Container technologies are not a new concept; it has been around for a while. In this blog, I will take a closer look at Linux based containers like LXC and Docker , which are gaining momentum in the fast changing cloud landscape. Docker is built on open source container capabilities and encapsulates the application which runs in its own isolated process on the host operating system, a great feature for people concerned with cloud security. This has a potential for disruptive innovation in the cloud as it is very different from a traditional VM based model enabling acceleration of continuous delivery process and application isolation solutions.
Now, let’s compare this work docker which is a light weight , quick provisioing alternative without the need for a hyper visor . As the containers share the OS image, we can run lot more applications on the server , also giving ability to snap shot the OS into a common image when combined with IBM patterns technology. Either case, container technologies seem to be a good bet for applications that need speed and light wight application deployment in an isolated container.
It is important to note that, there is no guest operating system or a hyper visor in this model, and makes it a good fit for light weight applications , which needs to run on low resources , on edge nodes etc . These kind of container technologies can be applied to isolate applications that need to be provisioned in quickly like... [Continue Reading]
In 2014, all of our blogs published on the software defined site were unique in their own respective ways. The year saw some great announcements and showcased perhaps the most exciting events around IT Infrastructure. The importance of cloud computing and why companies are moving towards cloud computing was clearly evident as it became the buzzword for 2014. No discussion, no talks and no event were complete without cloud computing being a part of it. We thank all our SMEs, contributors and our readers for giving us a tremendous response in 2014.
In this post, we take a recap at some of our top blogs which were well received by the audience and had huge readership throughout the year. Let’s take a look:
10) What if you could attend IBM Pulse 2014 for free?
The blog presented an exciting opportunity for the audience to attend Pulse 2014 which was held from February 23-26 at MGM Grand, Las Vegas for free. All that was needed from the readers was to register with code PULSE14PEEK* for a Pulse Peek Pass to experience the premier cloud conference’ general sessions and expo hall with hundreds of solutions. The Pulse Peek pass included the expo and three days of general sessions spotlighting industry thought leaders and customer speakers.
9) IBM Pulse 2014: A successful cloud experience all around
IBM Pulse 2014 , the Premier... [Continue Reading]
In just a short span, big data has become one of the core disruptors of the new digital age. This year we saw many big data initiatives inside the enterprises and 2015 is going to be no exception. As big data continue to evolve, cio.com predicts five major developments which will dominate big data technology in the New Year. Let’s take a look:
1. Data Agility Emerges as a Top Focus
Data agility has been one of the big drivers behind the development of big data technologies. In 2015, data agility will become even more central as organization shift their focus from simply capturing and managing data to actively using it.
2. Organizations Move from Data Lakes to Processing Data Platforms
Data Lake will continue to evolve in 2015 with the capability to bring multiple compute and execution engines to the data lake to process the data in-place. The big trend in 2015 will be around the continuous access and processing of events and data in real-time to gain constant awareness and take immediate action.
3. Self-Service Big Data Goes Mainstream
In 2015, IT will embrace self-service big data to allow business users self-service to big data and empower developers, data scientists and data analysts to conduct data exploration directly.
4. Hadoop Vendor Consolidation: New Business Models Evolve
Open Source Software (OSS) adoption has provided tremendous value to the market. Cio.com believes 2015 will see the evolution of a new,... [Continue Reading]
By now, through all the discussions around, one point is clear – IT infrastructure matters more than anything. Today’s continuing IT infrastructure conversation between business and IT leaders is about more than technology – it’s about the future of the business. And to better understand the conversations, IBM Institute for Business Value (IBV) recently surveyed 750 IT executives from across the globe which resulted in two reports.
The reports – The IT infrastructure conversation: New content, new participants, new tone and Continuing the IT infrastructure conversation:
Why building a strong foundation requires more than technology are an absolute eye-opener for organizations to take right decisions about their IT infrastructures today. Let’s take a look at some of the key findings of the reports:
More than 70% of executives believe IT infrastructure plays an important role in enabling competitive advantage or optimizing revenue and profit
Over 60% of organizations plan to increase their IT infrastructure investment over the next 12-18 months
Only 22 percent of organizations have a well-defined enterprise IT infrastructure strategy and roadmap
Only 30 percent are successful at collaborating with the business to provide IT infrastructure solutions to... [Continue Reading]
Recently, IBM's Richard Goldgar, Client Architect, blogged on Thoughtsoncloud.com to offer top ten tips for CIOs looking to move to the cloud. Let’s take a look at the tips he suggested that could help CIOs better succeed in their cloud efforts:
Stop being religious
According to Richard, cloud is about making things “fast, anywhere, now” (he calls this as FAN), while saving costs and simplifying IT. Richard suggests cloud should help us broaden, not narrow, our horizons while we keeping in mind our existing architecture and IT goals.
