Mike Fratto

Network Computing Editor

Upcoming Events

Where the Cloud Touches Down: Simplifying Data Center Infrastructure Management

Thursday, July 25, 2013
10:00 AM PT/1:00 PM ET

In most data centers, DCIM rests on a shaky foundation of manual record keeping and scattered documentation. OpManager replaces data center documentation with a single repository for data, QRCodes for asset tracking, accurate 3D mapping of asset locations, and a configuration management database (CMDB). In this webcast, sponsored by ManageEngine, you will see how a real-world datacenter mapping stored in racktables gets imported into OpManager, which then provides a 3D visualization of where assets actually are. You'll also see how the QR Code generator helps you make the link between real assets and the monitoring world, and how the layered CMDB provides a single point of view for all your configuration data.

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A Network Computing Webinar:
SDN First Steps

Thursday, August 8, 2013
11:00 AM PT / 2:00 PM ET

This webinar will help attendees understand the overall concept of SDN and its benefits, describe the different conceptual approaches to SDN, and examine the various technologies, both proprietary and open source, that are emerging. It will also help users decide whether SDN makes sense in their environment, and outline the first steps IT can take for testing SDN technologies.

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Interop Las Vegas 2012: A Big Thanks to the Speakers

Interop Las Vegas 2012 is over. It was a good show--and I'm not saying that because my company, UBM Techweb, runs it as well as Network Computing. I enjoy going to Interop. I've been to 30 (two a year for 15 years), I run into a number of people I know, and I get to meet many more. Some have become good friends and colleagues. Attendance for the Data Center and Storage track sessions—the two tracks that I chair—were up from last year, and we had some good interaction between the speakers and audience during and after the sessions. That's what I call success.

I mainly want to say thanks.

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Thanks to the audience members who attended the sessions. I know the speakers appreciate you coming and asking questions. There were a number of good sessions each day; making a choice of where to go was difficult.

Thanks to the track speakers, in no particular order: Dave Peters from ESRI, Kurt Marko from InformationWeek, John Burke from Nemertes, Sam Barnett from Infonetics, Frank Wiener from Cyan, Eric Shepcaro from Telx, Barry Dykes from ViaWest, John Abbott from the 451 Group, Duncan Cambell from HP, Brendon Howe from NetApp, Stephen Steir from VCE and Dheeraj Pandey from Nutanix. The Data Center track was informative, and I'm sure the Interop Las Vegas audience learned from your sessions.

On the Storage track, thanks to Stu Miniman from Wikibon, Howard Marks from Deep Storage.net, Stephen Foskett from Gestalt IT, Randy Kerns from the Evaluator Group and Sandeep Singh from HP. In particular, Marks and Foskett agreed—I still don't know why—to engage in a "Cloud storage is DOA" debate, with Foskett arguing it isn't and Marks arguing it is. (Marks doesn't really think cloud storage is DOA, he was just arguing the point.) It was fun, funny and informative. Marks won by a landslide, but that was due to releasing his inner thespian. You can catch the debate on YouTube.

I had the pleasure of sitting down with:

  • Allan Leinwand from Zynga, who discussed what the social gaming company is doing with its cloud;
  • John Engates from Rackspace, about cloud computing and OpenStack, among other things;
  • Allwyn Sequeira from VMware, who talked about virtual networking and software-defined networking (SDN);
  • Steve Hanna from Juniper and the Trusted Computing Group, Lisa Lorenzin from Juniper and Mark Townsend from Enterasys, who caught me up on IF-MAP; and
  • Don Clark from NEC, who caught me up on what NEC is doing with OpenFlow.
There were lots of good conversations that I'll dig into later.

If you missed the Las Vegas Interop keynotes, you can catch them at Interop TV. We're getting ready to work on Interop New York, coming Oct. 1 through 5. We should be going through the call for papers and putting together the sessions. I know Jim Metzler and I will do the SDN and Data Center LAN Design workshops again.

Mike Fratto is editor of Network Computing. You can email him, follow him on Twitter, or join the Network Computing group on LinkedIN. He's not as grumpy as he seems.

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