A Look Back at 2015

Jim Hannan (@HoBHannan), Principal Architect

In this blog we would like to take a look back at 2015. A lot happened this year. I will point out some of the highlights of our work at House of Brick during 2015, and look ahead to what we see coming in 2016. Below is a collection of links to blogs, as well as some thoughts on technology and trends that we are seeing in the industry.

But before jumping into the topics and blogs, I would like to thank all of our customers and partners on behalf of the House of Brick team. You have given us the opportunity to work on exciting projects with amazing people. Speaking personally, 2015 has been a fun and rewarding year for me professionally. Also, I would like to give a big thanks to those of you who have read and responded to our blog posts. We appreciate the reads and comments! We are always looking for new blog topics, so if any of you have some good ideas on things you would like to read about, please share your suggestions in the comment section.

An interesting trend that I have noticed over the last year is how the line is blurring between our Professional Consulting Services (PCS) and our Managed Consulting Services (MCS) business lines. I believe this is a good trend, and not as prevalent in the managed services industry as it should be. Our customers are using us not just as DBAs, but also for architecture, system administration and project management. An especially interesting trend we have seen is an increase in large projects under MCS, which I think is incredibly beneficial for customers going through a 12 – 18 month business critical application deployment. Some of these projects have included organizational modernization, DBaaS, DR planning and implementation, tier-1 readiness assessments, business critical application rollouts and design, and go-live support.

DBaaS and Automation

As customers mature their business critical application infrastructure they start to look for ways to automate routine processes and reduce administrative efforts. The natural tendency is to consider X-as-a-service, including Database as a Service (DBaaS). When speaking with customers interested in DBaaS, we remind them that an effective implementation requires organizational standardization and processes, not just technology and tooling.

Our DBaaS and automation blogs this year include:


Oracle Licensing and Oracle Assertions

It is difficult to do Oracle work without licensing questions coming up. The unfortunate truth is Oracle licensing is confusing and often frustrating for customers. I think many customers feel there is a lack of accurate information and processes for determining how to correctly license Oracle technology. Unfortunately, it is fairly common for customers to pay more than they should for licensing. We believe that you should pay for every Oracle product you use, but only pay for what you use and no more.

Below are some insights and trends from House of Brick for Oracle Licensing.


Oracle Topics

Clearly Oracle RDBMS 12c is getting its footing. We helped our customers with many 12c upgrades in 2015. Additionally, we are seeing Oracle EBS R12.2 upgrades picking up as well.

Here are some blog posts to help you make a decision on when to upgrade to 12c:


SQL Server Topics

While VMware has been our preferred platform for virtualizing business critical systems, we are getting a lot of interest in running SQL Server on Hyper-V. It’s a good conversation, and there are certainly benefits worth considering in the Hyper-V platform. We have a great team of very talented SQL Server DBAs who are providing industry leadership on business critical SQL Server implementations. Shawn Meyers, House of Brick’s principal architect for SQL Server, recently spoke at VMworld in both the U.S., and Europe. A link to his presentation on vNUMA and SQL Server is shown below.

We have had an interesting and exciting 2015 and I look forward to what 2016 will bring.

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