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Friday, May 21, 2010

Practical Analysis: The Slog Toward Private Clouds

Results from our private cloud poll.  We asked about plans for the internal IT infrastructure and how it will mesh with external cloud resources, so opinions about software as a service are largely factored out of the responses to the latest survey.  I don’t mean that in a pejorative way: SaaS is simply better understood than the other forms of cloud computing, including internal private clouds, and that comes through in our survey.  Whereas 18% of survey respondents report using SaaS apps and another 31% say they’re extremely likely to use SaaS, no other form of cloud computing shows even 10% using it or more than 20% extremely likely to use it in the near future.

Let’s face it, it’s an ongoing battle to get security, performance, reliability, auditing, and availability all right.  Even when the benefits are undeniable, it’s still a good idea to go slow, a lesson that should have been relearned with server virtualization.

Boosting server utilization by a factor of 10 and consolidating lots of underused systems is a great thing, but the virtual server sprawl that quickly followed is a management nightmare.

Moving fully to cloud computing implies virtualizing storage and networking and putting a healthy bet on the capabilities of those not-so-mature management tools.

The main business reasons for moving to private clouds are lowering ongoing costs, reducing capital investment, and accelerating delivery of services.

Posted on 05/21