Expert Analysis
Content posted in January 2011
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Is NFS A Viable Protocol For Converged Networking?
Commentary  |  1/20/2011  | 
Last week's "Ethernet Has a Goldilocks Problem" post generated some thought-provoking responses, but one really caught my attention: If we are to suggest that iSCSI is a viable alternative storage protocol for converged networking, where does that leave NFS? After all, storage vendors are increasingly pushing NFS as an alternative to iSCSI for the storage of virtual machine environments. If it's good enough for VMware ESX, doesn't it deserve a place at the adult table when discussing converged n
CA Technologies Steps Up Its Focus on Security
Commentary  |  1/20/2011  | 
CA Technologies has long had a strong presence in security; its CA ACF2 and CA Top Secret solutions for the mainframe world (z/OS) immediately come to mind. However, the company is making a notably strong push in security with a vision of Content Aware Identity and Access Management (IAM), as well as a focus on securing virtualized environments. Of course, CA Technologies is not unique among its competitors in evolving the security market, but what CA Technologies is really doing is illustrative
HP To Probe Mark Hurd's Severance Payout
News  |  1/20/2011  | 
Investigation is in response to shareholder claims that former CEO's $40 million golden parachute was excessive.
HP And Microsoft Jointly Develop BI And Data Warehouse Appliances
News  |  1/20/2011  | 
HP has introduced a line of appliances specially designed and configured to run Microsoft business software, including Exchange, SharePoint, SQL Server, in order to deliver business intelligence and data warehousing technology to business and enterprise customers. The appliances are designed to be easy to deploy and to avoid the complexity that frustrates IT staffs trying to match hardware and software on their own.
EMC Hosts A 'Record-Breaking' Event
Commentary  |  1/20/2011  | 
EMC has spent the first couple of weeks of 2011 building what it hoped was excitement for the "Record Breaking Event" here in New York on Tuesday. After receiving a cardboard broken record via FedEx, and innumerable e-mails, I braved the freezing rain to attend the dog and pony show. Some of the announcements indicate that EMC gets that it has to stop promoting the storage priesthood and make its systems more accessible.
Talari Takes Big Bite Out Of WAN Costs
News  |  1/20/2011  | 
The latest addition Talari Networks' Adaptive Private Networking (APN) family, the Mercury T750 appliance, is targeted at midsize enterprises with up to 24 remote sites. Intended for deployment in the data center, and starting at $21,995, the 1U rack-mountable T750 can be used with the company's branch office (T730), SOHO (T200) and data center (T3000) products. The new appliance supports WAN bandwidth aggregation up to 120Mbps downstream and 60Mbps upstream, while doing 128-bit AES encryption.
Risk Management In A Box?
News  |  1/19/2011  | 
You can't buy a safer environment, but software can help.
Tenets Of Risk-Based Security Management
News  |  1/19/2011  | 
Don't get bogged down in choosing a framework.
Rise Of Risk Management
News  |  1/19/2011  | 
The bad guys have stealth, time, and numbers. Fighting back requires our own unified front.
Verizon Ramps Up Cloud Offerings
News  |  1/19/2011  | 
Verizon Business rapidly expanded its cloud capabilities last year, and plans to do the same in 2011. It's not previously been seen as a prominent name in cloud computing, but its enhanced capabilities indicate that may be about to change. It started out in 2009 offering simple infrastructure as a service, like Amazon's EC2. Later this year, it will move beyond infrastructure into platform-based services and start offering customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (
Announcing Network Computing Pro: For IT, By IT
Commentary  |  1/19/2011  | 
I am very happy to announce the launch of Network Computing Pro. NWC Pro is a subscription service with access to more than 450 technical analyst reports covering topics in application optimization, cloud computing, data center, storage, virtualization, wireless and more. Written by our cadre of Network Computing real-world experts and InformationWeek Analytics analysts, Network Computing Pro is the ultimate resource for IT, by IT.
IBM, ARM Team Up On Tablet Chips
News  |  1/19/2011  | 
Big Blue will lend its advanced fabrication techniques to ARM's next generation of mobile processors.
Amazon EC2 Gains An Elastic Beanstalk
News  |  1/18/2011  | 
The automated system takes over scaling decisions for workload submitters.
EMC 'Doubles Down' On Core Franchise
News  |  1/18/2011  | 
In what EMC calls the biggest product launch in its--or the storage industry's--history, the company has announced 41 new products, ranging from SMB storage to enterprise backup and archiving. Today's announcements included EMC's first significant foray into the SMB market and a complete refresh of its midrange Clariion storage area network (SAN) and Celerra network-attached storage (NAS) systems.
HP webOS Tablet May Ship In February
News  |  1/18/2011  | 
Software acquired through Palm will unify all the company's mobile devices under a single OS.
Keynote, ExtraHop Team To Offer More Complete App Performance Picture
News  |  1/18/2011  | 
Marrying their application performance management (APM) solutions, Keynote Systems and ExtraHop Networks can now offer a more complete view of how an application is performing as it traverses from the Web front end to the back end.
EMC 'Doubles-Down' On Storage
News  |  1/18/2011  | 
A series of product launches highlights the seemingly insatiable hunger for enterprise storage.
