Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Cloud Management Tools Bring Sanity to Cloud Operations

A cottage industry of Cloud management tools has emerged to solve many of the issues companies face as they move to the cloud, like multi-cloud deployments, costs, governance, and security (see my earlier post).   I had the chance to sit in on a live demo of enStratus last week to see how they attack the issues mentioned above.  The enStratus cloud management solution provides a suite of tools for managing a cloud infrastructure, gaining control of costs and providing governance without sacrificing the agility the cloud can provide.

Plan Before You Cloud

IT has a history of solving problems, but in the process, creating new problems that must be dealt with in the future.  For example, back in the early days, IT helped the business digitize everything but as they did that, they ran into scaling issues, and then had to invent a way to store and access all of that data.  Businesses are moving to the cloud to lower costs, improve agility, and scale to meet new demands of their customers. But without proper planning, the potential to create a lot of new cleanup projects still exist when moving to the cloud.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Election 2012, A Case Study For Cloud Computing

There’s a lot of media coverage on the use of cloud computing by this year’s election teams and as a GigaOM article points out:
No matter if you voted for Red or Blue, you have to be impressed by the quick scaling up of systems, including applications, processes, and data to support the massive needs of the campaign.  This included spinning up the instances, operating them during the spikes of use, and spinning them down when not needed.  This is a great case study for the power and value of cloud computing.

For me though, it’s not just the “quick scaling up” but the ability to obtain this amount of computing just when you need it and move your costs to zero when the the campaign is over at a very low cost.  Before cloud computing the expense of deploying an entire data center’s worth of computing to do this would have been prohibitive and if a campaign did have the money to spend, the capability couldn’t be built fast enough.

Another factor that acts as an accelerant to cloud computing in this case  is mobility.  Campaigns had access to developers from all over the world, and built applications that connected candidates, voters and campaign workers via any internet connected device.  

-- Chris Claborne

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Higher Risk in Data Loss than Security in the Cloud

In this article in InfoWorld, Gartner makes an interesting point.   Data loss is a bigger risk than security in the cloud.   They almost seem to intimate that  businesses using the cloud assume that they don’t need to have a backup and recovery plan if things turn ugly.

 Moving to the cloud doesn’t mean you can quit thinking about business continuity.  Whatever the service, IaaS, PaaS, or SaaS, you still need to understand what the backup and recovery plan is and how the vendor ensures recovery and up to what point in time.