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Putting outages into the proper perspective

Putting outages into the proper perspective | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Which is worse: experiencing a cloud outage or waiting to experience a cloud outage? Last month, Azure storage services went down and caused customers in the U.S., Europe, and parts of Asia to suffer. As Gigaom’s Barb Darrow reported, several Azure users were not happy. Of course, a status page let users determine what exactly…
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The Attacks of the Future

The Attacks of the Future | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
What might the most damaging attacks of the future look like? The answer to the question may lie somewhere between the known patterns that attackers have established over the years, and signs that we are starting to see today.
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Tech Brief: Federal IT transformation takes on new dimensions with rise of multi-cloud

Tech Brief: Federal IT transformation takes on new dimensions with rise of multi-cloud | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
The convergence of agile development, containerization, microservices and DevOps is transforming the notion of migrating to the cloud — it’s no longer a destination, but instead it’s a larger, multi-cloud operating model, says a leading chief technologist in a new FedScoop Tech Brief.

Although moving to the cloud may have started as an exercise in lowering costs, the most forward-leaning federal enterprises now take a strategic approach to cloud computing and its business and digital transformation benefits, the report concludes. Those include speed, agility and responsiveness to agency mission requirements.

With this comes a fundamental shift in how agencies must think about the cloud, says Cameron Chehreh, chief technology officer at Dell EMC Federal, which is leading a push to help agencies visualize a roadmap to their next-generation enterprise.

The cloud is transforming into an operating model, not just a destination, Chehreh says.
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Azure NetApp Files Public Preview Has Arrived

Azure NetApp Files Public Preview Has Arrived | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it

Today, I’m thrilled to announce the Public Preview release of Azure NetApp Files. Jointly developed by Microsoft and NetApp, Azure NetApp Files is a native Azure service powered by NetApp’s leading ONTAP technology and storage expertise. It is designed to meet and exceed most organizational requirements for performance, scalability, data management, security and more.

Due to limited capacity, access to the preview is by invitation only. If you’re interested in joining the preview waitlist, visit the Azure NetApp Files Public Preview signup page. In the meantime, I encourage you to check out this blog written by Microsoft’s Andrew Chen for more information.

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NetApp, Cisco customize FlexPod technology for healthcare, other verticals

NetApp, Cisco customize FlexPod technology for healthcare, other verticals | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Cisco Systems Inc. and NetApp Inc. are turning their FlexPod technology, a pre-validated data center platform, into a vertical application. The move comes as the healthcare industry’s demands continue to increase for improved infrastructures, better latencies, and better performances, according to Arun Garg (pictured), director of product management for the Converged Infrastructure Group at NetApp Inc. FlexPod includes Cisco Unified Computing System servers, Cisco Nexus switches, and NetApp unified storage systems.

NetApp and Cisco have also begun to focus on the managed private cloud on FlexPod technology. Before a cloud can be built, however, a service, orchestration and monitoring platform all need to be created, as well as many more tools that need to be both created and integrated, Garg explained. Therefore, NetApp and Cisco have paired with different partners who have already created the cloud atmosphere for their customers.
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Top 3 Reasons to Use NetApp Cloud Volumes for AWS

Top 3 Reasons to Use NetApp Cloud Volumes for AWS | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it

You are responsible for finding new ways to accelerate your business, using data to drive real, bottom-line results. To do that, you want to migrate more and more on-premises workloads to the public cloud, yet you’re faced with differences in file formats, slow file-storage performance and the threat of inconsistent data. Plus, no one said all of this was cheap.  Ingress and egress charges continue to sky-rocket. The public clouds should be your saving grace, and services that live there should handle any workload you throw at them. You shouldn’t have to choose between things like high performance and data consistency. What if you could have multiprotocol cloud volumes with the performance and advanced features to run any workload? To go from zero to 100TB in 8 seconds, fully automated?  Now that’s a proper service!

Welcome to the world of NetApp Cloud Volumes, our native cloud service enabling file services, analytics, DevOps, enterprise applications, backup, and disaster recovery. So, why is this service right for you? Here are the top 3 reasons to use Cloud Volumes for AWS.

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10 do’s and don’ts for crafting more effective SLAs

10 do’s and don’ts for crafting more effective SLAs | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Do use common sense when crafting SLAs


Irrelevant or unrealistic service levels only make governance of the arrangement more difficult. Too many metrics will result in onerous overhead for everyone involved. Instead, “choose the few metrics that actually matter to deliver on desired business outcomes,” says Saurabh Gupta, chief strategy officer with outsourcing consultancy and analyst firm HfS Research “Be pragmatic and use SLAs to drive a hygiene level of performance.”

