The Age of Extinction or Evolution for Value-added Distributors?

You probably saw my last blog, channel-partner-transformers-the-age-of-extinction/index.html" target="_blank">Channel Partner Transformers: The Age of Extinction, about the drivers channel partners need to evolve their businesses. Well anything that impacts them will impact the community of value-added distributors, as well. In our latest research, Channel Partner Transformation: Selling Cloud Services, we specifically asked channel partners, “How can value-added distributors better assist or augment your organization’s current capabilities as it builds out its Cloud Services portfolio?”

Topics: Cloud Computing channel partners cloud services Public Cloud Service

Enterprise Mobility and the Cloud highlight Microsoft TechEd Conference

This year's TechEd conference was enlightening in Microsoft's approach to the topic of mobile security. The core message of endpoint device flexibility and security was simple, but the breadth of Microsoft's coverage is underestimated. For example, Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Suite includes layered protection with identity management, device management, application protection, and file rights management for $4 per month per user for up to five devices.

Topics: Cloud Computing End-User Computing Endpoint & Application Virtualization Private Cloud Infrastructure mobile Public Cloud Service

Enterprises Need Outside-In Continuous Monitoring for Risk Management

Ask any CISO what their job entails and they are likely to respond with a common mantra: Assess IT risk, communicate IT risk to business executives, and then create and execute a mutually agreed upon plan to address risk.

Topics: IBM Cloud Computing Cybersecurity Information and Risk Management Security and Privacy Security risk management DHS Booz Allen Hamilton Lockheed Martin RiskIQ BitSight Target CSC CDM cyber supply chain security Public Cloud Service

Does VCE really mean Virtuous Customer Experience?

Over the past couple of days my colleague Mark Bowker and I have had the pleasure of being out in California’s San Diego area spending time with all the top execs at VCE. A bunch of the juicy stuff can’t be shared as yet due to NDAs – though I will say it is all directionally good and going to provide some really great new capabilities for VCE customers.

That being said – what I really came away with was so much more than just another ‘yada-yada-speeds-and-feeds’ understanding of what VCE is all about. A year ago I would have been thinking ‘but what about … and what about … or why didn’t you do this?’ Now I’m just damn impressed with a company that has really figured out what it is good at and it has completely focused on that. The VCE folks talked a lot about simplicity – simplicity in the product line as well as the experience of moving a Vblock from the loading dock to making it run workloads. What really is going on is there is an executive team highly focused on delivering outstanding service to their customers. Here are some of the highlights on how they are doing that:

Topics: Cloud Computing EMC Cisco cloud VMware Private Cloud Infrastructure Virtualization VCE Converged Infrastructure Public Cloud Service

Software Defined Everything (SDM) Includes Management

I find it fascinating that when new technologies are invented that are designed to improve efficiency and drive down costs, they end up having the reverse effect – especially the more disruptive ones. Let’s take cloud computing as an example. On the one hand, it provides an enterprise this wonderful ability to offload all of the basal tasks of ordering, installing, and configuring server/storage/network stacks with virtualization and potentially guest OSs on them. This alone is non-trivial and time consuming. For some of the more advanced clouds, you can actually change the size of (virtual) memory, processor, or storage sizes on the fly! What about patching? Hot patching anyone? Automated patches and updates for the core technology such as the guest OSs? These are additional, great benefits found on some cloud providers. And this is just the easy stuff. What happens when a VM becomes a zombie? Who finds, kills, and restarts the zombie? The list goes on …

Now what happens if you realize that one cloud platform was really great for development and scale testing, but when it came to the operational standard that has come to be expected in the enterprise, it can’t be easily replicated on that provider so you decide to build and test on one cloud and deploy on another? Oh and wait … what if you also want to be able to standup just enough to get by on-premises for a last resort, disaster recovery location?

Topics: Cloud Computing cloud Private Cloud Infrastructure compliance Governance Public Cloud Service

Who Can Design and Deploy Big Data Initiatives?