Pay careful attention to total cost of ownership
Richard suggests make conscious choices about any compromises. Make sure we compare our current real costs (staff, equipment, software licensing, cost of security risks and others) with the cloud options.
Security should be at the center
It is always advisable to start moving to the cloud only a few things for example a small application with few security requirements or perhaps office automation tools.
To start with, try something simple that does not require a lot of security or technical IT support.
Find the low-hanging fruit
To start with, try something simple that does not require a lot of security or technical IT support.
Choose your friends carefully
Choosing the right cloud vendor is very important... [Continue Reading]
Did you know: Building a strong foundation for your organization requires more than just leading technology? Our recently released Institute for Business Value: “ Continuing the IT infrastructure conversation ,” examines just that. The study reveals that IT must also collaborate with other parts of the business in order to successfully capitalize on IT trends and turn them into competitive advantage. According to the study:
70 percent of companies recognize that IT infrastructure plays an important role in enabling competitive advantage or optimizing revenue and profit, but
Only 22 percent have a well-defined enterprise IT infra¬structure strategy, and
Only 23 percent are successful at collect¬ing, analyzing and documenting performance measures
From the study, one point that stands out – IT infrastructure matters and it matters more than ever. Increasingly, organizations across the world are under immense pressure and looking for directions to help them make the right decisions about their IT infrastructures in order to adapt to the ever-changing market place.
Is your IT infrastructure ready?
Join us for a Twitter chat tomorrow where our leading experts will be talking about the need for IT organizations to position themselves not just as service providers, but also trusted advisors, as well as answer all of your infrastructure-related questions... [Continue Reading]
While the most important five-day shopping period of the year in US is about to begin, retailers and marketers are all set to welcome shoppers from across the world. Yet, once again, big data and analytics remains the most important tool in their arsenal – and the closest thing they have to a crystal ball.
As shoppers become more comfortable using both their fingers and feet to lock in the best deals, the challenge for marketers is to use real-time analytics to give customers a personalized, seamless experience regardless of how they browse and buy. The advent of mobile devices as the new digital shopping aide is putting pressure on marketers to understand not just their mobile habits but how it impacts other in-store and online behavior. From browsing on a tablet before Thanksgiving dinner to using a smartphone to comparison shop on Black Friday while standing in the store, customers today expect the retailers they do business with to understand their unique preferences and behaviors.
To better understand the value of real-time analytics in unlocking these insights, Forbes.com recently interviewed Kevin Bishop, who leads IBM’s ExperienceOne marketing and customer engagement portfolio. In this article, Kevin answers some of the challenges that marketers face in analyzing the massive volumes of customer data that is available today and explains how IBM platforms and latest technologies are helping... [Continue Reading]
We all are reading about IT Infrastructure and how it is at the core of everything which is happening today. But are organizations really leveraging it effectively? A large amount of revenue is lost by companies each year because of their inability to use their IT Infrastructure effectively. Let’s face it - the fact remains Infrastructure Matters .
Our recent study titled Continuing the IT infrastructure conversation: Why building a strong foundation requires more than technology , shows a lot of interesting findings:
Only 22 percent of organizations have a well-defined enterprise IT infrastructure strategy and roadmap
Only 30 percent are successful at collaborating with the business to provide IT infrastructure solutions to support their business needs
Only 23 percent are successful at collecting, analyzing and documenting performance measures
And only 39 percent are successful at supporting cross-functional teams of infrastructure domain experts to identify, source and implement IT infrastructure solutions.
Companies feel they know it all and they are ahead in the race. But the questions remain if everyone knows everything, why isn’t the IT Infrastructure being used to put Big Data and Analytics to work faster and efficiently?
If you are looking for answers around how to leverage Big Data, Real-time analytics and... [Continue Reading]
Nothing stays the same. Change is the one constant in our world, especially in the world of information technology (IT). This paradigm certainly holds true for the storage software technology that until recently was known as IBM General Parallel File System (GPFS) . It has changed, and continues to evolve to meet evolving challenges faced by enterprises around the globe. To reflect these significant changes, GPFS is now known as Elastic Storage. Rapid evolution is also the rule with another intriguing IT technology – flash storage. IBM FlashSystem represents the culmination of many years of very successful solid state storage engineering. When combined, these two complementary technologies offer a new and very powerful solution for a wide spectrum of enterprise storage challenges.
Elastic Storage has its roots in solving the storage and processing challenges found in high performance computing (HPC) environments. For example, if you needed to efficiently and simultaneously process the thousands of individual files involved in sequencing human genomes, Elastic Storage couldn’t be matched for this task. And it still can’t. But times have changed, and so has Elastic Storage. Now Elastic Storage offers solutions for a wide range of workloads to enterprises of all types and sizes.
