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Getting Smarter About The Cloud

We're a week early, but it's already apparent that one of the main themes of this year's Networld + Interop show in Las Vegas will be getting smarter about what's in the cloud.

Already, companies like Packet Design and Network Physics are talking about how their products will let IT professionals look deeper into the network, to make sense out of the morass that in the past was just taken for an undecipherable given. The wave of better measurement and diagnostic tools probably has the past few years' spending downturn to thank, since such innovation was no doubt spurred by customers wanting to wring more from their existing infrastructures.

As Network Physics CEO David Jones notes in our recent Q & A, Chief Financial Officers and CEOs aren't expecting CIOs to trim dollars out of capex budgets anymore. But they do want answers to questions about why Microsoft Exchange is running slowly every Monday morning. With this new batch of diagnostic tools and appliances, IT professionals should be better able to answer those questions -- while also making sure service providers are living up to the letter of the service level agreements they've signed.