November 2014

Accenture Invokes APIs to Create Hybrid Cloud Computing Environment

Grazed from ProgrammableWeb.  Author: Michael Vizard.

Most organizations to one degree or another will wind up deploying applications on multiple public and private cloud computing environments. To help streamline that process, Accenture has developed a set of APIs designed to make deploying and managing applications across a hybrid cloud computing environment simpler.

Michael Liebow, global managing director for the Accenture Cloud Platform, says the latest version of the system integrator’s hybrid cloud framework, announced this week, provides a set of APIs that creates an overlay over public clouds and private clouds based on VMware, OpenStack and Cisco platforms...

EMC Expands Cloud Management Ambitions

Grazed from TalkinCloud.  Author: Michael Vizard.

In one fell swoop this week EMC transformed into a force to be reckoned with in the cloud management space with the launch of new hybrid cloud services and the acquisition of three separate companies.

The EMC acquisition list included The Cloudscaling Group, a provider of a cloud operating system that spans public and private clouds; Maginatics, a provider of global namespace services; and Spanning Cloud Apps, a provider of a backup and recovery service designed specifically for software-as-a-service applications...

Convirture Adds OpenStack Cloud Backup Tool

Grazed from TheVarGuy.  Author: Christopher Tozzi.

A lot of people back up their data to the cloud. But how do you back up the cloud itself? Convirture, the company that until now has specialized in cloud and virtualization management solutions, hopes to answer this question with a new backup and disaster recovery solution for the OpenStack open source cloud operating system running on the KVM hypverisor.

The tool, called Convirture Backup, "is a software-based product that provides automated, policy-based backup for OpenStack compute pools and tenants with fast," according to the company. It has a Web-based interface and is designed to work efficiently by minimizing the load on virtual and physical infrastructure, bandwidth usage and storage requirements...

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Why Cloud Is A Double Edged Sword

Grazed from BusinessWorld.  Author: Ajay Gupta.

 few years back we used to store hard copies of the images we clicked in smart, colourful albums. Those were the days when the best we could do to preserve our important documents was to put them in a folder. With the advent of today's fast paced digital age, these safe-keeping tasks have been pushed to Cloud. Ironically, we are made to believe that our personal data is safe on some remote server that is unknown to us and out of our physical reach!

No wonder the recent series of Cloud Storage hacks and password leaks has managed to spread pandemonium amongst the enterprises and the users alike. One is left to wonder that inspite of major chinks in its armour, why are more and more number of enterprises pushing for Cloud?...

Cloud Computing: Splunk Enterprise 6.2 - Diving into Operational Logs

Grazed from VirtualizationReview.  Author: Dan Kusnetzsky.

I've followed Splunk Inc. for quite some time and have always thought that its approach to exploring and analyzing data found in operational and machine logs to be clever and, potentially, quite useful. The company recently launched its newest edition of its enterprise product, Splunk Enterprise 6.2.

The idea is to make it easier for IT and business analysts to search through mounds of data, find patterns and glean useful and actionable insight. Splunk makes it possible for analysts to discover previously hidden relationships in their data, regardless of whether it's being created and stored on-premises, off-premises or in a cloud service provider's datacenter...

Get Your Head in the Clouds

Grazed from CIOInsight.  Author: Samuel Greengard.

The march to cloud computing has accelerated to a sprint over the last few years. Nevertheless, many CIOs and other senior executives overlook or are unable to unlock the value of clouds, according to a new report from cloud provider Canopy, in conjunction with Vanson Bourne, which recently conducted a survey of 950 CIOs, CFOs and other decision-makers.

The study found that 81 percent of CIOs and CFOs in the U.S. fear their business will become uncompetitive, with a large majority of them (74 percent) believing this will happen as soon as the next 15 months. In fact, these executives estimate that their businesses lost a collective $41 billion in revenues last year due to the lack of ideal cloud solutions...

Security Analytics Startup Looks To MSPs, Cloud Partners For Growth

Grazed from CRN.  Author: Kari Hamanaka.

The head of an early-stage security analytics company has a well-thought-out strategy for partnerships moving ahead amid what he called accelerating demand for smarter approaches to security.

Austin, Texas-based SparkCognition is just about a year old and has established partnerships with IBM Watson, SoftLayer and Power, and while most of its sales currently are direct, Founder, President and CEO Amir Husain is already in the beginning stages of building out the company's channel...

Cloud Computing: Don’t Be Spooked by the 'Internet of Things'

Grazed from SysCon Media.  Author: Michael Bushong.

We got into the Halloween spirit here at Plexxi—check out this Plexxi pumpkin carved by our talented marketing manager, Khoa Ma!  Jack-o-lanterns aside, we know the thought of navigating trends like the Internet of Things and Big Data can be frightening, especially if you are unsure of how to approach them.

