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What would you do with an extra 30 hours? Well we’re busy testing new services, improving existing ones, and building new partnerships to make the rackAID experience an even better one for our clients.

Now where did we get all this extra time? By ditching kernel reboots.

Kernel Reboots

Kernel reboots have always been a necessary evil. While our clients worried about downtime, we worried about scheduling, monitoring the reboots, and fixing broken backup agents. We worried about getting the updates rolled out fast enough. Worst of all, we worried about the systems that didn’t come back online after a reboot. From start to finish, the average batch of RHEL 5 kernel updates consumed just less than 30 hours of our staff’s time. There have been nine RHEL 5 kernel updates this year. That is at least nine reboots to keep one server running the latest kernel.

KSplice

In August, after three months of testing and evaluation, we rolled out Ksplice to over 100 servers in our management program. Our clients now have the best of both worlds. Their server is updated and they didn’t have to reboot. You know those two RHEL 5 updates that came out in August? Well, we didn’t spend 60 hours making sure kernel updates were pushed out and applied. KSplice notified us that the updates were on their way, servers were updated automatically, and our monitoring confirmed everything worked as it should. We didn’t have to bug our clients about scheduling reboots. Our clients didn’t have to worry about being offline. We didn’t have any broken backup agents to fix, or worse, broken servers.

Ksplice has a great ROI calculator on their website. It’s fun to play around with and imagine all the money we and our clients are saving, but really in the end, I’m more concerned about time. This August, Ksplice saved us about 60 hours of staff time.

Imagine what you could do with an extra 30 hours. Now imagine what you could do with an extra 30 hours five or six times per year.

Needless to say, at rackAID, we love Ksplice and we hope our clients will love Ksplice too. With the time savings, we can easily include Ksplice as part of our server management services at no additional charge.

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