

3. Cloud flexibility is driving infrastructure automation.

The versatility of modern applications creates opportunities for huge expansion in a short period of time. IT administrators are seeing a transition from supporting just the data center to now managing hybrid environments in which traditional resources are managed alongside a multicloud software infrastructure. Even the largest, most sophisticated organizations’ data centers cannot expand quickly enough to keep up with demand, so companies are using private and public clouds to fill those needs.

IBM Cloud Automation Manager helps organizations automate provisioning by deploying and configuring infrastructure and applications across any cloud environment with workflow orchestration. They can also provide governance and control through effective, enforceable governance and intelligent insights for a security-rich, compliant IT environment.

Modernizing application monitoring

The easiest way to ensure reliability is with a simple and consistent monitoring method across hybrid cloud applications. To get ahead of issues before they reach users, teams need tools that can pinpoint troubled microservices across complex hybrid environments.

New advances in monitoring, relying on site reliability engineer (SRE) golden signals and one-hop dependency are key elements for shifting management from technology-based to service-based monitoring. This approach helps the site reliability engineer realize the value of modern application portability across hybrid clouds.

IBM Cloud App Management delivers a management solution for hybrid, multicloud applications. Designed for high-scale, highly resilient applications and crafted to support cloud operations and Kubernetes, IBM Cloud App Management supports DevOps, site reliability engineers and IT ops with app-centric monitoring of microservice-based applications.

With the aim to help the companies through their modernization journey, IBM is the only vendor providing a completely integrated tool set. IBM provides an end-to-end solution to cover every aspect of an organization’s transformational journey without forcing it to rip and replace its traditional infrastructure.

Watch this video to learn more about simplifying application monitoring.

Product Manager - Application performance management

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