Automating edge deployments & lights-out management for Vapor IO
Problems and Gaps
Vapor IO’s ultimate goal for operations is to deploy lights-out data centers all over the world and minimize the number of staff required to maintain these sites. Crucial to this goal is having the ability to collect billions of data points at each location, which allows teams to monitor and control physical and virtual devices. But their existing management infrastructure was complex and outdated, and consisted of:
- Cellular modem with third-party subscription
- Out-of-band router
- Out-of-band switch
- Out-of-band serial console
- Out-of-band laptop/compute node
- Each edge data center required at least five separate management devices that were not integrated together. Deployments required a skilled technician to be on site for an entire workday. This time sink would multiply in direct correlation to the total number of new sites to deploy (8 hrs x 20 sites = 160 hrs).
- The ability to lease rackspace directly translates to revenue. But each site required Vapor IO to use at least 5RU for its own devices. As demand increased, this dead space would translate to millions in lost revenue, on top of additional power and cooling costs.
- Having disparate solutions not only increased the total points of failure, but also meant more devices to manage. This increased the likelihood of failures/outages that would require truck rolls, and also increased IT’s ongoing workload with more management devices to keep operational.
- A non-integrated, multi-vendor environment meant added overhead and rigidity that complicated procurement, project planning, and development of new designs. This made it difficult to adapt to different use case requirements, such as for near-prem computing or private 5G.
Vapor IO deployed the modular Nodegrid Net SR. This appliance provided the capabilities they needed to automate deployments and support lights-out management. The LTE module allows staff to remotely connect to sites and bring resources online, while the SFP module allows each site to connect to their nationwide fiber backbone.
“Nodegrid is like having another engineer on the team. Now, we deploy in an hour using one box instead of five. I’m still finding more ways that it frees up my engineers and trims costs.” … “Nodegrid keeps our costs down and extends everyone’s capabilities. The automation lets our interns do specialized jobs, so our engineers can devote more time to delivering customer value.” — Frank Basso, EVP of Operations, Vapor IO
Download the full case study
See how Vapor IO cut deployment times from 8 hours to 1 hour, and how the Net SR helps even their interns leverage automation to keep sites running.