No doubt big data is experiencing massive growth today. A soon-to-be published ESG research survey of IT decision makers has found more than half of respondents will be increasing their spending by 11-30% over last year. There are many reasons why this is happening with tangible benefits applicable to most lines of business across industries. So, good news as big data initiatives gain momentum in 2014!

Topics: Big Data Data Management & Analytics cloud Enterprise Software Public Cloud Service

Do you need an Oracle to see the Cloud?

Last week was an interesting week where I started out in New Hampshire in single digit weather with promise of 2 new snow storms and ended it in Palm Springs, CA where the temperatures were "unseasonably" warm in the 90s. Personally, I’ll take unseasonably warm anytime anywhere. The reason I was in Palm Springs was for an Oracle Cloud Summit. The summit happened to be right in the thick of the BnP Paribas Open – a pro tennis event held at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden that has two large stadiums, a ½ dozen small ones and several dozen courts. Needless to say – about as 180 degrees in every way from freezing, snowy New England.

And speaking of 180 degrees – Oracle has come a long way since their CEO’s 2008 proclamation about the cloud. Take Oracle’s acquisition of assets like Nimbula, which they are leveraging to help them manage and orchestrate cloud resources – public and private.

Topics: Cloud Computing cloud Private Cloud Infrastructure Oracle SaaS IaaS PaaS Public Cloud Service

2014 Cloud Spending Intentions – Research, Trends, and Analysis

It’s that time of year again when we publish our IT buyer outlook for the coming 12-18 months. This year, our 2014 IT Spending Intentions and Public Cloud Computing Trends research has some really interesting new twists to it. Here are a few insights …

What got me most excited this year were two new things. We usually collect a tremendous amount of demographic data about the companies who are surveyed – company size, industry, etc. -- but this year we also capture the age of the company itself (i.e., for how many years the organization has been in existence). No big deal right? Well, I can assure you that the data for pre-Internet companies was a lot different when compared to companies born in the web age. We also looked at all of the data by the individual respondent’s age group. Once again, we found some fascinating differences. What’s more, this really gets interesting when it is compared and correlated to the age of the company.

Topics: Cloud Computing cloud IT Spending Intentions AWS Public Cloud Service

Hot Topics at the RSA Conference

It’s the calm before the storm and I’m not talking about the unusual winter weather. Just a few days before the 2014 RSA Security Conference at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

In spite of this year’s controversy over the relationship between the NSA and RSA Security (the company), I expect a tremendous turnout that will likely shatter the attendance records of last year. Cybersecurity issues are just too big to ignore so there will likely be a fair number of first-time attendees.

Topics: Cloud Computing Check Point Fortinet Cisco Networking Information and Risk Management FireEye mobile Security and Privacy endpoint security SIEM Cybereason Good Technology bromium 21CT CloudPassage Firewall Cylance click security Bit9 Carbon Black IDS/IPS Firewall & UTM Hexis Cyber Solutions Public Cloud Service

There are Clouds out on the Verizon

I’ve been watching the cloud scene for a good number of years now and the first iteration of most of the clouds were, well, boring. I’d call these version 0.4 clouds on a good day. Basically they seemed to be made up of standard enterprise storage and servers, running VMware, single tenant except for the rare case of some ‘shared’ storage that was walled off by having the service provider (mostly Telcos) provision and attach storage to specific servers.

Then along came some advances in the software and hardware that actually enabled some basic multitenant capabilities. Of course with the new capabilities came a whole lot more competition as well. To differentiate themselves, some providers went down the acquisition route pretty early with Verizon being one of them (2011). They quickly acquired Terremark for their managed services and their beginnings of a cloud platform. In addition to Terremark, Verizon also acquired CloudSwitch, a cloud software technology that allowed companies to create hybrid clouds between on-premises data centers and public cloud providers as well as between public clouds.

Topics: Cloud Computing cloud VMware Private Cloud Infrastructure Hyper-V Verizon Public Cloud Service