Skip to main content

SOA +

Those were the days when we as Architects have to put effort on planning deployment architecture. Usually, in a typical System Architecture Definition document, ‘Physical View’ or ‘Deployment View’ will be one of the 4+ 1 views. Arriving at deployment architecture with the exact no. of infrastructure components like Servers, SANs, routers & switches, networks capable of handling a pre-defined bandwidth etc requires a series of activities that include capacity planning exercise, stress testing, load profiling analysis etc.

‘Application Agility’ is the driver behind many SOA and BPM initiatives. Applications were architected based on Service Oriented Architecture to respond to the changes in business rules or business processes because of market situations & regulatory compliance requirements, But ‘Application Agility’ will not alone provide true agility. Change is not only confined to business process / rules. Another dimension is ‘Volume’. Suddenly there can be a spike in no. of users buying products or browsing a web application. That type of change will pose a different challenge. An application architected based on SOA cannot respond to that type of change, unless it is deployed on appropriate infrastructure. That too, if the volume increase is beyond the estimated numbers that are considered during capacity planning exercise, then application will tumble. So, if there is a mistake happened in the capacity planning exercise or if the volumes are under estimated, and then there will be a business breakdown. Unless we have a capability where infrastructure components will be available even when the application faces unexpected demand so that it will survive under such peak loads, we cannot avoid applications breakdowns. That capability can be called ‘Infrastructure Agility’, where infrastructure will be available on demand.

With the advent of ‘Cloud computing’,   Infrastructure Agility can be easily achieved. Like SOA, Cloud computing achieved top buzzword status. In Aug’09, search for “cloud computing” returned 92 million hits!  In the context of cloud computing, the activities like capacity planning or even the role ‘Infrastructure Architect’ may cease to exist!

To assess an enterprise’s maturity in terms of SOA, we have many SOA maturity models provided by the product / platform / IT service vendors like IBM, Sonic, Pega, Infosys and Collabera. The highest level indicates that enterprise’s services are optimized and are well suited for partner integration. In the light of availability of cloud computing, one more level can be added which would indicate about enterprise’s capability in terms of deploying services in a cloud environment and leverage its benefits. They can be marked ‘SOA+’.

There are many vendors playing in the cloud computing arena: Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Akamai, Rackspace, Enki, Terremark etc.

Beauty of Microsoft’s Windows Azure is its capability to leverage existing expertise of .Net folks on Visual Studio. There is no any extra learning curve for the guys who know to do development based on visual studio. They can leverage their existing skills to develop cloud aware applications & services. This makes Windows Azure more attractive both from developers’ perspective and also from enterprises perspective.

Let us hope to have more ‘Windows Azure’ days.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Lambda Architecture on Microsoft Azure

Gone are those days when Enterprises will wait for hours and days to look at the dashboards based on the old, stale data. In this fast world of BYOD, fitness gears and flooding of other devices, it is becoming super important  to derive out “actionable” information from huge volume of data / noise that is generated from these devices or any other data sources and act proactively on them  in real-time, to stay competitive.

At the same time, the need for having dashboards and other analytical capabilities based on the quality, cleansed, processed data still very much exists.

With the emergence of more data types and need to handle huge volume, shift is happening from the conventional data warehouse practice to cloud based data processing & management capabilities where high volume batch processing is possible at the optimized cost. Business scenarios demanding the need to process the data in real-time   More

SharePoint 2013 Architectural Trade-Offs

When planning for deploying SharePoint 2013 based Enterprise workloads, it should be done with the consideration / awareness of impact of various architectural decisions what we make. As SharePoint 2013 is a flexible platform providing lots of options in terms of configuration of the existing OOB features and development of custom development solutions to address specific business functional needs, care should be taken when making a particular decision and its impact on overall solution. Even though SharePoint is a matured product, the effectiveness of various business capabilities such as Enterprise Social, Enterprise Search, BI, Document Management, Web Content Management, and Enterprise Content Management that will be delivered based on it, in terms of addressing the business requirements depends on architecture planning. Effectiveness here means performance, security, up-time and other architectural qualities like Scalability, Reliability etc. more ...

Heterogeneous Cloud Integration

Heterogeneous integration is common scenario in the Enterprises where their IT portfolio is based on heterogeneous platforms. Various solution approaches such as message broker, messaging middleware, SOA – service based integration were employed to address heterogeneous integration challenges.

These solution approaches were good when the integration happens on premise, with in the data centers of an Enterprise. Problem here is non-availability of “elasticity”.

With the Enterprises started leveraging cloud platforms extensively for various solution aspects such as elastic computing, storage, it opens new capabilities that can be leveraged for heterogeneous integration. Also, similar to existing on premise scenario, Enterprises are also leveraging multiple cloud platforms to address their business needs. This scenario will pose same integration challenges as those that were faced within on premise datacenters

Within datacenters / on premise, integration products were expected to comply wi…