The University of Texas at Austin

University Data Center

Migrating "Commodity Servers" to University Data Centers

Executive Compliance Committee (ECC) - Information Resources Use and Security Policy

Last month, Gregory Fenves, Executive Vice President and Provost, and Kevin Hegarty, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, announced the change in University policy requiring all commodity IT services be either physically or virtually located within the University Data Center. The policy change applies only to commodity IT services. "Commodity" IT servers are defined as "web servers, mail servers, file servers, database servers, and directory servers" in colleges, departments, and units. This policy goes into effect September 1, 2014, to enable campus time to plan and transition. Of course, not all IT services fall into this category and exception requests can be filed with the Information Security Office. Information Resources Use and Security Policy.

University Data Centers Preparations

UDC staff members have been busy planning and preparing to assist customers with the influx of systems needing to comply with the ECC policy change. We are dedicated to making the transition as painless as possible and are happy to announce the following temporary policy changes.

Relaxed Systems Standards

UDC is temporarily relaxing the Systems Standards Policy to accept the following:

  • Tower Servers (non-rack mount) - UDC will allow tower form factor servers for a period of two years or upon hardware life-cycle refresh, whichever comes first. After this period, UDC will provide guidance on selecting appropriate hardware that is compatible with UDC infrastructure.
  • Single Power Supply - UDC can provide Micro Automatic Transfer Switches to allow redundant power connections for critical systems upon request.

Waived Co-location Fees

In order to encourage co-location to the University Data Center this spring and summer, we are waiving the fees for the remainder of the fiscal year. This will enable schools, colleges and business units to move in sooner and better plan for fees beginning in September. Any system(s) migrated as part of the compliance effort will not be billed until Sept 1, 2014. This waiver extends to both new and current co-location customers of the UDC, migrating physical servers.

Transitioning to University Data Centers

Below you will find information that will be beneficial in understanding and preparing for a migration project.

Migration Project Overview

  • Kickoff Meeting: Inventory review, requirement gathering and system interdependency mapping. Engage ITS Systems teams for expert consultation on storage and virtual machines as necessary.
  • Network Design & Verification: Customer documents network configurations in UDC supplied template with assistance from UDC network engineers. Design considerations and conflicts are resolved during the early stages of the project.
  • Customer Site Walkthrough: UDC staff perform a source site visit to plan routes, document connections and label all systems & cabling.
  • Pre-Staging: UDC staff stage all network and power cabling in the data center and configure PDU outlets.
  • Quality Assurance: UDC staff perform a QA check of source and destination sites to verify all documentation and physical preparations are correct.
  • Playbook Generation: UDC staff create a step-by-step work script for the move day migration tasks and assignments.
  • Playbook Validation:UDC Staff and Customer review the playbook and perform a dry-run of tasks to ensure accuracy.
  • Sign-Off Meeting: ITS/Customer executives and project leads review preparations and approve the plan.
  • Move Day:UDC staff coordinates with customer project leads to execute the migration according to the playbook.

Customer Preparations

  • Prepare a spreadsheet of systems to be migrated that lists the following information as column headers (Download sample spreadsheet - Move Planning Inventory):
    • Systems Name (Could be FQDN or nickname)
    • IP Address
    • Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN)
    • Network Interface Speed (1Gbps/10Gbps)
    • Interface Type (twisted pair copper/twinax/fiber)
    • System Make & Model
    • Single or Dual Power Supply
    • Power Supply Rating (Max Watts)
    • OS
    • Primary Application or Function
    • Serial Number
    • UT Asset Tag Number
    • Test or Production
    • Primary Administrator Contact
    • Secondary Administrator Contact
    • Manager Contact
  • Document interdependencies between systems (i.e. Controller/Storage, Application/Database, etc.)
  • Document current network design and configurations including VLANs, firewall rules and physical server interfaces labels (i.e. Gb01, eth0, etc.).
  • Document warranty and life cycle information
  • Gather spare hardware components for systems to be migrated
  • Document any USB license keys or other attached devices to be migrated
  • Ensure all system passwords are known and documented in a secure easily accessible location (i.e. Stache)

Timelines

The documents below are project timelines that describe migration and new installation projects.

We Can Help

Get help from an expert:

* ITS Help and Service Desk

* Call us at 512-475-9400

* Submit a help request online

We also have a walk-in service in the first floor lobby of the Flawn Academic Center (FAC). Stop by and let us help you!