Physical servers lend the comfort of knowing where your data is located and having control over access and protection of that data. But from a business perspective, there is a lot virtualization can offer. So what’s the compromise with security, and is it worth the switch to a cloud environment?
While the cloud is an “open environment,” with no physical equipment to hold data in a hard-and-fast location, there are security measures that can be taken. Understanding how your technology is being used and who would be interested in accessing stored information is an important step in protecting against security threats. It is also important to consider what type of cloud you are utilizing – public, private, or hybrid. When analyzed thoroughly, you can then integrate security controls into your architecture to view, manage, and control vulnerability and threats.
Finally, you must consider trust. How the technology is used depends on users, devices, applications, and data. Security policies and controls can be determined and installed after establishing how and why the data may be accessed. Vice President and Chief Information Security Officer at Intel explains in more detail the significance of trust and avoiding security breaches.Read what he has to say.
You may want also to take advantage of our coming webcast to see how industry peers are doing to solve the very challenges Cloud adopters face. Tune in to a webcast on December 6 at 9:00 am PST to hear from Cisco UCS customers Xerox and FICO Corporation, about how and why they used it in their Cloud environments.
Time flies! I’m off to the Gartner Data Center conference in London again. And as per last year, I’ll drive my this ancient and very historical Bothwell Castle on my way to the airport.
Last year I was very busy at the Cisco stand in the Solution Showcase. This time, I’m spending all of my visit in the actual conference sessions, learning about top concerns and trends in the data center world, and I plan to tweet out some of the most interesting and controversial learnings, as well as following up in subsequent blogs here. So follow me on Twitter @StephenSatCisco to learn what is surprising me (and I’ll use hashtags #CiscoDC #GartnerDC. And if you are at the conference, I should be near the Cisco stand at the breaks so drop by and say hello!
If you were not able you visit with us in Denver, take a look at the following videos and resources for more information on the demos we featured in the Cisco booth.
Mobile Collaboration with WebEx Web Conferencing
Teach, learn and collaborate from anywhere with WebEx on your iPhone, iPad or Android device. Meet face-to-face with new 2-way group video. Listen as Nancy Crouch, Deputy CIO, details how Wake Forest University extended collaboration with a campus-wide WebEx license.
Wow, time flies. When I started blogging at Cisco, 2 years back (here), helping organizations formulate their cloud strategy was top of my mind. I’d ran a customer market research survey, and one of the things we learned that in certain parts of the world, the access bandwidth to the cloud was a significant concern -- in terms of reliability, cost and bandwidth available. From this customer feedback, we concluded that Cisco WAAS -- Wide Area Application Services -- that helps accelerate applications and optimizes bandwidth usage - was a key asset in helping our customers overcome this cloud adoption challenge. And from this feedback, we realised that our Cisco WAAS Planning and Design Services were key to some of our customers adopting cloud.
Steve Watkins is a Consulting Systems Engineer for Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud. He came to Cisco as part of the newScale acquisition in 2011. He has been helping customers manage the migration to IT as a Service (ITaaS) since 2004.
Showback and Chargeback have become increasingly hot topics for IT, especially infrastructure teams. This is fuelled at least in part by the general acceptance of cloud computing, including private clouds and SaaS applications. Chargeback (and even Showback) are great ways of affecting behavior of the consumers of IT. It keeps consumers from demanding an unreasonable amount of services, and encourages them to use of what has already been invested in. There is also a growing mandate from Finance to make IT accountable for its spend, or at the very least to justify any requests for further investment. So infrastructure teams find themselves in the unexpected position of defining prices for the services traditionally offered. Most have no idea where to start.
Several vendors have produced offerings to help manage the showback/chargeback business case. This post will not discuss any vendor in detail. Instead, I want to talk about philosophy.
Broadly speaking, there are two major approaches to creating a price model for IT. There is the Utility-based model, in which pricing derived from actual consumption of CPU cycles, RAM, bandwidth, storage, etc. In this model, if you stood up a virtual machine for one week you would only pay for the actual amount CPU cycles and storage you consumed.
Alternately, there is Service-based pricing, which advocates a fixed price based on either the service itself or some other unit of measure such as hours, etc. In this model, if you stood up a virtual machine for one week you would pay for how many hours the VM was active, whether you used it or not.
I always council my customers to adopt service-based pricing. I think utility-based pricing is the wrong approach for IT departments, especially infrastructure teams. Here are my reasons:
1.INFLEXIBLE – Utility pricing is asset based, and therefore assumes that the assets will remain more-or-less the same. The model breaks down when you introduce changes, like renting infrastructure from public providers or changing service levels. What about if I offer VDI next year? That may mean two different types of pricing models, which gets even more complex. A service-based pricing scheme works with all services.
2.POOR CAPACITY MANAGEMENT – by only charging for the CPU cycles you actually consume, it encourages users to stand up systems and leave them in place.. which is exactly what we don’t want. Think of renting a car: you rent a car for 4 days but only drive it for a total of 3 hours, you still have to pay for all for days. If I just paid when I actually drove it, I would keep it all the time. We want to encourage users to return unused assets. Which leads to..