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Cloud Building Challenges – Part 1

Cloud building challenges – Part 1

Cloud building challenges

Building a cloud infrastructure requires CAPEX. Hardware, software, services, applications, licences, processes, network, connectivity – all require planning and investment. Time is a key factor: getting the planning right is important, but so is time to market. Take too long creating the perfect solution and it will be hard to get noticed and outdated. Conversely, rushing to market with an under-specified solution will cost considerable sums to correct.

Cloud service delivery requires reliable, next-generation connectivity. Reliable and seamless application and service delivery across private and public clouds requires a service-oriented architecture approach. With heterogeneous systems, a single pane of glass approach to orchestrating and metering both internal and external cloud environments is essential.

In this view of the future, the IT leaders become both broker and mediator. The challenge then is to interwork between disparate cloud-based services and internal IT, connecting service requests with the most appropriate service provider and service delivery.

The CIO or IT manager role is evolving to be a service orchestrator. Service providers are rapidly becoming mission-critical suppliers, providing truly transformative business services. A few years ago, anyone building a cloud would have to do all the heavy lift themselves. Vendors such as Microsoft, Eucalyptus and Flexiant have changed this with solutions for cloud builders.

Known cloud building challenges

1. Infrastructure and Virtualization

Hardware is increasingly power-efficient but although prices have fallen, it can still be expensive. The current recession has seen significant amounts of hardware, often less than three years old, on the quality second hand market making it affordable for many businesses.

Virtualization has improved with large vendors such as Microsoft targeting utilization rates on commodity hardware of 60%. This will continue to improve over the next few years. Power and cooling costs are also coming down, due to better data centre design, more efficient hardware and higher input temperatures allowing a longer period of compressor-less cooling.

2. Software and Services

Cloud is more than just virtualized servers, storage and networks; it needs software and services. The challenge is creating an automated and controlled environment with proper management and governance tools.

Vendors such as Cisco and Flexiant have solutions for cloud builders. Cisco’s vBlock (with EMC and VMware) sits on top of commodity hardware, providing a service and application stack, minimizing the need for specialized hardware.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

Flexiant is a solution with an easy-to-understand licensing model. It provides master images that can be quickly deployed for customers. Unlike vBlock solution it does not have all the built-in links to federated security, management or workload solutions; those have to be bought, installed, configured and licensed separately.

3. The importance of partners

The major hardware and software vendors are building out their own cloud environments, and looking to sell their products to other cloud providers. Choosing the right partner is important because they will have lease program for hardware and software and will work with you on resolving issues such as software licensing.

4. Secure by design

Building a new cloud is an opportunity to invest in the right level of security. Too often, software is seen as being insecure by design, demonstrated by the constant patching of products. A cloud development is more complex than a single client solution. You may be sharing hardware and even services across multiple clients, so there is a need to ensure the physical and logical designs are secure.

International security standards need to be taken into account. ISO 27001 is one such standard and gaining accreditation in this is a significant advantage for any cloud provider.

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