Expert Analysis
Content posted in March 2010
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Google Fortifies Enterprise Message Security
News  |  3/31/2010  | 
Enterprise Gmail users and Postini customers get security reports to identify risky settings.
Aruba Rolls The Cloud Into Virtual Branch 2.0
News  |  3/31/2010  | 
Aruba Networks has introduced an update to last year's Virtual Branch Networking (VBN) product launch. VBN 2.0 combines Aruba's wireless hardware platform with a unique set of cloud services to secure and improve performance connecting to remote sites. By pulling together a set of partners and leveraging the capabilities of its mobility hardware, Aruba is offering an alternate vision of branch office connectivity and trying to dispel the notion that the only way to deliver app acceleration and s
Cisco Simplifies Wireless Networking
News  |  3/31/2010  | 
Networking vendor's Valet line could challenge Apple Airport in home market.
Deduplication Backup Software - Avamar
Commentary  |  3/31/2010  | 
As we begin our dive into deduplication backup software, we will start with the guys that started it all: Avamar. Since the early part of this decade, Avamar, originally a standalone company, and later as part of EMC, has been working to convince people that delivering deduplication in the backup software and starting the process at the client, is the way to go. It seems like over the past few years they have been gaining steam, driven mostly by a clear articulation of where their source-side te
Ford Adds Security Features To In-Car Wi-Fi Technology
News  |  3/31/2010  | 
Ford Motor Co. is rolling out the second generation of its Sync mobile connectivity platform this fall with new features and enhanced security. Sync 2.0, as part of a larger offering of connectivity features called MyFordTouch, lets drivers access Wi-Fi hot spots to download RSS feeds and podcasts from the Internet to play in the car's stereo system. The transmission has to be in "Park" before the Internet connection works to prevent people surfing the Web while driving. Besides the connectivity
Viridity's EnergyCenter Brings Energy Management To The Data Center
Commentary  |  3/31/2010  | 
Mark Twain famously said, "Everyone talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it." Conversely, in IT everyone talks about data center energy efficiency, and many vendors are trying to do something about it. The introduction of Viridity's new EnergyCenter offers a particularly intriguing example. Viridity, a start-up company, tackles the data center energy-efficiency problem head on with EnergyCenter, a software approach to enabling data center energy optimization. Now corporate ini
Dell Hits Home Run With Virtual Era And Health Care Solutions
Commentary  |  3/31/2010  | 
On March 24th, 2010, Dell stepped up to the plate in the virtual era solutions ball game and hit a home run with their announcements and positioning of new products and services offerings. The company was well prepared and came laced up and ready to play at the Bently Reserve in San Francisco where they made their announcements and provided a partner roundtable discussion that demonstrated support for the new Dell products and solutions. In the health care space, Dell announced the new Dell Medi
SNW Predictions, Part Two
Commentary  |  3/30/2010  | 
If there is one word you are going to hear a lot at SNW this year, it's "cloud." Everyone is going to have something going on with cloud storage. Even companies that really don't have anything new to offer will suddenly have a "cloud offering." In addition to the whole cloud conversation, I think there is going to be some heated discussion around SAS-2 vs. Fibre. SAS-2 brings a 6-Gb/s transfer rate, a standardized expander zoning and backward compatibility. How will SAS as an infrastructure be a
Zenprise Enables Admins To "Be There" For Mobile Users
News  |  3/30/2010  | 
Mobile management vendor Zenprise has announced a new remote control functionality to its flagship MobileManager platform. With support available for Blackberry devices, the new feature gives network administrators both visibility and control over their users' handhelds, making it easier to get end-users back up and running no matter where in the world they may be. However, Zenprise may be limited in their remote control support by the increasingly broad array of devices that mobile users employ
Cache or Tier? Flash By Any Other Name. . .
Commentary  |  3/30/2010  | 
Today's flash SSDs are more than just the latest in a long series of storage systems that provide performance at any cost. RAMdisks, head per track disk, short-stroked drives and the like all boosted performance for datasets small enough to fit in the limited space they provided. Vendors are promising that we can use the performance of SSDs for more mainstream applications by moving the "hottest" data into SSDs and leaving the rest behind on capacity oriented drives. Now we just have to agre
FaceTime Controls Enterprise And Public UC Apps For Compliance
News  |  3/30/2010  | 
FaceTime's latest--and rebranded--version of its unified communications management and audit product, Vantage 10.1, includes new control features for Microsoft Office Communications Server (OCS) and IBM Lotus Sametime, as well as support for Skype and Microsoft LiveMeeting. Vantage, formerly IMAuditor, lets enterprises manage, monitor, capture, audit and archive enterprise-grade UC tools such as OCS and Sametime, and consumer apps such as AIM, Google Talk, Windows Live and, now, Skype, from a ce
Metering Social Networking Sites At The Gateway
Commentary  |  3/29/2010  | 
Most managers have no problem with a little internet frivolity during business hours. A personal E-mail here and a Facebook posting there can't possibly interfere with productivity on any measurable scale, right? Then there's "that guy." You know him, the guy who is on Facebook all day long. The guy who's connected with everyone on LinkedIn. The guy who tweets every detail of his day to the world. In other words, the guy who ruins everything for the rest of us.
