Oct 16

The Register – Internet of Things will turn up the compute heat for data centres

IPExpo The Internet of Things will put more demand upon mid-range and co-lo data centres, according to the marketing manager of data centre kit firm Minkels.

Speaking at London’s IPExpo conference this morning, Minkels’ Niek van der Pas explained how, in his view, the explosion of IoT device usage will push more and more workloads into smaller data centres.

Highlighting how IoT devices, by necessity, spend their time talking to what he called the “edge layer”, comprising “metro/local” data centres – as opposed to core layer “public cloud and hyperscale” data centres – Van der Pas said the main effect of this is going to be to scale up the age-old problems of cooling and power demands.

Two graphs on one of his slides illustrated the problem. LINX handles just under 3Tbps of internet traffic at 9pm. While the graph showed the usual peaks and troughs during the day, a similar graph showing power drawn by LINX was almost flat.

More of The Register post from Gareth Corfield

Oct 16

SearchCloudComputing – Optimize your enterprise network design for hybrid cloud

Public and hybrid cloud adoption has a major ripple effect on enterprise network design. New bottlenecks arise, and some businesses need to alter their network configurations — particularly those for wide area networks — to ensure they get the performance they need.

With hybrid and public clouds, in particular, the networking focus shifts heavily to wide area network (WAN) connections. Businesses need to link their data centers to their public cloud provider’s sites, and often rely on their existing internet lines to do so. But this approach has shortcomings.

First, bandwidth is an issue. Traffic that used to roam about the data center now needs to move off-site, often increasing WAN traffic. Consequently, organizations may need to upgrade their internet lines, which can be expensive; pricing depends on a business’ location and amount of bandwidth needed.

More of the SearchCloudComputing article from Paul Korzeniowski

Oct 16

Continuity Central – Many organizations mistakenly leaving cloud business continuity to third-party cloud providers

According to new research published by CTERA Networks, while enterprises continue to migrate workloads to the cloud at a rapid pace, protection of cloud-based servers and applications has not fully evolved to meet enterprise requirements for business continuity and data availability.

CTERA’s new eBook, ‘Game of Clouds’, showcases the findings of CTERA’s inaugural cloud backup survey, and presents a deep look at the state of enterprise cloud data protection. A CTERA-commissioned study was conducted by independent research firm Vanson Bourne to examine the data protection strategies of 400 IT decision makers and IT specialists in organizations using the cloud for application deployment at US, German and French organizations. The study analyzes the benefits and pitfalls of current backup strategies, offers key considerations for organizations moving to the cloud, and looks at the impact of poor backup practices on business continuity.

More of the Continuity Central post

Oct 16

CIO Insight – A CIO’s Guide to Improving Vendor Management

The ability to effectively manage complex, multi-vendor sourcing arrangements is becoming increasingly important in today’s business enterprises. In many cases, however, vendor management capabilities aren’t adequate to the challenge. As a result, business value erodes, service quality suffers and enterprises are exposed to operational and financial risk.

As a discipline, Vendor Management and Governance (VMG) is gaining boardroom attention for a number of reasons. At a high level, achieving more value from outsourcing is becoming a top priority. A sourcing strategy based on cost reduction alone is no longer sufficient, and executives are recognizing that an effective VMG function can enable the operational transparency and process consistency needed to drive business benefits such as enhanced data analytics and customer insight.

More specifically, the continued growth of complex multi-vendor outsourcing agreements is underscoring the need for effective VMG. As delivery models constantly evolve, and as providers become more numerous and more specialized, the ability to oversee constant change and track multiple moving parts is essential.

More of the CIO Insight post from guest author David England

Oct 16

CIO Insight – Why Adaptability Is Critical for State CIOs

To keep up with tech shifts and changing business demands, today’s state government CIOs must constantly redefine the way they manage a wide range of IT systems and applications, according to a recent survey from the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO), Grant Thornton LLP and CompTIA. The accompanying report, titled “The Adaptable State CIO,” indicates that most state CIOs, for example, are moving toward outsourcing, managed services and shared services models for IT infrastructure and operations. Most are exploring or adopting agile software development approaches. They’re also looking to modernize the wealth of legacy systems that account for a substantial portion of their overall tech portfolio. In addition, many are focusing on ongoing innovations in mobility and the internet of things (IoT). In other words, our nation’s state CIOs face very similar challenges—and opportunities—as those in private industry. “(State government) CIOs are adapting to changing circumstances and expectations,” according to the report. “This requires agility to respond quickly to the unexpected, but also the strategic vision to anticipate and to plan for a future that cannot be easily predicted.

