Migration generally takes place over a period of time, even if it’s a short period. The problem is that users rely on their applications to work productively and efficiently on a daily basis. Any disruption can create problems for users. And, if the application is mission-critical, like an ERP system, that disruption could cause major damage to the business.
Before migration starts, it’s essential to understand application dependencies and put together a plan that minimizes the risk of disruption. A comprehensive application migration plan should help you prioritize critical applications and maintain levels of service to users.
However, understanding the dependencies can be a complex, time-consuming task using manual methods. Application mapping provides an alternative that helps ensure a successful migration. With the right tools, you can complete the task of mapping dependencies quickly and easily, compared with manual methods.
Application mapping tools automate the discovery of relationships and dependencies between the applications that provide a service and the IT components that support them, including web servers, database servers, application servers, networks and storage solutions. These tools can also map data flow, security measures and business continuity processes for each application.
By mapping these dependencies, IT teams can assess the potential impact of any changes that might occur during migration. In complex application environments, there may be a large number of upstream and downstream dependencies.
Any change could potentially impact the entire chain. In a complex environment, it could also be difficult to identify the change or changes that caused a problem, increasing the risk of lengthy service interruptions. That makes a clear, comprehensive dependency map essential.
Application mapping tools can help both application and IT teams work together effectively for a successful migration. Application teams gain a better understanding of infrastructure requirements and IT teams get a fuller picture of all the applications used in the business.
Prioritize Migration Tasks
A comprehensive dependency map also helps IT teams prioritize the migration of the most critical applications. These might include ERP systems, applications that support customer-facing services and decision support systems.
Identifying critical applications ensures that any essential downtime is scheduled outside business hours. Alternatively, IT can create warm or hot sites to ensure continuity of the most critical applications.
Simplify Migration Planning
Application dependency mapping tools take the complexity and hard work out of discovery and migration planning. Compared with resource-intensive manual methods such as network or server discovery tools and mapping on spreadsheets, mapping tools automate the process of discovery and dependency mapping. They also reduce the risk of human error, which can lead to unexpected disruption.
IT teams can quickly discover components and automatically map their relationship with applications. This helps them understand the impact of any change and minimize the risk of service interruption. By prioritizing application tasks in line with their business value, they can maintain the continuity of essential services.