Expert Analysis
Content posted in April 2012
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Enterprise Flash Cache-ing Up To HDDs
News  |  4/17/2012  | 
Although the well-documented shortage of hard disk drives led many industry watchers to believe there would be a significant move to solid-state drives (SSDs) at the end of last year, that actually hasn’t been the case because many OEMs ordered excess inventory of SSDs. SSDs' higher cost compared with HDDs also makes lumping the two in the same category unfair.
Verizon, Partners Push OpenFlow, SDN
News  |  4/17/2012  | 
The telecommunications giant Verizon has joined with other top technology partners to collaborate on a software-defined networking (SDN) demonstration that is based on the OpenFlow protocol. The news of the collaboration was made at an Open Networking Summit being held this week in Silicon Valley.
Brocade Unveils 16-Gbps Fibre Channel Switch
News  |  4/17/2012  | 
Entry-level switch will be offered by EMC, Fujitsu, HP, HDS, IBM, and NetApp.
Puppet Labs Tools Up For OpenStack Clouds
News  |  4/17/2012  | 
Enterprises deploying cloud computing infrastructures using OpenStack now have another configuration tool at their disposal, thanks to Puppet Labs. The Portland-based company unveiled one of the first OpenStack implementations suitable for enterprise-class production deployments at this week's OpenStack Summit in San Francisco. The company's IT automation software is aimed at system administrators, designed to help them launch and support cloud computing infrastructures.
Mobile Data Meets Infrastructure--The Time Has Come
Commentary  |  4/17/2012  | 
The usual scenarios discussed for mobile data tend to involve either single-user connectivity or mobile hotspots, and rarely get into the notion of using mobile links for "important" business connections. But that is changing, as more manufacturers work the value afforded by fast-enough carrier-provided network connections into their feature sets and more customers buy in. Whether used in a primary service role, or more commonly as wireless failover, 3G and 4G data links provide some interesting
DataMotion Secures Cloud-Based Workflows
News  |  4/17/2012  | 
DataMotion is hoping to eliminate the need for multiple point solutions over a wide range of disparate or non-compliant electronic communications channels with the new, broadened version of its platform-as-service (PaaS) product, DataMotion Platform.
Rackspace, Nicira Extend OpenStack Cloud
News  |  4/17/2012  | 
The OpenStack open source initiative for developing cloud computing resources is gaining traction. Rackspace is introducing a number of new products based on OpenStack, including Rackspace Cloud Networks for delivering software-defined networking. Nicira will be partnering with Rackspace to deliver "networking as a service" based on the OpenStack Networking project code-named Quantum.
Google Drive Revealed: Watch Out Dropbox
News  |  4/16/2012  | 
Scheduled to arrive next week, Google Drive storage service comes with 5GB of free disk space.
Storage Controller Overwhelmed? Make It Faster
Commentary  |  4/16/2012  | 
Is your controller swamped by the demands of today's virtual machines and solid-state storage? Consider three solutions to fixing a "broken" controller, starting with speed.
SpiderOak Secures Enterprise Cloud Storage
News  |  4/16/2012  | 
SpiderOak is jumping from the consumer cloud storage market into the corporate space with two cloud offerings, for small to midsize businesses and for large enterprises. Security is based on what it calls "zero knowledge" privacy protection, in which the data is encrypted but the customer (not the vendor) controls the encryption keys.
Get Social: 11 Management Systems That Can Help
Slideshows  |  4/13/2012  | 
Social media management systems can help your organization manage and measure increasingly sophisticated social strategies.
Coyote Point Brings Next-Gen Networking to Life with Innovative Appliances
News  |  4/13/2012  | 
When it comes to WAN optimization and application acceleration solutions, big name vendors such as F5 Networks, Riverbed BlueCoat and Barracuda normally get all the press. After all, squeezing maximum performance out of a WAN and its associated applications has quickly become job No. 1 for most network managers. However, smaller vendors are striving to one-up the big names with new connectivity methodologies and technical advancements. Case in point is CoyotePoint.
Microsoft Hampered Zeus Botnet Investigations, Researchers Say
News  |  4/13/2012  | 
Microsoft's mishandling of the recent Zeus botnet takedown hurt related law enforcement and private research investigations, Dutch researchers allege. Will a proposed code of conduct for botnet takedowns help in the future?