EMC Addresses Surging Backup Demands
News  |  1/18/2011  | 
EMC's latest storage additions to its backup lineup include a refresh of its top-end Data Domain 800 family, a new high-end deduplication solution, and what EMC calls the industry's first long-term retention system for backup and archive. Unveiled on Tuesday, the new systems are part of a series of announcements from the storage powerhouse.
F5 Networks Offers Remote Access For Apple Wireless Devices
News  |  1/18/2011  | 
F5 Networks, an application delivery networking provider, has introduced versions of its Big-IP Edge Client and Big-IP Edge Portal applications that can run on wireless devices from Apple, including the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. The applications, which operate on a virtual private network, enable workers to access files and other content on the corporate network remotely, but conform to the security and compliance requirements set for devices that operate behind the firewall.
Cloudy, With A Chance Of Networking
Commentary  |  1/18/2011  | 
After a busy week of talking with Meraki, Aerohive and startup PowerCloud Systems, my head is spinning a bit after hearing about the cloud-oriented trio's advancements into new niches. Wireless providers are venturing into wired networking, a major acquisition has taken place, and one vendor makes commodity-class hardware compete with enterprise-grade components using a new and interesting approach. The cloud is heating up, and the lines between wireless and wired networking are blurring. If the
Steve Jobs Takes Medical Leave
News  |  1/17/2011  | 
Apple Chief Operating Officer Timothy Cook will run daily operations; Jobs will retain title of chief executive but will limit his role to involvement in major strategic decisions.
vSphere Tops Hyper-V in Disk I/O
Commentary  |  1/17/2011  | 
As a user of server virtualization tools, and a follower of the market, I've always thought that VMware's lead was evident primarily on the management side of the ledger--with vCenter integration, vMotion, Distributed Resource Scheduler (DRS) and the like. Microsoft Hyper-V, I thought, was a competitive hypervisor that needed a bit more age in the bottle to develop the features that I love in vSphere. Then Overland Storage hired my firm,, to test its SnapSAN S2000 in both environ
Review: Joomla 1.6 Boosts Business-Friendly Features
News  |  1/14/2011  | 
The open source content management system has addressed several key weaknesses, especially in rights and permissions management.
Nirvanix Gains Increased Market Traction With Triad Of Cloud Solutions
Commentary  |  1/14/2011  | 
I blogged about Nirvanix here on Network Computing back in November, and opined that the time to execute with cloud offerings is now. I have been following Nirvanix closely since then, and speaking candidly with its customers. It is clear that the company is executing well, providing substantial value to its existing customers, gaining new customers and fine-tuning offerings in order to take the competition head on. Nirvanix has its sights set on the high end of the competitive spectrum. The com
Storage Gurus Offer Their Best Big-Bang Bets
News  |  1/14/2011  | 
We are drowning in data with no relief in sight. According to Gartner, this growth--as much as 60 percent or more annually--is driving hardware, software, associated maintenance, administration and services costs. But with 2011 IT budgets seeing more restrained growth--barely 7 percent, according to Forrester Research--storage has become the poster child for doing more with less.
Mathias On Mobility: RIM's BlackBerry Far From Doomed
Commentary  |  1/13/2011  | 
The iPhone and Android handsets are cutting into Research In Motion's market share and the consumerzation of IT poses an even greater threat, but an enormous installed base buys time to adapt.
'Ransomware' Threats Growing
News  |  1/13/2011  | 
Password Proliferation Adds Security Risk
News  |  1/13/2011  | 
Employees must remember six or more passwords at 27% of organizations, resulting in security-compromising behavior and increased burden on help desks, warns Forrester Research.
PCI To Drive IT Budgets In 2011
News  |  1/13/2011  | 
A new Payment Card Industry (PCI) survey finds that respondents anticipate significantly increased spending on PCI compliance this year, which should drive security-related budgets across numerous IT areas. The survey of 500 IT executives on what's happening as a result of the recent update to the 5-year-old PCI Data Security Standards (PCI DSS 2.0), conducted by InsightExpress on behalf of Cisco, also found that the majority of respondents believe their organizations are more secure than they w
NetApp In Plans To Acquire Storage Firm Akorri
News  |  1/13/2011  | 
NetApp plans to acquire privately held Akorri Networks, a maker of software that helps companies use their storage capacity more efficiently in virtualized environments. NetApp, which sells storage and data management software, said Wednesday that it expects to complete the all-cash transaction early in its fourth fiscal quarter, which ends in late April. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Pano Logic Raises The VDI Bar
News  |  1/12/2011  | 
Desktop virtualization specialist Pano Logic is shipping the beta version (4.0) of its Pano System, a zero-client device that supports the three major hypervisor platforms (from VMware, Microsoft and now Citrix). The final version (4.1) will be released at the end of January, according to company officials. The company claims its desktop virtualization approach is unique because it is the only vendor to offer a complete solution that includes the client hardware, software, system management and
Network Error Disables Fire Department
Commentary  |  1/12/2011  | 
I try not to use this blog simply to indulge in schadenfreude, but I just couldn't resist when I found that the Tokyo Fire Department's emergency call center was down for over four hours on Jan. 5 due to a network error that a few lines in the switch config file could have prevented.
