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Optimizing Applications on Cisco Networks: Beyond the Boundaries

Chapter Description

You may only operate (own) part of your delivery mechanism, relying on third-party organizations to deliver your application to both your internal staff and your customers. This chapter discusses approaches to this situation, covering ways to work within these confinements.
This chapter includes the following topics: - Title Page

This chapter includes the following topics:

  • Business requirements overview

  • Assessing demarcation points

  • Recognizing your limits

  • Meeting service needs

  • Assigning the correct QoS system

You may only operate (own) part of your delivery mechanism, relying on third-party organizations to deliver your application to both your internal staff and your customers. This chapter discusses approaches to this situation, covering ways to work within these confinements.

It begins by discussing how and where to establish your demarcation points. This not only helps to define your management structure, it also expedites fault-condition resolution by having clearly defined areas of responsibility.

It then discusses using this demarcation point information to recognize when you have reached the limits of your responsibility in the continuing optimization and application performance-monitoring (APM) model.

Next, it discusses how to incorporate business criteria into the APM process and introduces the concept of business service management.

Considering the newly assigned demarcation points, the chapter revisits the concept of assigning the quality of service (QoS) mechanism learned in Chapter 5, "QoS and MPLS: Tools to Manage Application Performance," and Chapter 6, "Application Deployment."

Finally, it discusses the importance of reporting, ensuring that the information is aimed at the correct target audience, and that it is clearly presented for all parties across the delivery system.

Business Requirements Overview

As organizations increase their dependence on IT, business requirements become more critical and the adage "If you improve IT, you improve the business" can be applied. Business and IT alignment is critical to any IT department wanting to understand and report business contextual information for the delivered IT service, but it is often outside the context of traditional network management systems.

This situation is further complicated when you have to work within the confines of an outsourced network—core parts of the delivery system are under the control of a third-party organization. This may be as simple as a carrier who is providing point-to-point circuits, or down to comprehensive outsourcing contracts that include, for example, all application servers and client desktops.

The trick is just to apply the same rules and processes on smaller sections of your environment. As discussed, your first task is to define your objective. In this case, your objective is to clearly identify where responsibilities begin and end for relevant parties. You have then identified key transition parts in your overall delivery system.

2. Assessing Demarcation Points | Next Section

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