Speed, Agility, Not Cost Reduction, Drive Cloud
News  |  4/13/2012  | 
Large enterprises that have moved toward a virtualized network infrastructure are now beginning to look at adopting private clouds, a trend that is moving from hype to actual deployments this year, says Tom Bittman, a VP and analyst with Gartner Research.
ODCA Releases 5 Cloud Computing Usage Models
News  |  4/13/2012  | 
In an effort to address some of the most pressing cloud computing challenges and requirements its members have identified, the Open Data Center Alliance (ODCA) has released five new usage models, available for download now.
WAN Optimization Helps Networks 'Evolve'
News  |  4/13/2012  | 
Networks are asked to do a lot these days--from moving video and voice to connecting mobile devices to delivering applications through a browser--but the basic architecture of a WAN hasn’t changed much over time, says analyst Zeus Kerravala. Enter WAN optimization, whose goal is to improve performance to deliver apps from the cloud that look as good and perform as if they were natively installed on the endpoint device.
vMotions a Killer App for 10GbE at Vonage
Commentary  |  4/13/2012  | 
Every year since the first Global 2000 company installed VMware, server virtualization has been at the core of more and more data center architectures. Vonage is one major corporation that is now making the leap, and its architects shared with me how 10 Gigabit Ethernet is playing a key role in how the organization handles vMotions.
The Dodgy World Of Vendors' Customer Case Studies
Commentary  |  4/12/2012  | 
This week I've had a couple of vendors that are heavily promoting their customer case studies. In the last 10 years, I've been on all three sides of the customer case study game, and it's worth pointing out the harsh realities. In my view, customer case studies are a deeply flawed metric for product evaluation because the process around them is highly distorted, if not plain dodgy.
EMC's VSPEX Bundles, Explained
News  |  4/12/2012  | 
Fit for private cloud use, new packages combine best-of-breed hardware and software from a host of EMC technology partners, with more flexibility than some bundles.
EMC Unveils More Flexible IT Bundling
News  |  4/12/2012  | 
These days, companies basically have two options for bringing new information technology into their data centers. They can acquire all the servers, storage, networking and software from different vendors, try to put it all together and make it work, or they can buy one big appliance that’s simpler to set up but is of a fixed configuration. EMC is offering a third option that combines the best attributes of the previous options, which it calls VSPEX.
Unlocking WAN Optimization Security
News  |  4/12/2012  | 
In this second installment of a three-part series on WAN optimization (the first examined visibility), Network Computing looks at the security tools that protect a network so it can deliver data, video, voice, cloud applications and all the other traffic it needs to send on its way.
Storage's 'Big' Overkill: Truth About The Trend
Commentary  |  4/11/2012  | 
The storage industry has jumped on the big data bandwagon in a big way, offering big backups, big archives, and other "big" products to handle all those files. What does it all mean?
Cloud Storage Decoded
News  |  4/11/2012  | 
Based on 14 vendor responses to our Buyer's Guide, we unravel services for backup, file sync, and more.
IBM Serves Up New Datacenter Architecture
News  |  4/11/2012  | 
IBM has introduced what it considers a new category of servers, a family of “expert integrated systems” called PureSystems. The company says PureSystems go beyond the various converged infrastructure or unified system approaches of its peers by adding a new middleware layer that aims to automate both infrastructure and applications, offering workflows from IBM itself, from its third-party partners, and offering IT the ability to define its own workflows.
Cloud Storage Rewriting SAN's Future
News  |  4/11/2012  | 
Cloud storage solutions are all the rage and are dropping in price, increasing in performance and threatening SANs as the primary means of storing data in the enterprise.
PCIe Encroaching On SAN Space
News  |  4/11/2012  | 
As enterprises struggle with the need to expand their network resources while working within budget constraints, Modular PCIe is being viewed as a low-cost alternative to expensive SAN infrastructure. But don’t rule out SAN completely yet, storage industry watchers say.
If I Were King Of The Wireless Jungle
Commentary  |  4/11/2012  | 
Given the number of players involved across all of today’s wireless and networking spaces, it is pretty amazing that our mobile connectivity is as good as it is. Regardless of what 802.11 standard you connect with, or what carrier facilitates your mobile data, the wireless world of today is generally impressive. But it could be better. If Wireless World were mine to run, here’s what I’d change. (Cue the day dream sound effects and wavy fading video.)
HP Unveils Vision Of The Cloud's Future
News  |  4/10/2012  | 
HP is aiming to bring to the cloud the host of advantages and improvements virtualization technology has delivered to enterprises, with a new architecture that allows network managers to deploy cloud-based solutions in minutes, instead of weeks.
