This post discusses how you can save up to 50% when you next renew your Microsoft SQL Server platform. The traditional process of renewing or migrating your data platform will not lead to remarkable savings. I explore the best time to optimize your SQL Server platform and take advantage of a better method of renewal and save up to 50% in server and licensing costs.
The database platform renewal is typically driven by a clear technical reason. Some of the common reasons are:
- Outdated server hardware
Your hardware is reaching the end of its lifecycle; it is troublesome to manage or not performing at its usual standard. This is a natural part of a three-five year cycle. In this case, old servers must be replaced with new ones.
Outdated SQL Server software
Your SQL Server version needs upgrading. It’s good practice to update the SQL Servers into the latest available software version whenever feasible. The newest application software may also require the SQL Server version update. Or at least when the SQL Server version is reaching the end of support by Microsoft, it is time to act.
Change in Data center strategy
At some point in time, a business must make the strategic decision to modernize its infrastructure. Increasingly, companies are migrating their on-premise infrastructure, including database platform and SQL Servers into a cloud, such as Microsoft Azure. In doing so, all those on-premises servers will have to be replaced.
- Change of service provider
Many companies outsource their operations to a managed service provider. When the company decides to change their service provider, the data platform also needs to be moved from the hosted data center of the original service provider to the new one.
When a renewal project is approaching, the IT infrastructure team or a service provider is asked to update the old SQL Servers. But when following the traditional route, only minimal changes are made; an old server is replaced with a new one by “copy-pasting” the old content as it is. This method of upgrading is proven and sound: the data infrastructure team knows it is safe, that no major problems will occur, and that it works.
Businesses are altogether less aware that these situations present a great opportunity to save money. If the new, enhanced way will be used when renewing the servers, it will unlock the opportunity to gain unprecedented cost savings.
An opportunity to optimize your SQL Servers
It’s important to realize that when your data platform next needs to be renewed, there will be great opportunity to save money, without making any compromises in terms of service level or reliability. SQL Server capacity optimization analyzes and measures your current platform’s behavior and capacity, and creates a plan for the new, more efficient platform where SQL Servers are consolidated or right-sized.
Let’s use an example to demonstrate:
Visma Solutions, provider of cloud-based financial administration software, hosts tens of thousands of databases distributed across several Microsoft SQL Server clusters. With so many databases, they were looking for a better way to manage growth and replace the physical hardware that was approaching the end of its life cycle.
Visma Solutions used SQL Governor solution to analyze their entire database platform to retrieve performance and behavioral information at the database, instance, and server levels. With this information, they forecasted the exact size of the servers they would need to handle their workload.
Visma Solutions optimized their SQL Server platform capacity and the result was huge monetary cost savings.
The previous methods of modernizing data platforms had served Visma Solutions and many other businesses well. But it’s only through capacity optimization that they both saved money and avoided the risk of having too little capacity for their needs.
IT teams and infrastructure managers aren’t exactly free on time, however, and data platform optimization isn’t always a high priority. The simple promise of 'cost savings' may not be enough to convince businesses to implement immediate change—and may not even necessarily be the best option for your business.
When should you look to optimize your data platform?
Your business will be somewhere along the timeline between the previous and the next data platform renewal: you may need to update your old SQL Servers tomorrow - or you may have just switched service provider and don’t see a need for renewal in the near future.
The need to renew your data platform—or a part of it—might not be on the horizon just now, but it will come, somewhere down the line. It’s at this point that businesses can take the opportunity to optimize their data platform and make huge cost savings.
Your first step will be to observe when the next natural time for a renewal project will be and establish that as the window of opportunity to optimize your data platform. When you have that date in mind, you should plan ahead (we suggest at least six months) to analyze and optimize your SQL Server platform. So, when the time comes, you can save on your server and licensing costs without expending time and effort on a fully-dedicated project.
Turn your next renewal project into an opportunity with SQL Governor
We are constantly working to help businesses realize the cost-saving potential through data platform optimization. To do so we built SQL Governor, which analyzes your SQL Servers and suggests how to consolidate or right-size them to optimize your data platform. Working tirelessly in the background, SQL Governor generates a negligible CPU footprint, so your business can continue operating without disruption.
SQL Governor has helped companies save, on average, 44% on licensing costs, while larger companies with more than 100 servers can potentially save millions of dollars. Even medium-sized firms with a few dozen servers can realize six-figure savings. The more SQL Servers you have, the more you can save.
SQL Server analysis should be a continuous process to prevent costs from rising and performance from dropping. SQL Governor automatically calculates the optimal configuration for your database platform. And the more time you can give the software, the more accurate its analysis will be.
Whether your next SQL Server renewal is on the horizon, you’re working with a service provider, or you’re looking to be more strategic with your data center—SQL Governor can help you optimally organize your SQL Server platform and save up to 50% in licensing and hardware costs. Base your next renewal on facts and accurate plan, without compromising the availability or performance of the new data platform.
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