VCDX – “Go-To” Logical Designs

As an Enterprise Architect, whether you are getting ready for the VCDX Design Scenario portion of your VCDX defence or improving your “on the fly” consulting skills in client meetings, it makes a lot of sense to have a standard set of “Go-To” logical design templates that you can rely upon when white boarding.

List of articles in my VCDX Deep-Dive series (more than 70 posts)

In my opinion, you should be able to draw a functional representation of the following technology silos:

  • Cloud Management Platform
  • Virtual Infrastructure Management
  • IT Service Management
  • Compute
  • Network – Traditional Core, Distribution, Aggregation, Access topology
  • Network – Clos-type leaf and spine topology
  • Network Virtualisation
  • Storage – Fiber Channel
  • Storage – FCoE
  • Storage – NFS
  • Storage – iSCSI
  • Storage – Distributed Software-Defined Storage
  • Virtual Machine
  • Backup/Recovery
  • Information Security
  • Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery
  • End User Computing

White boarding techniques:

  • In each of those areas, you should be able to highlight the Management, Control and Data Planes, and the Failure Domains.
  • Be constantly tying back to the business problems solved/business value added and the requirements, constraints and assumptions met.  This also includes the design qualities you will meet, eg. RAMPS.
  • Your diagrams should be very neat and tidy.  There should not be any illegible scrawling.
  • Keep the white board eraser handy to clean up any errors.
  • Carry your own white board marker set complete with different colours to simplify complicated concepts.
  • Before erasing any of your work, take a photo with your smart phone.  A picture is worth a thousand words and should be added to any minutes of meeting.
  • Initially, you will probably have to refer to your documented “Go-To” diagrams, but as you become more practiced, they will be ingrained in your memory.

Here are some examples of what I am talking about:

Design_Strategy_Storage Design_Strategy_Network

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Chief Enterprise Architect and Strategist, 4xVCDX#133, NPX#8, DECM-EA.

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