As these trends gain popularity and deployments increase, IT architects often worry about increased activity on already taxed infrastructures. Our own Mike Bushong is our resident expert on this topic and he penned an interesting blog post this week on networking’s atomic unit and “going small to scale up.” Creating smaller units of capacity makes the network easier to manage, and most importantly, scale...

Cloud Computing: Getting Ready for the Software-Defined Data Center

Grazed from USANews.  Author: Editorial Staff.

The Software program-Defined Data Center (SDDC) is at an early stage in its improvement, but software and hardware vendors are currently lining up to sell you SDDC items. EMC lately released its Federation Software-Defined Data Center Answer, a combined software stack that it hopes will serve as a reference architecture for all future application-defined data centers, equivalent to the way the Java EE reference architecture is a template option for several Java enterprise applications.

The objective of a SDDC is to do away with massive infrastructure boxes and replace them with network solutions dedicated to and tuned to the requirements of person applications. This will let applications to be decomposed into compute workloads, transport workloads, and storage workloads - and these many tasks can be executed wherever it makes the most sense...

Dell: Robots and drones to drive the cloud market in next decade

Grazed from TechGoondu.  Author: Aaron Tan.

Robots, drones and driverless vehicles will propel the next decade of growth in the cloud computing industry, according to a Dell executive.  In an interview with Techgoondu at the Cloud Asia 2014 conference last week, Martin Yates, strategic enterprise practice director at Dell Asia-Pacific and Japan, said the increased processing power delivered over the cloud will offer unlimited possibilities in advanced automation.

“You’ll see an acceleration of cloud computing in areas like drones,” he said, noting that companies like DHL and Amazon are already using or experimenting with drones to deliver packages...

Webinar: Transforming IT Infrastructure for the #Cloud Age

Grazed from VMTurbo.  Author: Webinar Announcement.

How to Deliver Real-Time Automation & Hyperscale Operations - with a VDI use case from a Fortune 50 Health Insurer

OpenSky Corp. helps transform IT infrastructure for the world's most innovative clients, and was specifically tasked by a Fortune 50 Health Insurer to increase the efficiency of its VDI environment and guarantee zero downtime... all while scaling from 1,500 to over 25,000 seats in less than four years.

In the process, OpenSky's Don McKeith realized that to fully deliver the project, a fundamentally different operations framework was necessary. What happened next provided insights from which every IT organization can learn...

Cloud Computing: Dell Introduces PowerEdge 13th generation server portfolio

Grazed from Dell. Author: PR Announcement.

Dell recently unveiled its most advanced and easy-to-manage portfolio of PowerEdge servers, designed to help customers worldwide address and optimize the evolving spectrum of application and workload requirements. The new Dell PowerEdge portfolio– which begins with five form-factors across blade, rack and tower servers– provides customers with choice in how they address industry trends including cloud computing, mobility, big data, and software-defined.

These are factors that more than 80 percent of IT decision-makers report as investment priorities for the next 12 months, according to the Future Ready IT survey, recent worldwide research commissioned by Dell and Intel...

Ten 'dangerous and misleading' cloud myths: Gartner

Grazed from CIO. Author: Divina Paredes.

Cloud computing is uniquely susceptible to the perils of myths due to the nature, confusion and hype surrounding it, says David Mitchell Smith, Gartner vice president and fellow. Myths are sometimes harmless but they do have an effect on how we approach solutions and can impede innovation, he states in a recent research paper. “Many myths are rooted in fear and misunderstanding. They can drive decisions and strategies based on fear and this leads to oversimplifications and mantras that are the real dangers.”

Even with a mostly agreed on formal definition, multiple perspectives and agendas still conspire to mystify the subject ever more. Add the incessant hype and there can be a resultant confusion that permeates IT (and beyond) today, he says. He lists some of the most “dangerous and misleading” cloud myths...

Cloud Computing: Hacker Lexicon - What Is Homomorphic Encryption?

Grazed from Wired. Author: Editorial Staff.

The problem with encrypting data is that sooner or later, you have to decrypt it. Keep your cloud files cryptographically scrambled using a secret key that only you possess, and it’s likely no hacker will have the codebreaking resources necessary to crack them. But as soon as you want to actually do something with those files—anything from editing a word document or querying a database of financial data—you have to unlock the data and leave it vulnerable. Homomorphic encryption, a still-mostly-theoretical advancement in the science of keeping secrets, could change that.

