Legacy CITS Virtualization Hardware and Software Decommissioned

Submitted by Rob Schmidt

When you get a new stereo, do you sell / give away the old one? Does anyone even get stereo systems anymore? Or, do they get a waterproof Bose blue-tooth speaker to hook to their smart phone?  But, I digress. Friday, July 17th was an eventful day for many in WashU IT. By that date, a group of dedicated workers had completed the migration of all the virtual machines (VMs) from the legacy Medical School Central IT Services (CITS) VM environment to our WashU IT private cloud offering. The team was able to retire 25 VMs and migrate 40 VMs to our private cloud, where customers will have access to more robust backup and disaster recovery capabilities.

With this migration complete, they can shut down a considerable amount of hardware: 17 host servers and 2 physical SANS, spanning our multiple data centers. We should be able to reclaim 2+ rack spaces and get the equivalent of 2+ cars off the road for 1 year.

Considering that each VM can be used by many people and contain many applications, analyzing and coordinating on 65 VMs amounts to a lot of work. Here’s a list of the kinds of efforts required for a project of this magnitude:

  • Michael Thompson was the Team Lead and Darrell Dohrman the Project Manager
  • Kevin Zenk provided his considerable expertise with the Tivoli backup processes and Hitachi SAN array
  • Michael Ahearn provided the web server and SQL Server coordination and technical expertise
  • Kevin Sleeter’s group provided coordination when the VM functioned as a file server.  They also had to perform some “magic” to account for a 2TB limitations with older VMs.
  • Ken Koch and Paul Malaway coordinated efforts and provided technical insights with Active Directory domain controllers.