In a previous post, we proposed a 12-point check-list for a WAN governance project. Let's discuss here the subject that begins our whole story: What are my key applications?
We recently made a survey (*) about implementation of Autonomic Networking and Objective-based management as configured by enterprises that use Ipanema solutions. I would like to share with you some results that I believe meaningful.
The study bears on a panel of 48 large enterprises, in all industry verticals across every continent. Aggregated, it represents more than 10,000 sites, and can be reasonably considered as a fairly representative sample.
- The first outcome is about the number applications discovered and/or declared: on average, we found 69 differentiated applications per enterprise. The classification system being practically unlimited, we can consider this figure as the current level of granularity that is required by an enterprise. I must recognize that we expected a smaller figure; it gives a sense of usage diversity in organizations.
- The second outcome is about the way applications are gathered by families (we call them "User Class" in the Ipanema jargon (**)). The average number of application groups is of 15 User Classes per enterprise, with a minimum of 7 and a maximum of 33 classes per network. 15 is then the "Magic Number" for WAN governance powered by Autonomic Networking. The graph beside shows the number of enterprises according to the number of User Classes they implement, with the classical 'long tail' in such type of statistics.
- The third outcome is that neither the number of applications nor the number of User Classes depends on the network size. This time, the result was expected as the principle of Objective-based management is to drive application performance from the enterprise's application portfolio and not from its network topology.
In further posts, we will continue our story and examine how business criticality has been managed as well as the nature of the declared applications.
(*) I would like to particularly thank the Ipanema Support and Consulting team that makes this study possible.
(**) A "User Class" gathers all applications with same Business Criticality (4 levels, from TOP down to LOW) and same Type of traffic (3 options among Real-time, Transactional and Background).