Aim for fewer, but more comprehensive service levels, advises Randy Wiele, managing director with KPMG’s shared services and outsourcing advisory. In addition, “all sides need to be honest about the tolerance for failure — it’s almost always higher than IT professionals think,” says Clay Calhoun, partner and leader of ISG’s sourcing advisory service. “This saves money in the provision of the services, and ensures the stakeholders understand why the service levels are as they are.”

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Why You Need the Cybersecurity Framework

Why You Need the Cybersecurity Framework | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
The U.S. National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST) recently released version 1.1 of the Cybersecurity Framework, and the security industry response is stronger than ever. Here are the facts – along with a front-line expert interview on what public and private sector organizations are doing now to plan and implement the new guidance.
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Why Docker is finally embracing Kubernetes

Why Docker is finally embracing Kubernetes | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Docker's mascot may be a whale, but Kubernetes was the elephant in the room before Dockercon Europe 2017. All three major cloud providers have joined Kubernetes' hosting open source foundation, the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), making the momentum undeniable.

The shift in the industry seemed to leave Docker Swarm on an island. Competitors such as Redhat's Openshift had long ago adopted Kubernetes and Docker finally boarded the Kubernetes train during Dockercon Europe 2017, announcing an integration with Kubernetes as part of its day one keynote.
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Build-Operate-Transfer: Helping Customers Operate Their Own OpenStack Cloud

Build-Operate-Transfer: Helping Customers Operate Their Own OpenStack Cloud | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
If you know anything about Rackspace and OpenStack, you know we deliver OpenStack as a managed service, because that provides the best experience for most customers.

Now, we’ve taken our services a step further, offering a “build-operate-transfer” model for those who eventually want to run their own private cloud, but just need some expert help getting there.

Rackspace pioneered the “as a service” consumption model for OpenStack, and we’ve been delivering our 99.99 percent OpenStack API uptime guarantee for years. Unlike any other provider in the industry, we have accumulated more than one billion server hours of experience managing OpenStack clouds at scale for many of the world’s largest and most respected companies. Our operational experience and expertise has established us as the number one OpenStack service provider, and we’re a “Leader” in The Forrester Wave: Hosted Private Cloud Services, North America, Q2 2017 report.
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6 hard truths IT must learn to accept

Sometimes the truth hurts.

It can be hard to admit that you've lost control over how your organization deploys technology, or that your network is porous and your code poorly written. Or no matter how much bandwidth you've budgeted for, it never quite seems to be enough, and that despite its bright promise, the cloud isn't the best solution for everything.

In a world where anyone with a credit card and keyboard can spin up their own data center, it's easy for CIOs to feel irrelevant and redundant.

Good luck with all that. The gap between your dreams and cold hard reality just gets wider every day. That doesn't mean you should give up, but it does mean you need to get real about what you can change and what you must accept.

Here are six hard truths CIOs must learn to live with.
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Getting data center managers & C-Suite on the same page for DCIM implementation - IT Peer Network

Getting data center managers & C-Suite on the same page for DCIM implementation - IT Peer Network | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
In any enterprise – large and small – bottom-line ROI is arguably the biggest factor driving business decisions. Whether switching from PCs to Macs, investing in new travel and expense management software or integrating data center solutions, every business unit, from HR to sales and IT, must prove the value that new processes and offerings will have on the enterprises’ bottom line. The problem? Getting buy-in from all business groups, from the C-Suite on down, can be a serious undertaking often halting or ceasing potential implementation. When it comes to the data center, no one knows this better than data center managers who must work tirelessly with C-Suite to showcase the value and benefits of next generations data center software solutions.

To shed light on motivations (or lack thereof) behind implementing a data center infrastructure management (DCIM) solution from both perspectives, Intel DCM and Schneider Electrics joined forces on research commissioned by Morar Consulting to dig a little deeper on the data center manager and C-Suite divide.
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Cost of Cloud Expertise Report by Rackspace

Cost of Cloud Expertise Report by Rackspace | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Is a lack of expertise stifling your investment in cloud computing? According to new research from the London School of Economics, the answer is probably yes.
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Is RDMA the Future of Data Center Storage Fabrics?