Zyrion Releases Traverse For Business Service Management
News  |  3/29/2010  | 
Zyrion, a business service management (BSM) software provider, has announced the release of their Traverse Data Center Edition suite, which runs increasingly complex IT systems. Zyrion is also upgrading its Traverse data-gathering software used by managed service providers (MSPs). Traverse Data Center Edition is a complement to Zyrion's existing software package for MSPs and is targeted at mid-to-large enterprises that run their own IT systems and employ next-generation technology such as virtua
HP Rolls Out New Proliant Servers With Opteron 6100 Processor
News  |  3/29/2010  | 
HP has introduced three new Proliant servers running AMD's new Opteron 6100 series 8-core and 12-core processors (also known as Magny-Cours chips), delivering faster performance, improved energy-efficiency and a quick return on investment. The new lineup, with a starting price of $1,449, includes the HP ProLiant DL165 G7 and DL385 G7 rack-optimized servers, as well as the SL165z G7 "skinless" server, meaning the server is not enclosed in a metal box, like a typical rack-mounted server.
Windows 7 Less Vulnerable Without Admin Rights
News  |  3/26/2010  | 
Most Windows 7 vulnerabilities can be mitigated by administrative rights limitations, report from BeyondTrust finds.
HP Intends To Stay King Of The IT Vendor Hill
Commentary  |  3/26/2010  | 
Hewlett-Packard (HP) broke into the top 10 Fortune 500 at #9 in 2009 with roughly $115 billion in annual sales. It's an impressive feat, but what's more interesting is where HP goes from here. But before we examine what HP is doing and plans to do, we need a little perspective. IT in its broadest sense is, and will continue to be, one of the major drivers of economic productivity and wealth creation. Yet the number of large IT information infrastructure companies is relatively small, undercuttin
Virtual Servers Introduce Real Risk
News  |  3/26/2010  | 
Sixty percent of virtualized servers will be less secure than the physical servers they replace through 2012. So says Neil MacDonald, vice president and fellow at Gartner. Virtual machines by themselves aren't inherently less secure. The problem is how VMs are deployed. MacDonald says the processes and tools used in the deployment of physical servers aren't necessarily being applied to their virtual counterparts. "In no way would I say, 'Don't virtualize.' The cost savings are undeniable. But we
Apps Should Define Enterprise Mobility More Than Devices
Commentary  |  3/26/2010  | 
The woes of smartphone maker Palm have been front and center across the tech blogs and publications in the last week, with many folks predicting the death or sale of the storied company. While Palm's WebOS devices have not exactly taken the enterprise market (or apparently the consumer market) by storm, there is still a lesson for IT in the current drama: Avoid choosing a loser by not choosing at all.
Gmail-To-Outlook Glitch Fixed
News  |  3/25/2010  | 
Predictions For Spring SNW 2010
Commentary  |  3/25/2010  | 
With SNW 2010 only three weeks away, my briefing calendar is already filling up, but I am trying to determine what some of the key themes are going to be this year. While we can't say the economy is rocking and rolling again, it does seem that IT Professionals are on the hunt to solve some specific challenges in their data centers. Here are my predictions of what is going to come out of SNW 2010.
HyTrust Virtual Appliance Manages Access Control For VMware
News  |  3/25/2010  | 
The HyTrust Appliance provides access control, hypervisor hardening and logging for virtual environments. The 2.0 version, announced today, adds new features, including policy federation for global enforcement of administrator roles and access restrictions. Other updates include a root password vault that offers tighter control over administrator access to virtual machines and fully-indexed search for access to the entire virtual infrastructure.
The Next-Generation LAN
News  |  3/25/2010  | 
Tomorrow's local-area network will be the plumbing for everything business leaders want to do, from adding HC video to using FCoE to slash storage costs. So how we ensure our LANs are robust enough to handle the pressure?
The Next-Generation LAN
News  |  3/25/2010  | 
Tomorrow's local-area network will be the plumbing for everything business leaders want to do, from adding HC video to using FCoE to slash storage costs. So how we ensure our LANs are robust enough to handle the pressure?
