CAPEX and OPEX… Are you making the right considerations on your Out-of-Band Expenditure?

When considering your new infrastructure management solution, your organization’s primary focus may be on Capital Expenditure (CAPEX), which refers to the initial cost to deploy a solution. Rarely is Operational Expenditure (OPEX), the operational cost to maintain said solution part of the discussion, and it’s easy to see why.

While capital expenditure is a pre-determined amount, operational expenditure is a hidden cost and tougher to estimate. It is only until after the deployment, that organizations realize the true cost of a new solution.

Out-of-Band (OOB) solutions with low CAPEX are often based on purpose built hardware and limited in capabilities. While the initial one-time investment can be lower than alternative OOB solutions based on an open platform, over time the solution will prove to be more costly with a higher operational cost.

Consider the following factors when investing in your new management solution:

  • Time – How long will it take to implement and optimize the solution? How complicated is the process and will you have to allocate training time and resources to learn the tools, implement the solution, and integrate it into your infrastructure? If the solution is an open platform and behaves like a server, you should be able to run your DevOps tools seamlessly.
  • The Ability to Automate – What tasks can you automate using the solution? Limitations in functional automation can hinder scalability and require excess time and labor. Does the platform help or hinder the growth of your business?
  • Maintenance Costs – Now more than ever technology evolves at a faster rate. How quickly are you able to upgrade firmware and install bug fixes and patches? How much time and money will be devoted to maintain and keep the solutions up to date? What if an open platform solution could keep firmware current all by itself?
  • Configuration – Most infrastructure appliances support Zero Touch Provisioning (ZTP). What if ZTP could run seamlessly over IPv6/IPv4, and initialize your automation scripts with multiple language options (Python, JavaScript on Node.js, Bash) all while keeping your configuration current?
  • Avoiding Human Error – With scripting you can test once and deploy across the board, eliminating the human error aspect of configuration and setup. What if your open platform could auto-discover attached devices, auto-configure and just notify you?
  • Security Breaches – Will a purpose built solution be able to catch up with current security fixes? What if you could run an open infrastructure management platform that has the ability to utilize the same fixes as a modern x86-64 bit Linux OS?

Aggregated Cost

What it ultimately comes down to is not just initial solution cost, but the aggregated cost of acquiring, deploying and maintaining the solution during its lifetime. It is a delicate balance between CAPEX and OPEX that will determine your true savings.

There is less cost savings to be had if the solution being implemented utilizes time and resources inefficiently. A solution that balances CAPEX and OPEX and is simple to operate and maintain results in a higher return on investment.

A trend we’ve been hearing from customers making the switch to ZPE solutions is that their current solutions weren’t meeting their needs, and in actuality, ended up costing them more to own, operate, and maintain.

“The time to deploy ZPE units and get them production ready is much faster than what we’re used to. ZPE’s advanced Zero Touch Provisioning (ZTP) makes setup and keeping devices current a breeze.”

Data Center Engineer, Hyper-scale Cloud Computing Company

If you are considering infrastructure management solutions, contact a ZPE representative to discuss how taking operational expenditures into account can save your company money in the long run.

ZPE has developed automation scripts proven by large hyperscale customers. Ask for our sample code to experience our full ZTP capabilities.

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