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  1. Phil Shirley
  2. Sierra/ Millennium/ Encore
  3. Thursday, September 28 2017, 08:41 AM
  4.  Subscribe via email

We got our Sierra and Encore servers about three and a half years ago (they're all in our building; after three years we got third-party hardware maintenance contracts on them). I need to start planning for what comes next. I'm wondering how much life I can get from these servers, and what my options for replacing them will be.

For the question of how much life I can get from them, it seems like I should plan to replace them in 2018 (they'll be four years old in April). It seems like a good idea to do that before we're faced with some dire need to, and four years seems like a reasonable life span. On the other hand, it would be nice to know if anyone has had their turnkey Sierra or Encore servers running for five years or more, or if anyone has any thoughts on trying to do that. We've replaced a number of Millennium servers in the 14 years I've been here, but I don't know if I should expect something different with the architecture of Sierra or of the latest machines (ours are IBM). I'm inclined to replace these next year.

For the question of options, I think that it's either hosted or software-only. There's an AWS hosting facility close to us and a nearby library reports great response times, and with an IT staff of two, we don't have the time or expertise for software-only, so it seems like an easy decision. On the other hand, I've heard of one software-only library who negotiated their own hosting arrangement with AWS; I'm a little curious about that, but you would still have to have the expertise to manage the resources on the server or other technical things, right?

 Thanks for any experience or thoughts you can share with me.

 Phil



pshirley@cuyahogafallslibrary.org
Phil Shirley
Technology Services Coordinator
Cuyahoga Falls Library
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Phil Shirley Accepted Answer
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Laura, III still does our OS upgrades. I think the 3rd party hardware maintenance would only apply in the case of hardware failure. Phil

pshirley@cuyahogafallslibrary.org
Phil Shirley
Technology Services Coordinator
Cuyahoga Falls Library
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  1. more than a month ago
  2. Sierra/ Millennium/ Encore
  3. # 1
Laura Knudsen Accepted Answer
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Our Sierra and Encore turnkey servers are also turning three and we're looking at replacement options. I would appreciate hearing anyone's experiences / tips on migration from turnkey to cloud as well as turnkey to software-only.

Phil -- I'm curious about your third-party maintenance contract. Does III contact your third-party company directly when maintenance is required? For instance, when a OS patch is (or is not) recommended for Sierra/Encore. Or do you need to be a go-between?

Thanks,
Laura

lknudsen@ideaexchange.org
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  1. more than a month ago
  2. Sierra/ Millennium/ Encore
  3. # 2
Wes Osborn Accepted Answer
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"On the other hand, I've heard of one software-only library who negotiated their own hosting arrangement with AWS; I'm a little curious about that, but you would still have to have the expertise to manage the resources on the server or other technical things, right?"

You might be able to find another 3rd party that would be willing to manage your AWS servers for you, but generally speaking, yes you'd still need to maintain the software, install patches, etc. You just wouldn't have to worry about failing hardware - which is a help. On the other hand, you have to "learn" the AWS way to do things and while AWS has a good toolset, it is still likely to be different from what you're used to managing on-premises and is likely not for the faint of heart. 

For the price  / performance ratio for our rather busy consortium self-hosting is the only option for us. But III knows that they need to re-architect their solution to be more "cloud" friendly, so here's hoping that option will be more viable for all customers in the future.



wosborn@clcohio.org
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  1. more than a month ago
  2. Sierra/ Millennium/ Encore
  3. # 3
Sarah Frieldsmith Accepted Answer
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Our Sierra servers are currently 5 years old.... We had Innovative do a "health check" earlier this year, and they said they looked fine but that they strongly recommended replacement after 3-4 years.



sfrieldsmith@saclibrary.org
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  1. more than a month ago
  2. Sierra/ Millennium/ Encore
  3. # 4
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