Gnip Now Shares Social Sentiments From China
News  |  4/10/2012  | 
Aggregator of social sentiments strikes deal with Sina Weibo, China's equivalent of Twitter, for customers who want to know more about Chinese consumers.
SSD Opportunity & Threat To Storage Vendors
News  |  4/10/2012  | 
In part two of our examination of the state of enterprise SSDs/flash storage, we look at the implications for vendors, a mix of new and existing companies seeking to capitalize on a large and growing opportunity.
There's More To Enterprise SSDs Than Just Speed
News  |  4/10/2012  | 
Year-on-year, enterprise implementation of solid-state has doubled, analysts say. SSD benefits range from durability – supposedly up to 40-year lifespans – to space and power savings, in addition to the old standby, they're much faster than mechanical (HDD) devices. In the second part of this series, the vendor implications will be examined.
Network Visibility The Key to WAN Optimization
News  |  4/10/2012  | 
The network monitoring and analysis tool vendor Narus uses the ad catch phrase, “You can’t manage and protect what you can’t see.” While it’s maybe not up there with “Just do it,” it does get to the essence of what network monitoring and WAN (wide area network) optimization are all about.
Help Desk Becoming New IT Frontier?
News  |  4/10/2012  | 
The help desk traditionally rests among the cobwebs when it comes to IT strategic planning sessions and budgeting. Some in IT even regard it as a “necessary evil,” because it is the customary gathering place for problems and for interruptions of “production” work.
The Mess That Is Android: A Google-Powered Object Lesson
Slideshows  |  4/9/2012  | 
Google's Android is a great OS, but it has significant problems that must be addressed before it becomes irrelevant. Here are 10 of them.
Red Hat Rolls Out Storage 2.0 Software
News  |  4/9/2012  | 
Second version of storage appliance includes features for object-based storage and big data.
SNW Trots Out 'Cool' Storage Tech
Commentary  |  4/8/2012  | 
The Storage Networking World I attended in Dallas last week was a substantially different event than SNWs of old. In the past, SNW was the event where storage vendors socialized with each other, mixing business and pleasure over drinks and the pre-conference golf outing. This SNW seemed to have a lot more end users there for the education sessions and hands-on labs.
The Ugly Break Up: Time for Your Apps to Part
Commentary  |  4/8/2012  | 
The marketing is there, and has been for some time. Buzzwords have been coined and your interest is piqued. You sat back long enough to see if this was just vaporware or real, while gaseous. Cloud turns out to be more solid than its nomenclature. You’re ready, in fact you’re all in. Now the bad news: If you want to succeed in the cloud, the long-term relationship you've had with your apps must be broken up.
Preventing SSL Certificate Authority Breaches
News  |  4/8/2012  | 
SSL (X.509) certificates have been the backbone of public key infrastructure and privilege management infrastructure since virtually the onset of the Worldwide Web. But in recent years, SSL certificates have been in the headlines for all the wrong reasons, with certificate authorities (CAs) from RSA to Dutch company DigiNotar suffering high-profile breaches.
Cisco Upgrades Ad Hoc Mobile Network Routers
News  |  4/8/2012  | 
Cisco Systems is introducing upgraded versions of two recently developed routers for deployment on ad hoc mobile networks, which are networks set up on short notice for a specific reason such as a public safety operations at a disaster site, or military operations in a battle zone. The 5940 ESR and 5915 ESR routers are based on the Cisco Mobile-Ready Net (CMRN) architecture for scalable mobile networks. ESR stands for embedded services routers, referring to the various capabilities built into th
Should Amazon Define Cloud Standards?
Commentary  |  4/7/2012  | 
Since Citrix gave Cloudstack to the Apache Software Foundation, there has been a lot of blogging, tweeting, and arguing about whether cloud computing software vendors should simply let Amazon AWS drive cloud computing standards. It's time for the stakeholders--enterprises, vendors, open source projects, and anyone else interested to start scoping, developing, and implementing standards that everyone can use.
Is Legacy Storage Dead?
Commentary  |  4/6/2012  | 
Every major vendor will bring out a flash-only storage system before the end of the year--and almost every one of these products will fail. Legacy vendors have got to stop treating solid-state storage as if it were just a faster hard drive.
BigDoor Upgrades Gamified Rewards Program
News  |  4/6/2012  | 
New implementation process, analytics feature lets publishers increase user engagement.
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