App Migration And The Art Of Perfecting ROI

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One of the issues I'm all too aware of as someone who often gets involved at the "plumbing" level of networking is that it's the applications sitting on folks' PCs (or MACs) that are the key to IT working successfully or otherwise.

I mentioned the other day that my mates at AppDNA  - them wot make migrating between OSs easier - had commented on the huge uptake of Windows 7 in the business world. Speaking with Paul Schnell of AppDNA regarding the launch of a new version of their AppTitude product, Paul really made it clear just what the scale of such change is.

Whereas, with the previous releases of AppTitude customers had readily looked at maybe a couple of hundred application migration engagements, now they are seeing multi-1000 application engagements at both Enterprise and Service Provider levels. That's a lot of applications and a serious potential headache. Having tested the previous incarnation of AppTitute (and we're hoping to get our paws on the new version asap) it became quickly clear how, what appeared to be an insurmountable task in manual mode - i.e. testing lots of applications for compatibility etc - became not just feasible but a relatively straightforward task with AppDNAs product.

But that was just looking at XP to Vista migration. Now we are not simply looking at Windows 7 migration but also the virtualisation worlds. Paul Schnell said that basically every customer is committed to going down the virtual route, even if some of them don't actually know what a virtual desktop is... So, not only are we looking at Windows migration issues but whether these applications can also be virtualised or not. A key feature that has been added with the new release of AppTitude is full remedial functionality, so an auto-fix option is available when problems are encountered. Brave stuff, eh - kind of, come and have a go if you think you're hard enough. But when you're talking about 1000+ applications all automated help is welcomed. Just trust your application migration application...

Another major issue Schnell noted was that of application and upgrade delivery. Basically companies simply cannot cope, whether they go down the msi auto-install route or whatever. So one of the new applications for AppTitude is application delivery management, probably never on the original roadmap for AppDNA but, hey, that's organic software development for you. As a result, what was taking two weeks to fail now takes 10 minutes to succeed. That's progress for you. Unsurprisingly, Schnell noted that ROI justification for the purchase of their software suddenly got a whole lot easier...

Watch this space for more on the new product when we get it on our test radar.

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