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BYOD! What do you bring to the party?

October 4, 2011 at 9:43 am PST

Historically Healthcare has the reputation of being behind the technology curve, however the next-generation worker is now driving the demand for the Bring Your Own Device business model.

“What? That’s crazy talk! How do I maintain a controlled secure environment?” Exclaims the IT Manager.

This new age of social intelligence and the evolution of social networks and mobility bring the expectation of free choice among the work force. Workers are putting the pressure on organizations for interoperability between the enterprise network and the devices of their choosing.

Today the average person on the planet has 1.8 devices on today’s networks connecting over 13 billion devices in total.  By the year 2015 that number is expected to  rise to 25 billion equating to 3.47 devices per person. Read More »

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Cloud Computing vs. Virtualization: The Differences and Benefits

Both solutions can help maximize your current resources and technology dollars

Like many technologies that were once available only to large organizations, virtualization and cloud computing are being scaled down for small business use. The two technologies are often mentioned in the same breath as though they’re interchangeable—they’re not. Here’s where the two technologies overlap: Virtualization is one of the fundamental technologies that makes cloud computing work. However, virtualization is not cloud computing.

In enterprise networks, virtualization and cloud computing are often used together to build a private cloud infrastructure. For most small businesses, however, each technology will be deployed separately to gain measurable benefits. In different ways, virtualization and cloud computing can help you keep your equipment spending to a minimum and get the best possible use from the equipment you already have.

First, you need to understand what virtualization and cloud computing are. Virtualization software allows one physical server to run several individual computing environments. In practice, it’s like getting multiple servers for each physical server you buy.  This technology is fundamental to cloud computing.  Cloud providers have large data centers full of servers to power their cloud offerings, but they aren’t able to devote a single server to each customer. Thus, they virtually partition the data on the server, enabling each client to work with a separate “virtual” instance of the same software. Read More »

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Cisco Partner Westcon Group’s LEAP Centers Focus on Technology’s Business Value

Sometimes it helps to see real-world routing and switching technology, data center security, and virtualized Unified Communications in action. Did you know that there’s a place you can do just that—either in person, or virtually?

It’s been just about a year since Cisco distributor partner the Westcon Group unveiled its LEAP Centers (LEAP stands for Learn, Experience, Architect and Plan). LEAP Centers provide partners with hands-on training  in a lab environment, where a reseller and end-user can come together for hands-on demonstrations.

Cisco partners can take advantage of training to evaluate core switching and routing processes, application delivery, data center security, virtualized Unified Communications and other data-centric and Cisco UCS solutions. Westcon has two LEAP Centers, one in Denver, Colorado, and the other in Brussels, Belgium. If you can’t visit in person, Westcon enables users to access LEAP Center resources virtually, as well.

I got the chance to chat with Bill Hurley, CTO of the Westcon Group, and he filled me in on what’s been going on over the past year, why Cisco partners should take advantage of what the LEAP centers have to offer, and how the LEAP centers have exceeded Westcon’s expectations.

It’s been almost a year since you launched the LEAP centers: What’s been going on with them during that time frame?

Bill Hurley: We have been phenomenally successful in raising awareness about the impact and benefits of virtualization and data center consolidation—those have been our two biggest areas of inquiry and activity. We’ve focused on showing how UCS helps enable business benefits. And we’ve also run specific programs around a service-oriented architecture (SOA)-enabled data center, as well as a UCS bootcamp.

LEAP centers have appealed to both partners and end-users: They’re not just about speeds and feeds, but instead help in putting all the technology in a business context. There’s a real benefit for partners in physically being at a LEAP center—it helps them understand how the technologies really work together. Read More »

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Digging Deeper in VXLAN, Pt 3, More FAQs

October 3, 2011 at 9:03 am PST

So, here is our final installment--we are wrapping up with some of the more common questions were are seeing.  In you missed the earlier posts, be sure to check out Part 1 and Part 2. I also have a couple of earlier posts introducing VXLAN and answering some of the initial questions.

So, onto the FAQs… Read More »

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VXLAN Deep Dive, Part 2: Looking at the Options

September 30, 2011 at 9:15 am PST

Hey folks--this is the second of three posts looking a little more closely at VXLAN.  If you missed the first post, you can find it here.  In this installment we are going to look at the some of the other options out there.  Two of the most common questions we see are  ”why do I need yet another protocol?” and “can I now get rid of X?”  This should help you answer these questions.So, let’s dig in… Read More »

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