Cloud, analytics, mobile, and social environment offers a good example of how Elastic Storage now offers industry leading advantages in... [Continue Reading]
Today, enterprises are looking to leverage their systems, applications and data to provide new services for their clients across data center boundaries using hybrid cloud for private and public cloud interaction.
A recently prototyped solution demonstrates an OpenStack based environment using HEAT based templates and policy resource scheduling to deploy a cloud application to a private cloud running on IBM Power Systems with connectivity to a public cloud on IBM’s SoftLayer running IBM Worklight Mobile Services.
The solution showcases ease of deployment and management capabilities using "IBM UrbanCode Deploy with Patterns" tooling and " IBM Cloud Manager with OpenStack " administration.
The solution also showcases Cloud Mobile Services with connectivity back to an on premise OpenStack deployed environment.
Key benefits of this solution:
a) Linking on premise systems of records with off premise next-generation systems of engagement
b) Automation of application and workload development, deployment in a hybrid cloud
c) Extending Private cloud with Public cloud for new mobile services.
d) Ability to easily add new feature to systems of engagement (e.g. location based services to mobile applications)
e) Increased application/workload performance and resiliency due to elasticity of hybrid cloud
... [Continue Reading]
Today, Mobile is more than just another business channel - It is fundamentally changing the business landscape. Executives need to stay in touch 24x7 with what is happening in their businesses. These always-on, smart, connected devices have become the mobile office, enabling users to make smarter decisions at the right time. Mobile is also driving real-time and personalized business analytics that enable retailers to offer geographical and content-specific offers to encourage customers to make that purchase decision in the “mobile moment.” Can your infrastructure, business analytics, and systems of record cope with the increasing real-time demands of the mobile phenomenon? Are your systems and data easily accessible yet secure?
Are you looking for the right answer?
Join us for the exciting complimentary webcast and learn how many IBM clients across the world have benefited from IBM mobile solutions for System z . During the webcast, which is happening tomorrow, November 11th at 11 AM EST, we will discuss how System z scales to meet the unpredictable transaction peaks and growths of a mobile channel without having to re-architect the infrastructure . You will also be able to learn about the role of DB2® for z/OS® and IMS™, with their built-in integration capabilities that enable simplified access for mobile development and deployment. Finally, we’ll also show how you can drive business analytics closer to real-time by... [Continue Reading]
Recently, Synergy Research Group named IBM the number one hybrid and private cloud provider for the enterprise and positioned IBM among the top three providers in the cloud market for the third quarter of 2014.
With Synergy Research’s findings around growth specific to Infrastructure-as-a-Service , Platform-as-a-Service , hybrid and private cloud , IBM Cloud is driving growth through extensive gains with significant enterprise recent client engagements in a variety of industries.
As part of the announcement, IBM introduced a series of global enterprises clients turning to IBM to tap into new opportunities with cloud in industries ranging from telecommunications, publishing and security:
Korean e-publishing company, Artgrafii, has deployed its platform that creates and distributes professional content on the IBM Cloud to enable it to store, edit and manage online content more effectively as it expands outside of Korea. Additionally, Artgrafii is using IBM Bluemix for fast product enhancements and new service development.
IBM is partnering with one of the Netherland’s largest telecommunications services providers, KPN , to extend its cloud services in the Dutch market.
With data center capacity across the Netherlands, IBM will provide KPN and their end users cloud services that not only meet in-country data residency requirements, but will also offer them the ultimate... [Continue Reading]
Insight2014 – IBM’s global conference is making waves at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. At Insight 2014, more than 13,000 industry leaders and practitioners from around the world have gathered to explore the latest developments and strategies in infrastructure matters, cloud, mobile, social, security and cognitive computing in more than 1,500 deep-dive sessions.
Let’s take a look at some of the exciting sessions of today Thursday, October 30th, 2014 that might interest you:
Session Name & Speaker(s)
Bank of America dramatically
Improves Loss Forecasting
With SAS BA Workloads
-‐ Dana Rafiee, CEO of
South Pacific B
Maximizing the Life and
Uptime of Bank Assets
By exploiting 24x7 DB2
Analytic Warehousing on
Power Systems -‐
Rui Feng Gao, IBM; Xiao
Wei Zhang, IBM; Hui Lin, IBM;
Hui Zhang, IBM; Jing Fang,
South Seas C
Analyzing Social Media in
Support of Law Enforcement,
Intelligence, & Public Safety
With Big Data & Analytics
-‐ Bernard Beekman, IBM;
LV... [Continue Reading]
According to IBM's recent Institute for Business Value study - IT infrastructure conversation: New content, new participants, new tone study, 71 percent of organizations surveyed believe IT infrastructure enables a competitive advantage. While two-thirds of organizations are planning to increase IT infrastructure investment spending and only less than one-third of IT executives believe they are effectively collaborating with the business to provide IT infrastructure solutions.
