Standard CIT Virtual Server Service Level Agreement (SLA)



Server hosting

CIT has a cluster of physical servers that provides a “private cloud” infrastructure for virtual machines. The current cluster uses VMware’s ESX software. Along with a central NetApp network file server, CIT can provide virtual machines for various applications.

Servers can run either the latest Windows Server operating system or a Linux-based operating system (RedHat Enterprise Linux [Oracle] or Ubuntu Linux). CIT provides system administration support for Windows and Linux servers, as well as maintaining the infrastructure.

  • Running on a highly available cluster running in two data centers able to withstand loss of an entire datacenter and individual hosts

  • Server hardware is transparently upgraded every 3 years

OS Licensing

CIT will provide appropriate operating system licensing so that virtual machines can run on any node in the cluster.

Virtual Machine Storage Levels

Storage for the virtual machine infrastructure is divided into three tiers to allow for different levels of redundancy, speed, and disaster recovery requirements.

Tier 1

The first tier (Tier 1 storage has no single point of failure. It has the following characteristics:

  • Redundant data connections

  • Mirrored between two storage arrays (in South Hall Data Center and Erwin Data Center) in an active-active configuration (zero data loss on outage of one building)

  • Configured for off-campus storage array based disaster recovery (Once per day by default, more often if business case allows)

  • Configured for off-campus backup (Once per day by default, more often if business case allows)

  • Snapshotting capabilities for rolling back planned upgrades.

Tier 2

The second tier (Tier 2) storage also has no single point of failure. It has the following characteristics:

  • Redundant data connections

  • Mirrored between two storage arrays (in South Hall Data Center and Erwin Data Center) in an active-active configuration (zero data loss on outage of one building)

  • Configured for campus on-site backup (Once per day by default, more often if business case allows)

  • Snapshotting capabilities for rolling back planned upgrades.

Tier 3

The third tier (Tier 3) storage has a single point of failure and has no backups. This tier is for experimental and developmental purposes. No production server should run on this infrastructure.

Backups of virtual machines

CIT will perform full operating system level backups of virtual machines nightly with a five-day retention and a single full backup for one month. File restores can be requested by submitting a ticket through the CIT Request Tracker system or contacting the Systems team. File level restores of a single file are also possible in most cases and can be requested the same way.

Criticality of Service

In order to allow us to plan for disaster recovery we need to know the criticality of your server. CIT will contact you to define the criticality of the service of your server.

CIT has defined five criticality levels for servers:

  • High Impact/High Threshold of Pain Production System – Affects a high percentage of the community/college if unavailable. Business continuity procedures are difficult.

  • High Impact/Low Threshold of Pain Production System – Affects a high percentage of the community/college if unavailable. Business continuity procedures are manageable.

  • Low Impact/High Threshold of Pain Production System – Affects a small percentage of the community/college if unavailable. Business continuity procedures are difficult.

  • Low Impact/Low Threshold of Pain Production System – Affects a small percentage of the community/college if unavailable. Business continuity procedures are manageable.

  • Testing/development system – Minimal impact if unavailable

Virtual Machine Operating System Updates & Security

CIT will provide base operating system updates and security patches on a periodic basis in consultation with the owner. For virtual machines with Windows Server operating systems, the machines must be configured to receive automatic updates and have Microsoft ForeFront installed and running. For virtual machines with Linux operating systems, the machines must be configured using the CIT standard.

Virtual Center Access

CIT will provide customer access to the virtual management client, providing console access to the virtual machine, as well as a virtual power switch and ability to map physical hardware such as a CD drive or USB storage device.

Multiple processor usage

CIT will not allocate multiple processors without documented proof from the vendor that the application can make use of multiple processors and it is needed for performance. CIT will request a trial period with a single processor to see if the application load warrants additional processors.

Hosting Infrastructure

CIT will provide the necessary hardware and software to allow for live migration of virtual machines from one physical server to another within the virtual machine infrastructure. Migrations usually occur without client interruption. In the case of power or hardware failure, virtual machines may take up to ten minutes to restart.

Virtual Machine Operating System Updates & Security

CIT will provide base operating system updates and security patches on a periodic basis in consultation with the owner. For virtual machines with Windows Server operating systems, the machines must be configured to receive automatic updates and have Microsoft ForeFront installed and running. For virtual machines with Linux operating systems, the machines must be configured using the CIT standard.

Monitoring

CIT will monitor virtual machines using various monitoring systems, which report disk usage, processor load, network availability, and significant event log entries to CIT and the owner or owner’s representative. Appropriate actions will be taken based on monitoring system reports.

CIT will also monitor the usage of physical resources via virtual center and may require the owner to purchase additional capacity for virtual machines based on this monitoring. CIT will not reduce a virtual machine's resources below the purchased level but will provide recommendations to the owner on reduction of resources based on observed usage and requirements.

Maintenance and Upgrades

CIT will ensure that enough resources are available in the virtual infrastructure to support all running virtual machines. Hardware upgrades to the physical servers in the infrastructure will be performed at a minimum of every three years. CIT will provide N+1 physical servers such that loss of one physical server will not prevent any virtual machines from running.

Pricing Details