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Cloud computing and the insatiable need for speed

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These days almost any organization’s public or private cloud has a global footprint, both in terms of infrastructure resources and its consumers. From a purely networking perspective, most organizations are still tottering along with woefully inadequate interconnections.

However, thanks to cutting-edge innovations in Wide Area Network (WAN) Acceleration and Optimization, IT Organizations have now been armed with the tools to break the vicious cycle of the hand twiddling and hair-pulling network slowness.

globe-with-codeNetwork performance issues and their business impact

As companies have continued to expand their global footprint, and along with the explosion of virtualization and network-centric tools, there has been a corresponding increase in bandwidth consumption and communication latency.

Most companies are at or close to a tipping point where their ability to meet the growing bandwidth demands is being outstripped by ever increasing cross-site collaboration needs.

The need for speed has become a global call to action for IT Network Teams.

Tracking down the problem

IT Network teams are challenged with balancing two critical but competing needs:

  • The need to improve network response times as the volume of data being pushed across the infrastructure grows exponentially
  • The need to manage the high cost of upgrading WAN links that enable this connectivity

It’s obvious that more innovative, faster and cheaper alternatives are needed to meet this issue head-on.  But just how does one break this cycle of lost productivity and inordinate wait times for simple file transfers to execute and this losing battle with half-year long WAN infrastructure upgrades?

  • The answer resides in the very commodity we so ubiquitously push across the wires all over the vast global Internetwork — the simple data packet.
  • More specifically, it lies in the ability to shape, optimize and increase data throughput (accelerate) these packets.
  • WAN Acceleration devices (Accelerators) enable the optimization of application and network protocol performance in a globally interconnected ecosystem.   

How WAN acceleration and packet optimization is helping

  • WAN accelerators and optimizers can improve IT customer productivity by significantly improving network-dependent application performance
  • Reducing time spent in the transfer of images, builds and tools across sites
  • A significant financial benefit can also be gained from investing in WAN Optimization with a reduction in site-specific capital spending by allowing remote sites to share hardware and platforms.
  • Data transfer rates between these sites can reach almost a local area network (LAN)-type performance and some of the eye-popping improvements in data transfer rates can be seen in the chart below

Visual representation of the orders of magnitude improvements in network performance through WAN Acceleration & Optimization:   

network-accelerationOutcome: Benefits of Wide Area Network Acceleration & Optimization 

  • WAN Acceleration and Optimization has been a significant boon to cross-site collaborative development,  software build and test communities by drastically:
    • speeding up data transfer rates
    • increasing application performance
    • reducing network latency
  • Any increase in additional bandwidth demand can now be quickly and cost effectively met with little to no significant loss of data throughput or connectivity between sites.

A side effect experienced with the adoption of WAN Acceleration & Optimization is that performance improvements garner unabashedly positive commentary, and feedback, from IT user communities.  It’s a nice PR win that reiterates the IT Organization’s commitment to the success and efficiency of its business customers!

How will you satisfy your need for speed?

Please leave a comment here, email me at mfarid@us.ibm.com or connect with me on Twitter (@GigaManz).

IBM Cloud, Middleware Labs

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