Myth Buster: Changing Your HA/DR Software Is Not Hard Work!
November 9, 2022 Ash Giddings
With inflation putting an added squeeze on IT spend, now is the right time to look at potential HA/DR alternatives. But, given its importance, you need to ensure that you are improving your resilience, and not trading off functionality, performance, and support to make savings.
Logical replication, for high availability and disaster recovery, has been the “go-to” technology for many years, and is still very much the leading approach within the IBM i community.
Nervousness about what costs, implementation effort and trade-offs may be required to change HA/DR solutions, means that many organizations simply rollover the status quo. In doing so they continue to pay penal annual maintenance fees, accept mediocre support and work around performance “challenges” without exploring the reality of modern alternatives.
For some, their lack of information means that the mere possibility of change to their organization’s HA/DR environment is enough to send them into a cold sweat. The great news is that improved technical and cost performance is relatively straight forward to achieve, and it can be delivered with minimal risk or implementation workload.
Maxava prides itself in competitive swap outs for products such as MIMIX, QuickEDD, iTERA, Robot HA, and iCluster. In fact, Maxava have developed migration tools that helps migrate customers from the major legacy environments to Maxava HA, speeding up and simplifying migrations dramatically. Migrations begin with the running of a Maxava Technical Discovery utility which provides a detailed overview of the system, including how it’s currently protected, the size of databases, the makeup of IFS and QDLS along with any MQ configurations – and any anomalies! The Maxava Implementation Tool is then used to import an array of existing replication settings into Maxava HA Configuration Templates, before creating equivalent Maxava HA Configurations.
For those considering a replacement, there is no need to wait until your current maintenance expires before moving to Maxava HA. Maxava offers a “maintenance holiday,” which means you don’t start paying for Maxava maintenance until your legacy product maintenance expires. So there is no double payment. This overlap period provides ample time to view a demo, run a proof of concept and comfortably migrate to Maxava HA, via a tried and proven process before your current software maintenance expires.
As an example, this approach has been taken recently by two large IBM shops based in the United States. Both companies successfully migrated large, complex MIMIX environments to Maxava HA with minimal stress. . . . and maximum benefit.
Some of the technical questions relating to Maxava HA, as compared to its competitors, are considered below.
- Technically, unlike many of its competitors, Maxava is not fully dependent on the IBM i Audit Journal (QAUDJRN). Maxava have opted for a different approach, avoiding the need for core jobs to be active on the source server. Maxava uses an innovative, command intercept feature, which has been designed to minimize the resource required on the source server. With Maxava HA, most of the processing takes place on the target server, minimizing additional workload on production environments.
- Built on remote journaling, an intrinsic part of the operating system, Maxava HA has been designed to have a small, efficient, footprint that is highly suited to the most demanding environments with the largest of transaction volumes.
- Performance is further enhanced by multi-threaded, IFS processing within the Maxava HA product.
- Real-time, in-flight, data consistency checking is also part of the solution, ensuring source and target synchronization. Any exceptions identified are flagged for remediation, much of which is handled by self-healing automation, without the need for system administrator intervention.
- Flexible auditing allows customers to verify what is important to them at a chosen frequency. Audits can be run for a given configuration, library, object, generic list of named objects, or by object type, and can run in reporting only or full fix modes.
- Simulated role swap functionality is provided. For many this is often the first step in the road to regular full role swap testing. Technical support for both simulated and full role swap testing is available from Maxava’s professional services team.
- The cloud is an increasingly popular option for those looking to take advantage of consumption-based pricing and to eliminate the need to pay for hardware and software fees individually. Maxava HA provides fast and reliable real-time IBM i replication to the cloud, even in those environments that are already running competitive solutions. Maxava has a long-standing pedigree in working with both Managed Server Providers operating their own Power-based clouds and other public cloud offerings such as Skytap and IBM’s Power Virtual Server.
- Maxava Migrate Live services support customers when they need to upgrade their IBM i environment, or migrate to a new system (either on-premise or in the cloud) without downtime.
- Maxava’s replication technologies are a quick and dependable way to enable data to be copied to a new system while keeping it synchronized in real-time.
- Maxava has a large network of partners globally, many of whom provide first level software support. Backing up our Level 1 support, Maxava offers 24×7 “lab support” with its own fully qualified and highly experienced personnel in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Japan.
You may have made a great decision in terms of your IBM i HA/DR solution in the past. It is time for another great decision.
Call Maxava today to find out how you can upgrade your HA/DR environment and get a fair deal for your organization.
Ash Giddings is a product manager at Maxava and an IBM Champion 2022.
This content is sponsored by Maxava.