Adaptec Maxiq SSD Caching Solution With Microsoft Technology Demonstrates Dramatic I/O Acceleration
News  |  3/25/2010  | 
Adaptec, Inc. today revealed benchmarking results for its MaxIQ SSD Cache Performance Solution. Integrating an advanced solid state storage control technology developed by Microsoft Corp., the solution is licensed and has been further enhanced by Adaptec. Using a simulation of a dynamic brokerage application environment, Adaptec consistently demonstrated a 3.2 times increase in system I/O (input/output) performance over the best results of a similar system without SSD caching. An increase in p
Endace Announces the Launch of the 9.2X2--The World's First Full Duplex 10Gb/s Capable PCIe Gen 2 Packet Capture Card
News  |  3/25/2010  | 
Endace, world leaders in high-speed network security solutions based on proprietary DAG (Data Acquisition and Generation) packet capture technology, today announced the launch of the DAG 9.2X2 - the world's first dual port 10 Gigabit per second (Gb/s) PCI Express (PCIe) Gen 2 packet capture card.
Microsoft Connects People in New Ways With Communications Server '14'
News  |  3/25/2010  | 
Gurdeep Singh Pall, corporate vice president of Microsoft's Office Communications Group, reveals new features during the first public demonstration of the software and discloses the availability date for Communications Server '14.'
New SonicWall UTM Appliance Boosts Port Density, Offers Advanced Switching
News  |  3/25/2010  | 
SonicWall's latest unified threat management (UTM) appliance offers enhanced networking capabilities for small businesses and branch offices, with the highest port density in the security vendor's line, along with advanced features for greater flexibility. It provides stateful firewall, deep packet inspection intrusion prevention, gateway anti-virus and anti-spyware. It includes 26 network ports--16 10/100Gb and 10 10/100/1000Gb ports--plus two interfaces for plug-in modules.
Shortest Path Bridging Will Rock Your World
Commentary  |  3/25/2010  | 
Whether you're planning to deploy FCoE in the data center or voice and video on your LAN, chances are you will have to redesign your network to be more efficient and robust than it is today. The way we design LANs today means we often over-provision because we build choke points through which all traffic has to pass even when the traffic is going to a neighbor. The distribution and core layers have to be over built just to overcome the choke points. It's wasteful and only addresses a symptom of
Attack Ads Are Effective And Here To Stay
Commentary  |  3/25/2010  | 
Thanks to Verizon and their successful "There's A Map For That" commercials, technology companies believing they have a distinct competitive edge are feeling emboldened to follow Verizon's lead. Thanks to AT&T, victims of this type of advertising are suing and counter-attacking. AT&T publically claimed the ads were "blatantly false and misleading," then filed a false advertising lawsuit. The company is now counter-attacking with their "Side by Side" commercials that compare the overall 3G exper
Sixnet Brings 3G Connectivity To Harsh Environments
News  |  3/24/2010  | 
Machine to Machine (M2M) networking vendor Sixnet has launched of new pair of connectivity options for industrial applications. The compact, rugged devices focus on bringing IP connectivity to remote machines in the harshest of locales, while giving administrators centralized management and monitoring. These new industrial products join Sixnet's recently announced commercial solutions, targeting not only remote industrial plants and equipment, but also less extreme applications, such as kiosks
Voicecon: Going Forward, Vision Matters
Commentary  |  3/24/2010  | 
I spent the better part of Voicecon talking to vendor executives about their companies' UC visions. In many cases, these were centered around some vague notion of making communication easier by bonding voice, video and chat into a unified whole. Frankly, they are all skinning the same cat, which is fine, but I don't see video-conferencing being able to sustain excitement for too long. Sure, it's all shiny and new when you first see it, but on a daily basis it becomes just another medium. Vision
Microsoft Spotlights Comm Partnerships At VoiceCon
News  |  3/24/2010  | 
The software behemoth is adding momentum to Office Communication Server with help from Audiocodes, Aastra, HP, Polycom and Verizon.
