Nothing in IT Really Ends - Capisce? (Video)

I recently spent a little time in Italy, where I realized that whether in life or IT, nothing ever really goes away.

Topics: Cloud Computing Server Virtualization containers

Do we still need VM-specific backup tools? [video]

This is one of the big questions in 2016 (and each of the past few years as well). 

Have the “traditional” unified data protection solutions caught up in reliability and agility to the degree that the need for “point products” that only protect VMs are no longer necessary? To help answer the question, I've recorded a short video:

Topics: Data Protection VMware Networking Information and Risk Management Server Virtualization

The Challenges and Benefits of Virtualization Protection

Last week, my article in Windows IT Pro on “Virtualize Everything” stimulated a rather wide range of banter:

  • A few folks pointed out that some servers should not be virtualized, such as some DNS, Active Directory domain controllers, and perhaps the management system that controls your hypervisor infrastructure. Those folks are correct—there absolutely are logical exceptions and “everything” is an intentional exaggeration. But hopefully, we as an IT industry are getting continually closer to server virtualization being the defacto method for server provisioning and management, except where an exception is reasonable.
Topics: Data Protection Server Virtualization

Advanced Business Value with Virtualization Strategies

This video captures the state of server virtualization and the impact it is having in adjacent IT initiatives. I also step through desktop virtualization, network virtualization, and storage virtualization and the potential economic impact these strategies have on the business.

Topics: Cloud Computing Storage Endpoint & Application Virtualization IT Infrastructure Networking Server Virtualization Enterprise Mobility Cloud Platforms & Services

Network Security Trumps Server Security in the Enterprise

There is a historical conundrum in cybersecurity about where to concentrate security skills, controls, and oversight. Hackers penetrate networks in order to compromise hosts and steal data. Given this obvious workflow, should CISOs focus security resources on networks, hosts, or a balanced combination of both?

Topics: Network Security Cybersecurity Cisco Information and Risk Management FireEye McAfee antivirus Server Virtualization

Remember When

Your pager goes off and wakes you at 4:00 AM to let you know that the power is back on at the office, and you think, “Oh Great.” You look out the window and see the ground covered with snow as you fire up the home computer to see if you can send an e-mail - nothing. The drive to the office is quicker than usual, because there’s no traffic. It’s dark as you walk down the hall past the empty cubes, swipe your security card past the reader and open the big steel door. Ah, the familiar sound of cooling fans as you flip on the lights and walk to one of the many computer racks in the room. You jiggle the mouse in front of the console, and it lights up with a blue screen and a half booted system. The only option is to hit the power button.

That memory ran through my head during one of the recent ESG Lab projects I was involved in. I was thinking how rare it is for the computer equipment an administrator manages to be in the same office they work in these days - or even the same state, for that matter. We were testing a solution that paired NEC blade servers and storage with PAN Manager software from Egenera at the time.

Topics: Cloud Computing Storage IT Infrastructure Compute data storage Server Virtualization Cloud Platforms & Services ESG Validation Services

The Security Skills Shortage Is Worse Than You Think

I’ve written a lot about the security skills shortage but it is worth reviewing a bit of data here for context. According to ESG Research, 55% of enterprise organizations (i.e., those with more than 1,000 employees) plan to hire additional security professionals in 2012 but they are extremely hard to find. In fact, 83% of enterprises claim that it is “extremely difficult” or “somewhat difficult” to recruit and/or hire security professionals in the current market.

Given this data, it is fair to assume that many IT security organizations are short staffed and pushing the security team to its limits. As if this wasn’t bad enough, ESG data also points to 3 trends that exacerbate the security skills shortage further impacting the effectiveness of the precious few security personnel in place:

  1. Critical skills deficits. Along with the shortage of staff, many organizations report that their security staff lacks skills in critical areas such as network security, cloud computing/server virtualization security, mobile device security, and security analysis/forensics.
  2. Security staff time management. Large organizations indicate that one of their biggest problems is that their security professionals spend an inordinate amount of their time putting out fires. This limits the time for other more proactive security activities.
  3. Security tools complexity and lack of automation. Security vendors built tools rich in feature/functionality and designed for customization. Unfortunately, many large organizations don’t have the time or staff necessary to fine-tune them or develop expertise in their use.
Topics: IBM Cloud Computing Cybersecurity Information and Risk Management Dell McAfee Symantec Server Virtualization Enterprise Mobility Public Cloud Service Cloud Platforms & Services

Information Security: A Sobering Topic at VMworld

The technology industry is about to come together next week for VMworld in San Francisco. In the span of a few short years, this show has become a real showcase of the latest and greatest IT technology and industry vision. At VMware, every company wants its IT department to look like Amazon, Google, or Zynga, running applications on fully-automated and orchestrated cloud computing platforms, and easily managing thousands of servers and petabytes of data across multiple data centers.

Topics: Cloud Computing Microsoft Cybersecurity VMware Information and Risk Management VMworld Citrix CISO Server Virtualization Public Cloud Service Cloud Platforms & Services

Lobsters with a Side of Virtualized Storage Performance

If you're in the IT industry and you live in New England and you haven't heard about the Summer Slam, you should definitely consider attending this awesome event. If you've attended in the past, you've experienced the value of hanging out with your peers at one of the largest regional IT end-user groups in the country. Besides the knowledge that you gained from presentations from industry experts and vendors at the show, I'm sure you appreciated the great lobster boil that's free for qualified IT users. During my 11:00 session, you’ll learn about trends, technologies, tips, and tricks from the field based on ESG Lab hands-on testing in virtualized environments. And you’ll leave with a list of freely available storage benchmarking tools, best practices, and benchmark results with a goal of optimizing storage performance in your virtual environment.

Topics: Cloud Computing Storage IT Infrastructure Virtualization Server Virtualization Cloud Platforms & Services ESG Validation Services

Security Services Continue to Grow -- In the Enterprise

In my last blog, I presented some data about the extremely critical but often ignored security skills shortage. While 55% of enterprise organizations (i.e., more than 1,000 employees) plan to add information security headcount this year, 83% say it is "extremely difficult" or "somewhat difficult" to recruit and hire these folks.

Topics: IBM Cloud Computing EMC Cybersecurity Information and Risk Management SIEM Symantec RSA CISO mssp Server Virtualization Public Cloud Service Cloud Platforms & Services