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How Much Downtime Can You Afford?

Carl Ray
Senior Product Marketing Director

As an enterprise IT leader, you know all too well that patches, upgrades and IT system replacements typically lead to pain and suffering for your IT and security teams. They also result in downtime, diminished productivity and security gaps for the enterprise.

While fear of making a necessary — and inevitable — system upgrades looms large for many organizations and IT departments, continuing to use systems that have bugs, old and incompatible features, security flaws and other issues can lead to "technical debt," making it far more difficult to build in the necessary protections now and in the future. In fact, delaying necessary updates can introduce a ripple effect on other enterprise software and systems — in the end, creating even bigger IT and business challenges.

Every organization must discover the simplest and most effective path to maintaining IT systems. It's also important to understand, above all else, which patches and updates are critical and which are not. Not all systems are created equal.
Somewhere between the extremes of minor and critical upgrades lies the very real world of operating a business. Some organizations wind up hot-swapping components and code while systems are running, often resulting in unpredictable outcomes. Others cluster systems for fast failovers, a process that is somewhat complex and requires close attention.

Streamline System Changes with Converged Infrastructure

A better approach is to adopt a framework designed for upgradeability — something that's already built into Oracle Engineered Systems. For instance, on a micro scale, the right systems and tools allow the hot-swapping of code modules on the fly.  In a world where vendor claims of zero disruption are common, it's important to see beyond hype and adopt a platform that actually supports seamless patching and upgrades. Within Oracle, for example, old code is unhooked and the new code is re-hooked. The advantage? The application does not sense that any change has taken place. Oracle Ksplice takes this approach, and it has successfully handled these tasks for several years.

Of course, more complex situations sometimes arise, including when an organization encounters a bug, such as one found in widely used glibc code, which allows malicious attackers to control a DNS server. Knocking down this space code and cleaning out IT systems can become much more complicated. This requires individual harnesses for specific libraries. While Ksplice addresses this issues, virtually everyone else finds themselves patching systems. The code in question already had a harness built into the Oracle product. These issues apply to broader system changes and macro issues as well.

oracle ksplice update process

Move Beyond Fear to Maximize Performance
While there is no way to avoid constant changes to software and systems, the process doesn't have to be painful or negatively impact your day-to-day IT or business operations. With the right tools and technologies in place, an organization can move beyond fear — and beyond real-world obstacles — to embrace an IT framework that provides maximum performance and ROI at every moment of every day. Watch the video below and contact us for a demo today!

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