VoiceCon: Is Desktop Video In Your Future? Vendors Say Yes
News  |  3/24/2010  | 
Tandberg rolled out a new desktop video system, the EX90, that might very well indicate the shape of your desktop monitor in the years to come—a streaming video system and desktop monitor rolled into one, saving space on your desk. Tandberg isn't the only game in town; desktop HD streaming video from Polycom and Cisco were also demonstrated at the show. The demos look good, but the price is far too high for general deployment. Expect to see these hardware systems only in conference rooms o
New Symantec Managed Security Service Correlates Web Data For Threat Analysis
News  |  3/23/2010  | 
Symantec's Web Security Monitoring service, the newest addition to its managed security services portfolio, aggregates and analyzes corporate Web traffic data to detect and report on threats across the enterprise, from application attacks aimed at stealing sensitive data to malware downloads that recruit corporate PCs into botnets. The service aggregates and correlates log data from enterprise Web devices--proxies, Web security gateways (and/or a hosted Web security service) and Web application
Thinly-Provisioned Bandwidth
Commentary  |  3/23/2010  | 
Thin-provisioning of storage came about to address the issue of having to hard-allocate storage capacity to servers. This leads to more efficient utilization of a resource that many data centers have plenty of, but prior to thin-provisioning, most of it was allocated but not used. As we move into an era of increased datacenter bandwidth, we are going to need the ability to do the same thing. Think about it. Today most bandwidth is hard allocated to a single server.
3Par Scores Another First With Enterprise Sub-Volume Optimization
Commentary  |  3/23/2010  | 
On March 8, 3Par announced their introduction of Adaptive Optimization for sub-volume storage tiering along with their support for SSD's within the InServ arrays. Looking back at my comments in my blog post of January 30th, it is clear that 3Par has moved past EMC with first-to-market positioning with sub-volume data optimization for enterprise-class storage arrays.
EMC Adds E-mail Supervision Tool To Archiving Suite
News  |  3/23/2010  | 
It's been almost a year since EMC introduced SourceOne, its archiving platform that includes e-discovery and compliance capabilities to help companies manage ever-increasing stores of e-mail and instant messages. Now EMC has added SourceOne Email Supervisor to the suite. This module is designed to help companies monitor whether inbound and outbound messages are compliant with internal policies and external regulations.
Vendors Clash Over Lack Of Standards At VoiceCon
News  |  3/23/2010  | 
The lack of interoperability among Unified Communications systems sparked discussion at the conference's session on next-gen architectures.
Voicecon: Partnerships VS Open Standards
News  |  3/23/2010  | 
Microsoft is certainly gaining a number of important partnerships around their Office Communication Server with integration and partnership announcements from Audiocodes, Aastra, HP, Polycom and Verizon. Taken individually, none of these announcements is earth-shattering, but taken together it shows there is momentum growing behind OCS and also highlights the growing tension between open standards and practical interoperability.
Silver Peak's Odd Approach To SoHo Pricing
News  |  3/23/2010  | 
Today Silver Peak announced the new NX-1000, a WAN optimization appliance the company is positioning for small and home offices (SoHo). While the product has a form factor that will fit in the spare bedroom where your telecommuters work, its $4,995 price tag is aimed more at Wall Street than Main Street. "I think it's funny they say they are targeting the home office with this device," says Michael Biddick, an analyst at InformationWeek Analytics. "At $5,000, I don't know too many people who wou
VoiceCon 2010: Vendors Clash Over Lack Of Standards. No One Wins
Commentary  |  3/22/2010  | 
The most salient message that came out of Next Generation Communications Architectures at VoiceCon 2010 came from Jack Jachner, VP of Cloud Communications for Alcatel-Lucent, who said, "you should choose your communications system from a communications company." Jachner wants that communications company to be Alcatel-Lucent, but that sentiment can be applied to nearly every other vendor represented on the panel, because there is little interoperability between communications systems.
HP, Polycom To Collaborate On Videoconferencing
News  |  3/22/2010  | 
The agreement to use Polycom technology in HP's unified communications and collaboration portfolio will intensify the already heated competition between HP and Cisco.
Verizon Teams With Cisco, Microsoft For SIP Trunking And Immersive Video
News  |  3/22/2010  | 
Unified communications is more than just merging voice, video, chat and white-boarding into a platform. A Unified Communications (UC) system has to integrate with legacy telecommunications systems and provide real-time media support to clients that could include plain old telephone service (POTS), broad band, or high speed WAN links. High-definition video, the holy grail of video-conferencing, used to require room-sized systems with high-speed, dedicated WAN links, but new products from Cisco, P
EMC Lays Down The Virtual Storage Gauntlet
Commentary  |  3/22/2010  | 
In a recent event focused on "virtual storage," EMC fearlessly stated that "this changes everything." Thus, the company audaciously claims to "boldly go where no one has gone before." We industry analysts love that type of claim as it stirs up controversy, discussion and the need to write millions of words analyzing and dissecting its meaning, value and validity not only now, but also over the next few years. So, in a thumbnail sketch (relatively speaking) rather than a million words, let's beg
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