Is RDMA the Future of Data Center Storage Fabrics? | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
“The rise of RDMA use in storage networks (in particular NVMe over Fabric, since that seems to be the one that is going to become the standard in this arena) is needed to meet ever more stringent storage performance requirements of big data analytics -- in particular real-time workloads -- ever larger databases, and denser workload consolidation,” Eric Burgener, research director for enterprise storage at IDC, told us.

Although he added the caution that while “NVMe is the future, it is still immature,” Burgener predicted that “Over the next three to four years, external storage platforms will be moving more in the direction of NVMe in the protocol stack, with devices, array backplanes, controllers, and fabric.”
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The Evolving Enterprise Calculus Of Public Cloud Versus Private Infrastructure

The Evolving Enterprise Calculus Of Public Cloud Versus Private Infrastructure | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
There is clear enterprise consensus that hybrid cloud is the appropriate long-term strategic approach to best leverage cloud computing. There has been much less consensus in decision-making on the underlying use of public cloud versus private infrastructure for individual applications. I find that as an enterprise improves its recognition of the differences between infrastructures in feature capabilities and control of security and compliance, decision-making across the application portfolio matures into greater focus on cost efficiency for the breadth of applications it can operate on either type of infrastructure. Enterprises working from an oversimplified view of their options risk missing out on substantial opportunities for cost optimization.

Capabilities, control, and cost are the key factors in enterprise decisions on where to develop new applications and whether to migrate some of their existing applications in either direction between public cloud and private infrastructure. Over the first decade of cloud computing, the pendulum of adoption began with over-conservatism towards the public cloud, based mainly on concerns of control and steady-state workload cost. In the middle of the decade, the pendulum swung toward an aggressive public “cloud-first” approach for many early majority enterprise cloud adopters who aimed to maximize their use of public cloud while shrinking their private infrastructure footprint. High profile early innovators like GE and Netflix fueled this perspective routing capability benefits, including features and elasticity for operational agility, coupled with expected long-term cost advantages and improvements to control. The vast majority of enterprises have now settled into a middle ground approach with hybrid cloud based on their expectation of sustained control and cost benefits from private infrastructure for some of their application portfolio.
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How Can an ISAC Improve Cybersecurity and Resilience?

How Can an ISAC Improve Cybersecurity and Resilience? | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Sharing computer security threat information is now an established practice in IT. Whether automatically or manually, the primary motivator to pool resources is to improve your own capabilities and those of your peers for responding to security threats and incidents.

Another factor that can significantly improve your ability is sharing knowledge and experiences. As it happens, there are organizations designed explicitly for that: information sharing and analysis centers (ISACs).
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Software-Defined Networks Set the Stage for Data Center Transformations - EdTech

Software-Defined Networks Set the Stage for Data Center Transformations - EdTech | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Software-defined networks do more than enable next-gen capabilities for LANs and WANs. For many higher education institutions, SDNs are a building block for software-defined data center technology, a broader architecture with software controls that manage other critical components of IT operations. SDDC spans virtual machines and server clusters, security tools, and software-defined storage systems that combine multiple flash and spinning-disk drives into one big pool of available capacity. 
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Reskilling facilitates agile IT in the digital era

Reskilling facilitates agile IT in the digital era | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
CIOs are quickly learning that cultivating an agile IT organization requires out-of-the-box thinking in the age of digital transformation. That, along with the glaring talent shortage, is why many IT leaders are cross-training employees in other disciplines and domains.

Such "reskilling," as it's increasingly known, is driven by the need for increased velocity to drive competitive advantage. As a result, employees must familiarize themselves not only with new tools but the business processes required to support and drive business strategy.
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9 forces shaping the future of IT

9 forces shaping the future of IT | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
New technologies and approaches will free IT leaders to cut costs, save time and let machine intelligence do the heavy lifting.
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How to Assign a Monetary Value to a Security Solution

How to Assign a Monetary Value to a Security Solution | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Over the years, I’ve counseled numerous information security leaders on how to assign a monetary value to a security solution. It’s important to be able to speak in terms of protecting asset value because that is the language of the board of directors and other executive leaders who must approve a significant expense.

In many of these organizations, the security team has found a problem or discovered a serious vulnerability and they automatically think, “What’s the solution, what should we have in place?” They go out, do an RFP and buy a solution which they put in place to fix one particular problem. They never really take a good risk-based approach of the issue. What ends up happening is that the organization spends a dollar to save a nickel.
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New cyber range provides valuable training venue for Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs cyber security elements and private sector

New cyber range provides valuable training venue for Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs cyber security elements and private sector | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Members of Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM) and the Wisconsin National Guard were on hand at Madison Gas and Electric’s April 13 ceremony introducing a new cyber range facility that aims to train those tasked with protecting Wisconsin’s vital infrastructure against attacks, and restoring services quickly in the event of an attack that disrupts the power supply.

