IT will resist as long as they can, but when it comes to purchasing infrastructure for virtual computing environments and cloud computing initiatives, the do-it-yourself (DIY) model is becoming a thing of the past. Instead, the new IT consumption model is moving toward reference architectures or pre-configured solutions. Integrated computing consists of tightly integrated packages of servers, networking, and storage "glued together" by virtualization and intelligent management software designed, tested, and qualified to operate as a single unit.
As organizations begin to transition to an improved IT service model fueled by the success of server virtualization, integrated computing platforms will act as the conduit to connect on-premises virtual computing infrastructure with off-premises cloud solutions. This hybrid cloud model delivers a flexible consumption option that enables IT to maintain deployment and execution control of applications as well as to ensure optimum utilization of assets and resources. Achieving an improved IT service model will not happen with a simple flip of a switch, but investigating and investing in integrated computing platforms that match current virtualization demands and align with longer-term IT cloud strategies will be a valuable use of time and ultimately improve IT's ability to transact with the business to deliver resources on time and on budget.
You can read Mark's other blog entries at Liquefying IT.