Thursday, September 27, 2007

Capacity Management

We have a serious issue around capacity management, and what the options are for doing a good job in capacity management. I feel there are the following types of methodologies going in order from fewest to most.

  1. Ignore capacity and just fight the fires as they arise.
    1. Pros: Easy, no additional work involved.
    2. Cons: Unhappy customers, lots of fires, no way to budget for growth or system changes.
  2. Treat capacity as a overall metric across unrelated systems, networks, and software.
    1. Pros: Gives you a overall idea of the usage of your capacity.
    2. Cons: No actionable information, thus you don't actually fix any capacity issues.
  3. Treat capacity as alarms, where we get a message and a ticket based on a capacity being passed.
    1. Pros: Gives you actionable alarms on capacity problems.
    2. Cons: Doesn't give you any priority, or prevent the alarms from being ignored (crying wolf).
  4. Treat capacity as reports.
    1. Pros: Gives you an idea of what you must take action on.
    2. Cons: No idea when you will run out of capacity, floods email boxes with reports.
  5. Treat capacity as a statistical analysis.
    1. Pros: You can proper analyze the timeline for upgrades, hot spots, and products of importance.
    2. Cons: Requires more investment in software, and people.

We are at various maturities, but overall the idea is to get closer to number 5.