More of the CIO Insight slide show from Dennis McCafferty

Oct 16

Continuity Central – The State of Enterprise Resilience: survey report

Control Risks has published the results of its latest ‘The State of Enterprise Resilience’ survey, which assesses the degree to which the concept of resilience has gained traction and become embedded within organizations.

Over one third of respondents felt that their organizations lacked the relevant skills or talent to drive corporate resilience; this is an increase of 17 percent on 2015. This is in spite of the fact that 27 percent of respondents have actively recruited dedicated resources to support the resilience agenda and 46 percent have invested in training, awareness, and communications.

Other key findings include:

ISO 22316 provides guidance on resilience programmes
62 percent of respondents were either aware of or have read the draft of ISO 22316 – the guide to organizational resilience. 92 percent of respondents agree with the core principles which focus largely on shared purpose and collaboration across functions. However, 18 percent of respondents indicated that they would not be striving to adopt the core principles, preferring instead to stick to existing processes.

More of the Continuity Central post

Oct 16

The Register – Inside the Box thinking: People want software for the public cloud

Analysis On-premises file sync and share and collaboration is yesterday’s story. The future is the public cloud with dedicated software service suppliers, like Box.

File sync, share and collaboration is not a feature, but a product, best expressed as a service (SaaS) through Box’s three data centres and the public cloud, and not subsumed into part of an on-premises storage array offering. The company says it is now a content platform for the modern enterprise.

That’s the Box message and it’s working, though not dramatically, given that Box is growing and increasing its services.

Box has grown its base service with specific offerings for, for example, IBM, Salesforce, Microsoft Office, and Google Android for Work. It has also announced its Box Platform, an open API set for authentication, user management and content access.

More of The Register post from Chris Mellor

Oct 16

ZDNet – Is the IT budget ready to power digital transformation? The journeys of four CIOs

The digital transformation is upon us, with many CIOs expected to lead the charge. These technology leaders must determine how much of next year’s budget will drive internal and external innovation to meet staff and customer needs — and we’ve found a wide variety in investment levels across different industries.

While 72 percent of CXOs report that it is ‘critical’ or ‘very important’ for an organization to turn to a digital business model, only 15 percent said their company is agile enough to build such a system, according to an August survey from Unisys and IDG Research.

Another recent study found that 52 percent of companies surveyed looked to their CIO and CTO to lead their organization’s digital transformation, but only half said they actually had a business-wide digital transformation strategy.

More of the ZDNet post from Alison DeNisco

Oct 16

Baseline – You Can Get Control by Giving It Up

Giving up control is probably the best way to develop more competent employees and happier customers. And those outcomes add up to professional success for you.

People need a sense of control. Understanding this fact helps you make better management decisions, career choices and products. So many fraught circumstances can be explained or understood by the human need for control.

Why do supervisors micromanage? And why do the people being micromanaged hate it so much? In both cases, the culprit is control.

When tasks are assigned or delegated to a subordinate, the manager feels a loss of control. This out-of-control feeling is interpreted as, “They can’t do it as well as I can.” Or “They’ll get the credit for this instead of me.” Or “I don’t understand what’s happening with the project.” So they try to regain a sense of control through micromanaging.

More of the Baseline article from Mike Elgan

Oct 16

AFCOM – Dissecting the Data Center: What Can – and Can’t – Be Moved to the Cloud

Practical approaches on cloud migration from the AFCOM folks. Re-platforming is a great opportunity for the move, but there are others as well, including staff changes, entering new lines of business, and financial drivers.

According to the results of a recent survey of IT professionals, 43 percent of organizations estimate half or more of their IT infrastructure will be in the cloud in the next three to five years. The race to the cloud is picking up steam, but all too often companies begin implementing hybrid IT environments without first considering which workloads make the most sense for which environments.

The bottom line is your business’s decision to migrate workloads and/or applications to the cloud should not be arbitrary. So how do you decide what goes where?

The best time to consider migrating to the cloud is when it’s time to re-platform an application. You should not need to over-engineer any application or workload to fit the cloud. If it’s not broken, why move it? For the purposes of this piece, let’s assume your organization is in the process of re-platforming a number of applications and you are now deciding whether to take advantage of the cloud for these applications. There are a few primary considerations you should think through to determine if moving to the cloud or remaining on-premises is best.

Evaluating What Belongs on the Ground or in the Cloud

First, ask yourself: Is our application or workload self-contained or does it have multiple dependencies? Something like the company blog would be considered a self-contained workload that can easily be migrated to the cloud. At the other extreme, an in-house CRM, for example, requires connectivity to your ERP system and other co-dependent systems. Moving this workload to the cloud would introduce more risk in terms of latency and things that could go wrong.

More of the AFCOM article from Gerardo Dada