A homomorphic encryption scheme is a crypto system that allows computations to be performed on data without decrypting it. A homomorphically encrypted search engine, for instance, could take in encrypted search terms and compare them with an encrypted index of the web. Or a homomorphically encrypted financial database stored in the cloud would allow users to ask how much money an employee earned in the second quarter of 2013...

As Cloud Computing Barriers Fall, New Challenges Arise for Organizations, New CompTIA Study Concludes

Grazed from PRNewsWire.  Author: PR Annoucement.

New research released today by CompTIA, the information technology (IT) industry association, reveals that more than 90 percent of companies are using some form of cloud computing, a clear indication that the cloud has quickly become an essential ingredient of modern IT.

CompTIA has defined four stages of cloud adoption: Experiment, Non-critical Use, Full Production and Transformed IT. Companies will move through these stages based on several factors, including technical know-how, risk tolerance and budgetary constraints.  But as users move beyond experiments and trials into more advanced applications, they're also facing more challenges, according to CompTIA's Fifth Annual Trends in Cloud Computing study...

Does Stratus Have The Formula For OpenStack Success?

Grazed from Forbes. Author: Patrick Moorhead.

This weekend was Formula 1 racing weekend. In my hometown, Austin Texas. Many may not believe it, but Austin is actually home to a US Formula 1 race track, and there are other international races here. Each year tens of thousands come from all around the world, representing the pinnacle of wealth, and they descend on Austin, the same town that boasts a “keep Austin weird” campaign.

As unlikely as that seems to be as a combination, it is similar to the combination of Stratus and high availability private clouds. When most think about the move to private cloud, they think about more conservative vendors like VMware VMW +1.57% and IBM IBM -0.4% leading customers down that path, but in reality, something that all of the big vendors still don’t have in their OpenStack solutions – high availability – is being delivered by Stratus, a company that cut its teeth on the idea of “always on” computing in the enterprise. Download our paper for detail on how they are making this happen...

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Cloud Computing: German security law could lock out U.S. tech companies

Grazed from TheHill. Author: Cory Bennett.

U.S. tech companies are worried a German law under debate could bar them from doing business in that country if it is approved. The bill could require companies to turn over source code and proprietary data to the German government or to private critical infrastructure companies, The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday.

U.S. companies see the language as a way to exclude them from government contracts, given German fears over the National Surveillance Agency’s (NSA) ability to access U.S. companies’ data. Although the bill is still in draft form, it is expected to eventually pass. The measure is the latest in a long string of incidents that have U.S. businesses worrying about lost revenue overseas following the disclosures of NSA spying programs...

Mining benefits from cloud adoption

Grazed from ITWeb. Author: Editorial Staff.

Mining companies around the world are facing many challenges, such as managing unique operational complexities and staying profitable in tough economic times, under tremendous global pressures. "Cloud has long been touted as one of the Internet's greatest success stories, revolutionising many industries by improving operations, efficiencies, accuracy and so on," says Richard Vester, director of Cloud Services at EOH. "Mining is no different, and we are seeing organisations in this sector realising the potential of cloud in transforming the industry, and slowly embarking on a cloud journey."

Vester says cloud is set to be a major driver for growth in the mining industry, which is very competitive, and deals with fixed resources. "Mining organisations who adopt cloud can look forward to vast improvements in operations and well as major returns on investments. At the same time, adopting cloud will greatly reduce general running costs."...

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Predicting the next decade of tech: From the cloud to disappearing computers and the rise of robots

Grazed from ZDNet. Author: Steve Ranger.

For an industry run according to logic and rationality, at least outwardly, the tech world seems to have a surprising weakness for hype and the 'next big thing'. Perhaps that's because, unlike — say — in sales or HR, where innovation is defined by new management strategies, tech investment is very product driven.

Buying a new piece of hardware or software often carries the potential for a 'disruptive' breakthrough in productivity or some other essential business metric. Tech suppliers therefore have a vested interest in promoting their products as vigorously as possible: the level of spending on marketing and customer acquisition by some fast-growing tech companies would turn many consumer brands green with envy...

Beware the fat finger when it comes to cloudy data loss

Grazed from CloudTech. Author: James Bourne.

Human error is responsible for one in five data loss errors, according to the latest study from cloud provider Databarracks. The study, the fifth annual Data Health Check report, found that employee idiocy was the third most popular reason for data going missing with 18% of the vote, behind software failure (19%) and hardware failure (21%). Interestingly, corruption and theft were responsible for 15% and 7% of the poll respectively.

Yet it’s the larger companies who continue to foul up. 22% of large organisations listed human error as the main cause of data loss over the last 12 months, compared to 6% of small organisations. The report examines the cost of backup and disaster recovery. While a third (32%) of respondents spend less than half an hour on backup, a similar number (33%) take more than two hours or employ dedicated staff...