NephoScale Jumps Into IaaS Cloud Market
News  |  1/12/2011  | 
There's a new entrant in the growing infrastructure as a service (IaaS) cloud market that is claiming innovative technology rivaling that of established players such as Amazon EC2, Rackspace and Go Grid. NephoScale says that its cloud infrastructure is built from the ground up to overcome some of the limitations of legacy cloud providers.
CommVault Releases Results Of IT Storage Spending Survey
News  |  1/12/2011  | 
The economy is improving, and backup and recovery is the function that is both the most and least costly, compared to expectations, according to a recent straw poll that Commvault Systems performed with its customers to determine how they saw their budgets and resource allocation shaping up for 2011. Other major priorities determined by the non-scientific survey included managing the growth of data and spending on networks and equipment, particularly in the context of consolidating data protecti
Backup Storage Appliance Vendor 3X Systems Offers 'Bare Metal Recovery'
News  |  1/11/2011  | 
Remote data backup appliance maker 3X Systems today introduced version 3.0 of its product line for private cloud environments at small and midsize businesses. The upgrade offers, among other new features, bare metal recovery. With bare metal recovery, if a system crashes and has to be replaced, all the data and software applications that were on it, including updates, can be installed on the new machine so that it operates exactly like the old one.
Bring-Your-Own Laptop Won't Help VDI
Commentary  |  1/11/2011  | 
When I made my 2011 predictions, I didn't hold out much hope for virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI). I don't think that the upsides in moving to VDI--fast ROI, reduction in operations expenses, security enhancements, etc.--are enough for IT shops to change what they are doing. And I mean any type of VDI, from the traditional remote desktop that Citrix and Microsoft have offered for years to the newer VDI products that run as virtual machines on a desktop or off removable media, some of which w
JouleX Updates Software For Emerging ECEM Market
News  |  1/11/2011  | 
Energy management software maker JouleX is introducing on Monday JouleX Energy Manager (JEM) version 2.5, which helps control energy use within IT systems, and includes the addition of a smartphone application for remote control of those systems. The software product joins a growing market for what the research firm Forrester describes as Enterprise Carbon and Energy Management (ECEM) software.
More on Advanced Erasure Codes
Commentary  |  1/10/2011  | 
As we've previously discussed in "What Comes After RAID? Erasure Codes," forward error correction coding is a leading contender to replace parity RAID as disk hardware evolves past the point where parity provides effective protection. The question remains: Are Reed-Solomon and related coding techniques the inevitable replacement for parity in the RAID systems of the future?
Ethernet Has A Goldilocks Problem
Commentary  |  1/10/2011  | 
We're in the midst of a collision between data center networking and enterprise storage. Convergence is the clarion call from the halls of storage giants like EMC, Brocade, NetApp, QLogic and Emulex, as well as from networking powerhouses like Cisco, Intel and Broadcom. Although everyone seems sure that the future will converge on Ethernet, it is not clear how we will get there. Gigabit Ethernet is too slow for converged I/O, and 10Gbit hardware and cabling remains prohibitively expensive. Propo
Cisco 'Outs' Switches From The Closet
News  |  1/10/2011  | 
Cisco says that freeing data switches from the confines of the enterprise data center/wiring closet is a billion-dollar opportunity. Targeted at a host of new endpoints in customer checkouts, kiosks, warehouses, conference rooms, classrooms, hotel rooms, cruise ship cabins, gaming floors, labs, doctors' offices and call centers, Cisco C-Series Switches are described as the first switches to provide enterprise-class features, including security, Power over Ethernet+ (PoE+) pass-through capability
Verizon's On A Great Roll - But What Does It Ultimately Mean?
Commentary  |  1/9/2011  | 
The brass at Verizon Wireless have got to be pleased with where things are going these days. Of late, the mobile giant has had some big press releases and rollouts, and there's no doubt that different camps in several markets are taking note. If the only criticism that Big V faces this week is that CEO Ivan Seidenberg's keynote at CES was boring, the company's strategists must be hitting on all cylinders. But despite Verizon's immediate huzzahs, recent goings on in the mobile space have also gen
Nearbuy Leverages Micro-Location For Retail And Warehouse
Commentary  |  1/7/2011  | 
For many Wi-Fi systems, location displays and tools amount to little more than functional eye-candy. Even the best WLANs are subject to the laws of physics and radio frequency propagation, and can often speculate only ballpark locations without RFID and GPS augmentation. Startup Nearbuy Systems looks to change all that with its new Micro-Location solution, and the company has retail spaces and inventory storage facilities in mind as it spins up. But will retailers and shoppers bite?
Sourcefire To Shell Out $21 Million For Immunet
News  |  1/7/2011  | 
Network intrusion prevention specialist Sourcefire will pay a total of $21 million--$17 million now and $4 million to be paid over the next 18 months upon achievement of product delivery milestones--for Immunet, a developer of cloud-based anti-malware technologies. The acquisition is expected to extend Sourcefire's malware protection to the cloud and provides the company's first endpoint protection offering, according to company officials.
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