Home > Virtualization > What Do the Wicked Witch of the East and a Stranded House Ditched on the Freeway Have to Do with Rogue Virtualization Deployments?

What Do the Wicked Witch of the East and a Stranded House Ditched on the Freeway Have to Do with Rogue Virtualization Deployments?

September 26th, 2007 Leave a comment Go to comments

OK, hang on tight.  This one’s full of non-sequiturs, free-form associations, housemoving debacles, and several "Wizard of Oz" references…

First comes the setup care of BoingBoing wherein a man who has permission to take one route moving his house down a specific freeway, takes another route instead without telling anyone :

Apparently some guy ditched his house on the Hollywood Freeway, and it’s been there since Saturday.
Richardson’s now immobile home was being moved Saturday from Santa
Monica to Santa Clarita when several mishaps _ including a
roof-shredding blow while attempting to pass beneath an overpass _
slowed its progress and it fell off its trailer.

Richardson, 45, got an oversized load permit from the California
Department of Transportation. But instead of following the authorized
Santa Monica-San Diego-Golden State freeways route, authorities said,
he headed through downtown Los Angeles and then onto the Hollywood

In the downtown area, the wheels started falling off, California Highway Patrol Officer Jason McCutcheon said.

Now the punchline courtesy of ComputerWorld wherein IT managers describe taking their own interesting routes unannounced whilst adopting virtualization. 

A couple of these choice snippets seem to indicate that many corporate IT managers are ignoring posted routes, choosing different off-ramps, and often experience the virtual equivalent of losing their roofs, feeling the wheels come off and leaving their infrastructure stuck on the information superhighway:

IT managers at some companies can feel forced to hide plans
from end users and vendors in order to overcome potential objections to
, said IT professionals and analysts attending Computerworld’s Infrastructure Management World (IMW) conference, held earlier this month in Scottsdale, Ariz.

In some cases, end users object to virtualization because
they’re concerned that virtual machines lack the security and
performance of dedicated servers.

Companies are taking a variety of measures to overcome such
obstacles, including adopting “don’t ask, don’t tell” policies in order
to get virtual applications running without notifying users and

Some IT professionals at the conference defended decisions to keep
users out of the loop, while others said such dishonest dealings could
prove tricky.

“It’s not like we’re hiding anything,” said Wendy Saadi, a
virtualization project manager for the city government of Mesa, Ariz.

My users don’t care what servers we run their applications on, for the most part, as long as it all works.” 

However, Saadi noted that an initial effort by a small Mesa IT
team to implement virtualization without notifying users — or the rest
of the IT organization — did force a change in direction.

“When we first started, [the small team] watched training
videos about how to virtualize everything without asking anyone first,”
Saadi said. “So they did that, and we were getting a reputation [among
users and other Mesa IT managers] as ‘that’ server group. We put the
brakes on everything.”

Software vendors are also erecting barriers to efforts to set up virtual computing systems, according to IMW attendees. 

Some vendors won’t support their software at all if it’s run
on virtual machines, they said. Those that do support virtualized
deployments have widely varied pricing schemes

David Hodge, manager of computer systems at Systech Inc., a Woodridge,
Ill.-based vendor of billing and dispatch software for concrete mixers,
is one IT staffer who doesn’t tell his vendors and end users about
virtualization projects right away. However, his employer is a software
vendor that prohibits users from virtualizing its software.

“We’re one of those vendors that doesn’t allow our customers
to do virtualization, but I’m off in my corner doing it,” he
acknowledged. “It makes my job easier to just put it out there and then
tell [users] later.
I eventually do tell them, but just not during the
initial period.”

Herb…cleanup, aisle seven!

Wow.  This is why trying to fix social problems with technology will never work.  The last time we tried to mix magic and housemoving we got this:

Sure, it all ended well, but the Scarecrow (InfoSec,) the Lion (compliance/audit) and the Tinman (IT) went through hell to get there…I guess there’s no place like /var/home

Clicking our heels ain’t gonna make stuff like this better anytime soon.  We need to get our arms around the policies regarding virtualization deployments *before* they start happening, or else you can expect to be pulling folks out from under the collapsed weight of their datacenters.

…if I only had a brain…you got all the references, right?  I knew that you would!


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  1. September 26th, 2007 at 10:00 | #1

    Looks like "We're not in Kansas anymore.." Thanks Chris for this technicolor association! Next I see flying monkeys…. evading static partitions.
    Greg N

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