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Think Through Your Cloud Plans – Or Else

Enterprise Cloud in the News

Enterprise IT has a disturbing tendency to get excited about technology rather than architecture and planning, according to a recent posting on InfoWorld.

According to InfoWorld's David Linthicum, this sorry state is quite evident as cloud computing begins to take hold in the standard IT technology arsenal.

"The fact of the matter is that there are two worlds. One involves the hype and good feelings about next-gen IT, such as cloud computing, that tells us the technology itself will save us from the mistakes of the past. Then there's the world of planning, architecture, and design that makes the technology actually useful - despite IT's aversion to this crucial stage," Linthicum writes.

The problem is not the fault of hyped technology, nor of those whom build and sell it. In many cases, the hyped technology works. Cloud computing is no exception.

"The blame lies with us in IT for succumbing to that magical thinking and the belief that new technology will wipe away our past problems and create a fantasy land of goodness. Funny enough, many in IT criticize users for the same thinking when they fall in love with iPhones, the latest version of Windows, or whatever new technology has gained their attention."

Disaster Recovery Plans Get New Urgency
Changing weather patterns pose new threats to corporate data centers and cloud computing host sites, according to an article in ComputerWorld.

Increasing numbers of weather-related disasters should have IT executives scurrying to update their disaster recovery plans.

The message to IT managers from business continuity experts is a familiar one: Put backup data centers in diverse, far-flung locations, and make sure your cloud service providers maintain geographically dispersed hosting facilities.

Those calls have been largely ignored in the past, and it's unclear whether the changing weather patterns will spur corporate executives to take more notice now, according to the article.

Disaster recovery experts say that the intensifying weather conditions are significantly increasing the dangers facing IT operations at businesses of all sizes.

"Last year was the worst year we've had in the history of disasters," said Al Berman, executive director of the Disaster Recovery Institute, an industry group.

Cloud Buzz Boosts Business for Hosting Firms
The cloudification of IT infrastructure has changed the hosting competitive landscape, likely boosting business for many hosting service providers, according to analyst Phil Shih quoted in Data Center Knowledge.

"Cloud is hosting," Shih told an audience of hosting professionals in his presentation on industry trends. "Cloud computing is not new. It's still a server hosted in a data center and managed by a third party. Many of you have been selling products like this since the 1990s. What's changed with cloud is virtualization and different pay models."

Something else that changed: customers seem more interested in "cloud" than earlier iterations of hosting models, which is providing traction for IT outsourcing in all its forms, according to the article.

The growing interest in cloud services is one of many factors that bode well for hosting over the next few years, Shih said.

"This sector has entered a period in which a perfect storm may be emerging," said Shih, who noted that outsourcing will benefit from tight budgets, overextended staff and the increasing complexity of IT. "There's a new normal out there, in which the hosted model is compelling."

More Stories By Patrick Burke

Patrick Burke is a writer and editor based in the greater New York area and occasionally blogs for Rackspace Hosting.

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