Reliable configuration data for DRP

Configuration data stories

How a payments provider uses reliable configuration data to improve DRP

Reliable configuration data supports DRP goals

This customer had recurring issues with configuration data quality. As a result, this payments provider needed a way to ensure infrastructure configuration data continuity between their primary and backup sites. This, in turn, impacted the reliability of their disaster recovery plans (DRP). In addition, they had to remain compliant with regulatory standards and uphold their contractual obligations. Undoubtedly, having reliable configuration data would let them switch over to recovery sites with ease - if ever necessary.   

Why did they require reliable configuration data?

During their regular DRP tests, the customer discovered lots of configuration data inconsistencies. For instance, there were vast differences between the configuration data of their primary and backup sites. They were obliged to carry out full infrastructure audits twice a year, specifically for DRP and compliance purposes. As an example, each audit involved more than 500 manual sanity checks. Consequently, their operational costs were sky high and each audit consumed several hundred person days. In a scenario where the customer had to initiate their DRP, they would have little confidence that their systems would operate to the required standards. That kind of failure could result in fines amounting to several million dollars. 

Put another way, they were having to manually scan and register their full infrastructure configuration data, then make comparisons between their primary and backup sites. To help relieve the regular manual effort, they were looking for a platform that could detect any misconfigurations automatically. What's more, they wanted to run automatic sanity checks to compare configuration data between sites. Their ultimate goal was for 80% of the sanity checks to be automated and run every day. Therefore delivering reliable results in seconds or minutes, as opposed to weeks or months.

How Sweagle achieved configuration data reliability

Sweagle simultaneously consumed configuration data from all layers of their infrastructure, from servers, VMs, switches, firewalls, and load-balancers. It also checked standard application components, including web servers and Oracle databases, as well as configuration data from specific legacy applications. Then, Sweagle's powerful API analysed the configuration data and the platform's in-built rules engine ran validation checks. Previously, this had all been managed manually by the customer. So, in just 3 days, Sweagle automatically verified the full collection of configuration data from across the various infrastructure layers. In contrast to their manual processes, Swealge managed 28 different validation checks automatically with a mix of standard and custom validation rules. After this successful pilot, the customer had real confidence that all their validation checks could be automated quickly and efficiently.

Integration with the toolchain

Sweagle's rules library handled over 50% of the customer's requirements and the rest was defined by custom rules, specific to their use case. Sweagle's data model visualized every kind of configuration data from infrastructure to application. Since Sweagle creates a catalog of configuration data, it produced 'golden templates', accessed in just a few clicks. Sweagle then became an internal library which automatically checked their infrastructure configuration data against the model it had created. In contrast with other software in their toolchain, Sweagle integrated swiftly and smoothly into the customer's IT ecosystem as a result of its effective API design.

Never intrusive

Sweagle is a non-invasive platform, and as a result, it never impacted the customers' performance or SLAs. Sweagle ran its data collection on the target system, and then, performed all its automated validations inside Sweagle's rules engine. This created an auditable repository of all configuration data based on everything Sweagle consumed. In comparison to their previous ways of working, all infrastructure configuration data was consumed, validated and made available for export by Sweagle... in a matter of seconds.

To sum up, Sweagleautomated this customer's DRP checks (giving them peace of mind, constant compliance and configuration data continuity). Additionally, Sweagle continuously detected any configuration data deviations between their primary and backup sites, presenting results instantly in a clear dashboard.  

The outcome

By implementing Sweagle, this payments provider gained automated and reliable DRP tests, compliant configuration data standards and more time to focus on new business features. As an example. they were able to focus on re-architecting their legacy applications for cloud-native environments. Sweagle took the headache out of their manual DRP tasks by automating configuration data management which, in turn, reduced operational costs and and regulatory risks for the customer.  

Today, this payments enterprise has total faith in its disaster recovery plans. Thanks to Sweagle, they operate with confidence - safe in the knowledge that the automated configuration data validations are compliant, reliable and secure.  

Reliable configuration data for DRP
Reliable configuration data for DRP background

Scaling the 3 peaks of IaaS, CaaS & PaaS

Technical video

This video covers:

  • Reviewing your legacy as code policy
  • Charting your legacy to cloud journey
  • Setting up a config base camp

Watch this short technical video to understand the importance of your configuration data when preparating for IaaS, PaaS and SaaS.