May 20, 2014
If your strategic plans include virtualizing servers and moving to the Cloud in order to streamline operations and improve performance, you are probably already aware of the conversion risks and complexities that can quickly drain ROI. Last year, we discovered in our annual State of Resilience research that almost two thirds of companies surveyed had delayed a migration due to downtime concerns and lack of resources. As an IT manager, it can be frustrating to have a clear vision for how to improve the business and reduce costs (and even improve life for IT staff), and yet have no easy or affordable way to get from here to there.
May 14, 2014
We conducted a survey last year and found that 64% of IT professionals said that their organizations currently use Cloud services. Interestingly, only 23% of those companies were using Cloud in 2011. It appears that in the last two years many skeptics have jumped on board as the value of Cloud services has become apparent. There's no doubt that migrating to virtual servers and Cloud infrastructure can decrease costs while increasing scalability and flexibility. However, taking the wrong approach to the process can put you at risk for vendor lock, data loss and downtime.
May 13, 2014
Recently, IBM revealed the future with the announcement of their POWER8 processor. That announcement, on April 23, 2014, sparked a lot of interest and enthusiasm in the Power Systems community.
May 08, 2014
A few of our experts have just returned from COMMON's 2014 Annual Meeting and Exposition in Orlando, Florida. The conference, hosted this year by the Loews Royal Pacific Resort, is the annual meeting of the COMMON membership and the largest gathering of the Power Systems user community. The Annual Meeting is COMMON’s largest educational event of the year, with four full days of in-depth IBM i, AIX, and Linux-related education that includes all-day pre-conference workshops, open labs and a wide variety of regular-length sessions.
May 06, 2014
It’s an interesting time to be in IT. The Big Data phenomenon is converging with the end-of-life cycle of many legacy systems. For one reason or another, most organizations need to increase their storage or IT capacity to some degree this year. One approach is to incur a capital expense for new hardware and infrastructure and hope that investment produces ROI and is scalable enough to stand up to whatever the next several years brings.
May 01, 2014
Recovery Point Objective or “RPO” is a business continuity term that represents how much data you could afford to lose in case of a server outage or disaster. Deciding how much data you can “afford” to lose is subjective and depends a great deal on your business. There may be some businesses that can technically afford to lose a day of data or more, but in reality there are very few that can afford to deal with the consequences of losing critical information. After all, information is the very heart and soul of most modern organizations.
Apr 24, 2014
One of the biggest challenges IT managers face is keeping highly complex datacenter always available in order to meet increasingly strict Service Level Agreements (SLAs) and compliance regulations. Fines from missed SLAs and regulations can be steep, especially in finance, insurance, healthcare and manufacturing; after all they’re in place specifically to reduce client and consumer risk and send a strong message if they’re violated. SLA and compliance fines are another expense that insurance won’t cover if you incur downtime costs from a disaster – and certainly not if you’re enduring planned downtime.
Apr 22, 2014
Estimates for average costs of downtime came in at around $8,000 per minute last year. That number leaves little doubt that the direct costs of downtime can cripple a business. However, that number doesn’t even take into account the indirect costs of downtime, such as bad press and negative social media chatter that can add devastating insult to injury.
Apr 16, 2014
By necessity, today’s datacenters are a mix of hardware, operating systems and storage on physical, virtual and cloud platforms. Heterogeneous environments can be notoriously difficult to navigate when it comes to planning business continuity. If you pick one vendor, you may be stuck with the best they have to offer on that day. Plus, you may find yourself signing a contract that can last for years. Vendor lock isn’t an optimal situation because you may be committed to one vendor’s products, limited options and a single approach to high availability and disaster recovery, whether it ends up working for you or not.
Apr 04, 2014
A recent New York Times article caused quite a stir when it reported “datacenters waste 90% of the energy they pull off the grid” and “a single data center can take more power than a medium-size town.” Recently InformationWeek reported “the traditional enterprise data center uses just under twice as much electricity as it needs to do the actual computing. The extra amount goes to run cooling, lighting and systems that sustain the data center. In a post-recession economy IT executives are eying the datacenter as a place where they can implement innovations to reduce and avoid costs. Boosting datacenter productivity, ensuring users have continuous access to data, reducing power consumption and streamlining operations are now part of the job description for IT managers and staff.