The cyber range provides a venue at which MG&E, other utilities and state cyber security officials — including Wisconsin Emergency Management and the Wisconsin National Guard — can test their capabilities in a controlled environment.

The cyber range opens in time for next month’s Dark Sky exercise, a large-scale, multi-agency disaster response exercise based on a scenario of a large-scale power outage caused by notional physical and cyber threats lasting up to three weeks in some areas. Dark Sky will test how the state would respond in such an emergency, and the new cyber range will serve as one of the exercise venues.
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Tread carefully before you lift and shift to the Cloud

Tread carefully before you lift and shift to the Cloud | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
I've talked about VMware Cloud (VMC) on AWS for a few weeks since the GA release during VMworld 2017. The solution is unique in that Amazon doesn't modify its data center design for any partner. VMC on AWS required the two companies to work together to make two very different data center designs work. The solution raises the question around lift and shift as a cloud migration strategy. 
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Don’t get caught in the ‘hype cycle’ of blockchain

Don’t get caught in the ‘hype cycle’ of blockchain | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it

The hottest new federal buzzword is blockchain. You can’t got to a conference without a session on or someone talking about this emerging technology.

But as one vendor, who cornered me recently after a session on blockchain, asked, “Is any agency actually doing anything around blockchain or are they just talking about it?”

That’s a fair question and one I didn’t have an answer for.

It’s clear from the Gartner hype cycle that blockchain is past the “peak of inflated expectations,” and heading into the “trough of disillusionment.”

But before we all jump on the bandwagon and begin holding “blockchain conferences” or create an “Office of Blockchain,” or head in the other direction and decide blockchain was the SEAT management of the 2000s or QR codes of the 2010s, let’s step back and understand some of the potential of blockchain.

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Could updated controls from NIST drive up cloud security costs?

Could updated controls from NIST drive up cloud security costs? | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Among the biggest complaints about the cloud security program known as the Federal Risk Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) have been the cost for vendors and the time it takes to get approved.

The FedRAMP program management office has tried to address both over the last few years, most recently introducing the Tailored program for low-impact, software-as-a-service offerings last month.

But now the program management office is concerned that many of those advances could be at risk with the updated security controls from the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
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Dell makes $1bn bet that IoT at the edge can kill cloud computing takeover

Dell makes $1bn bet that IoT at the edge can kill cloud computing takeover | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Analysis Dell is going full tilt into the Internet of Things market, setting up a new division and promising to invest $1bn in IoT R&D over three years to build the business.

At a New York announcement event, Dell said it foresaw an Internet of "intelligent" Things – devices from phones to cars to oil rigs to robots to heart monitors – located at the edge of the internet. All of them generate data, some collected by sensors, which will be used to help them and the systems which use them to operate better.

It presumes there will be a Distributed Core model of computing where edge devices and systems need to respond in real time to operate effectively.

Dell chairman and CEO Michael Dell used the example of a deer running out in front of a self-driving car. If the car has to wait for a public (off-device) cloud to receive sensor data, recognise a deer, discern there is the danger of a collision, and direct the car to avoid the collision, then the collision will have happened before the cloud can respond.
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Don’t take Oracle’s cloud-computing superiority claims too seriously

Don’t take Oracle’s cloud-computing superiority claims too seriously | Current issues in information technology | Scoop.it
Oracle CEO Mark Hurd claims he doesn’t “really worry so much about” Amazon Web Services. That statement is either profoundly disingenuous or utterly ridiculous. Or perhaps Hurd and Oracle chairman Larry Ellison, who launched this week’s Oracle OpenWorld by fixating on AWS, trying mightily to convince attendees that AWS’s cloud pales in comparison to Oracle’s cloud.

You know, the same Oracle cloud that can’t even muster a Top 10 place in Gartner’s list of leading IaaS providers. For IaaS, Gartner pegs AWS cloud revenues at more than 80X times Oracle’s. Even in the PaaS market, where Oracle has seen more growth—bumping up from 1.1 percent market share to 2 percent in 2016—it’s still just a tenth the size of AWS, which saw its PaaS share boom from 13.7 percent to 19.8 percent in the same period.
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