Cracking the code to successful conversions: infrastructure management


How many projects have you worked on that forgot to test size, volume, and conduct load balancing in a newly converted environment? I have worked on a few of those types of projects. I know in a data warehousing effort, we always check any servers and databases, based on load, and query performance.

Most project managers like to check the target environment very close to project launch. To do this, the project would probably require the following:

  1. Size the target platform - include data size, query performance, and user interface performance.
  2. Use a performance testing product - Some companies use products to help test the new environment on all these aspects. The product may shoot off thousands of transactions and measure performance and capacity.
  3. Add in at least a two year growth - you may want to consider a five year growth for applications that you know will be there in five years.
  4. Resize environment - add in new processors, disk space, memory, etc.
  5. Test it again - measuring performance at least one more time. Most of the projects I have worked on do full blown performance testing at least 3 times.

Besides the server and database infrastructure, consider the "wholistic" view of the new environment. Consider the following:

  1. Does it have a reporting environment? If so you may need to size that separately.
  2. Is there any on-going programming (ETL type) that need to be sized and tested for performance? For example, does this new environment require data from MDM? If so, then those interfaces, in fact ALL the interfaces, will need to be considered in performance testing for the infrastructure.

About Author

Joyce Norris-Montanari

President of DBTech Solutions, Inc

Joyce Norris-Montanari, CBIP-CDMP, is president of DBTech Solutions, Inc. Joyce advises clients on all aspects of architectural integration, business intelligence and data management. Joyce advises clients about technology, including tools like ETL, profiling, database, quality and metadata. Joyce speaks frequently at data warehouse conferences and is a contributor to several trade publications. She co-authored Data Warehousing and E-Business (Wiley & Sons) with William H. Inmon and others. Joyce has managed and implemented data integrations, data warehouses and operational data stores in industries like education, pharmaceutical, restaurants, telecommunications, government, health care, financial, oil and gas, insurance, research and development and retail. She can be reached at

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