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In the previous blog on the Performance Testing Environment, we discussed your desire to set up a testing environment and populating the PTE.  We also spoke a little on utilization.  Since your PTE is being set up for testing code and access paths, it really only has one use in life – testing.  No production work will be done on it, and typically you won’t be doing development work either.  The utilization of the PTE will be 100% dependent on how many tests you run through there.


Let’s assume your organization is working 9 hours a day, 5 days a week. Furthermore, let’s say each test runs for 2 hours.  And let’s say to make each test comparable, you want to start with the same data – same amount of data, same amount of customers in the customer database, same amount of transactions in the transaction database, etc., etc.  If you could instantaneously reset the data from the end of a test to the beginning of a test, you would theoretically be able to run 20 tests a week (4 per day (9hrs/2hrs) times 5 days a week).  If resetting the data takes the entire week, then you would only be able to run one test a week.  And your utilization would be 1/20 or 5%.  If you can reset your data in 7 or 8 hours, then you can run one test a day and your utilization would be 5/20 or 25%.  How about if you can reset your data in 15 minutes, then you could run 4 tests a day and you would have a utilization rate of 100% (4 per day times 5 days a week). Now there’s a utilization rate, everyone should envy, even your boss.  No waiting around for recoveries, well you would have to wait 15 minutes for the reset to occur, but everyone deserves a coffee break, don’t they?


What does resetting the data entail and what are the possibilities?  Well, a rational way to look at it would be to recover the data back 2 hours or possibly migrate the production data again. I think we can safely say migrating production data again is a rather large undertaking, certainly more than 5 or 6 hours.  How about recovering the data back two hours?  Well I don’t know about your shop, but generally people think of a production recovery (remember the PTE is essentially a copy of production) as also a fairly significant undertaking, also in the 6 hour plus range.


Within the BMC Recovery Solution we have had an option called BACKOUT AUTO for years (others are playing catch up and just starting to sell backout, but it’s crucial to note they didn’t add the word auto, and without that there is a lot of think time and manual work involved).  Backout auto allows us to read the log backwards and undo what’s been done over a period of time.  Sticking with our example, let’s say we want to backout 2 hours worth of logs, or testing, or updates.  With backout auto, your mileage may vary, but recovering within 15 minutes is well within the realm of possibilities.  Backout auto has even run faster than 15 minutes to undo hours of log. We don’t have to touch every last production tablespace, we don’t have to lay down every production image copy and roll the log forward – all we have to do is undo two hours of logging.  And BMC, mind you, can and has done that very quickly!


And that my friend is how you get the utilization rate for your PTE to be 100% !!!


Once again, please contact myself, your local Software Consultant/Account Manager for more information on BMC Backout Auto.