Design operation-ready solutions so that your solutions will run well in production. If you hire someone to recommend, design, and implement solutions in your environment, you would be wise to make sure they have significant proven experience in both system design and in operations management. There is a big difference between getting something to run in a test environment, without users, and running a highly available production system.

Many times what can be tested and proven in test environments cannot imagine all of the random situations which can happen in a production environment with real users. This is especially true for client-server systems where the client is especially unpredictable. Mail servers are just about at the top of this list. For a mail server to work on the internet, it generally has to accept connections from anywhere, 24 hours a day.

What makes a technical solution operation-ready? It’s operation ready if it includes all the pieces necessary for smooth, efficient, reliable, and durable operation. For a client-server solution, many times the following items are missed during the requirements definitions and design phases:

  • Verified backup plans, including restoration drills.
  • Fail-over/disaster recovery capability and testing.
  • Application health monitoring.
  • Application performance monitoring.
  • Log management. Solutions for application log file management/archival.

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