We knew this time was coming, so we were prepared. And being prepared is the key element when you start a big migration project: planning. Because there are a lot of things you need to think about when you migrate from one data center to another. Michal Kolaczyk is our expert on this.
“We are in the middle of a big migration project, where we are moving our servers from the old Telecity 1 datacentre in Amsterdam to the new one.” Earlier this year Telecity announced that they would close the current datacentre, so we knew that we had to move the servers at one point. “But you can’t just pack up the racks, cables and switches and out them in the other location. You really need to plan the operation, because you cannot afford any downtime.”
Especially if, like Fusix, you provide connectivity to many other networks that rely on your service, you don’t want any downtime. So how do we avoid that? “First you need to install and test everything at the new location, while the old connections are still running. Once you are sure, you connect the ‘old’ network to the new network and test everything again. If it all works, you can reroute the old connections to the new network and then you can disconnect the old one.” It sounds simple, but it takes a lot of planning to do this. “And you need to expect the unexpected. Like not having enough cables, space or other resources at the new location. So be prepared.” The planning also helps us to do upgrades while we are migrating. That way we can plan the maintenance time needed, without disrupting the services.
Another key element is communication, says Michal. “Make sure everybody knows what is coming, what the plans are and what is needed. Not just in your own team, but also the movers that move the physical hardware, and of course the clients as well. They need to know what you are doing.”
The saying is true for many projects but especially for migrations on this scale: good planning and good communication are the key to make any migration as smooth as possible. “If planning and communication are not up to high standards, it can lead to a lot of problems.”