Moreover, organizations do believe that the right infrastructure choices can help them improve overall business outcomes and bring new value to their organizations. There are many misconceptions about IT infrastructure—what it can do and what it can't—especially in terms of cloud and big data and analytics deployments. Can infrastructure make a difference? If so, how? Join us at Insight2014 global conference, which is happening at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas from October 26-30, 2014.
At Insight2014, you'll explore the latest developments and strategies in infrastructure matters, cloud, mobile, social, security and cognitive computing in more than 1,500 deep-dive sessions with more than 13,000 industry leaders from around the world.
The Infrastructure Matters Zone at IBM Insight2014 will help you get all the latest, insights, demonstrations, information and news about... [Continue Reading]
On Wednesday, October 22, IBM will host its sixth Video Debates series: What’s Next for IT Infrastructure?, that brings together top IT experts to discuss the latest topics and trends on cloud, data and security as they relate to infrastructure.
During the video debate, the panelists will probe, discuss and debate the question, “Does IT infrastructure determine business success?” The debate will feature leading panelists including Joe Clabby, Adien Bowles, Anna Topol and will be moderated by Judith Hurwitz, a leading technology strategist. All of these experts will debate the role of IT infrastructure, how a company’s IT infrastructure is key to managing today’s quickly changing world and more.
Don’t miss this exciting opportunity. Register now and join us on Wednesday October 22nd, 2014 at 1 PM EDT to hear from leading IT infrastructure experts. Be sure to follow the conversation at #IMdebate to keep track of the latest updates around the debate.
Here are detailed profiles of our moderator and panelists:
Judith Hurwitz: President and CEO of Hurwitz & Associates, LLC – Moderator
Judith leads Hurwitz & Associates, LLC, a research and consulting firm focused on emerging technology including big data, cloud computing, service management, software development, computing management and security. She is a technology strategist, thought leader and author. Judith has... [Continue Reading]
Is your IT infrastructure fully prepared to meet the demands of the rapidly changing and converging technologies? If not, here’s an exciting opportunity for you. IBM Insight2014 global conference brings you an ideal platform, which will help you learn how building the right IT infrastructure makes a big difference for your business. At Insight2014, from October 26-30 at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas, leading IT and business experts across the globe will gather to deliver insights on some of the hot topics of today like how data has transformed business analytics, information management and enterprise content management and more.
The Insight curriculum is aligned to three programs that encompass 15+ tracks which help frame sessions and content throughout the event. These include:-
Business Analytics: - Discover the latest advancements in analytics strategies, from business intelligence, data discovery and predictive analytics to performance management and risk analytics.
Enterprise Content Management: - Learn how to manage a growing diversity of incoming information and extract value for deep insight, enhanced customer experience and business growth.
Information Management:- Explore how to use big data to build modern information management architecture while becoming more agile, efficient and competitive.
In addition to this, special category and solution topics and roadmaps will highlight key... [Continue Reading]
Today, the IT infrastructure matters more than ever to clients across industries and geographies. The emergence of cloud, analytics, mobile, social and security technology bringing new challenges and new opportunities for organizations – large, medium or small. By having the right infrastructure in place, clients are able to concentrate on many other activities to jump-start new growth and profitability for their businesses.
For instance, click on this infographic to see the roles cloud, analytics, mobile, social and security solutions play in creating a robust, innovative infrastructure within an organization. The infographic is an ideal example which details how the right infrastructure frees the retailer to scale with demand and drive business growth.
What about you? Share your infrastructure related experience with us. Join the conversation at #infrastructurematters or follow @IBMSDE on Twitter.
IBM Systems & Technology Group
As business evolves so is the role of the CIO (Chief Information Officer). Today’s CIO is in an ideal position to take increasing responsibility and control. The CIO is one of the important hubs of decision-making across organizations today. I spend a good amount of my time speaking to CIOs across industries, listening to what challenges they face and how those challenges have changed since the role came into its real days about 10 years ago.
As technology advancements like cloud , analytics and cognitive computing have increased their impact across today’s organizations, the role of the CIO has evolved along with it. Most of the CIOs I speak with are uniquely qualified to lead a cloud strategy; this is because of their intricate knowledge of both IT and business. While in-depth understanding of technology is critical, no less important is the ability to articulate the business impacts and opportunities of cloud computing and big data to the C-suite. CIOs should prudently evaluate all IT capabilities, organizational design, and create a roadmap for change to identify new opportunities that will deliver the best return on investment aligned with their business strategy and mission needs. Increasingly, I have observed that finding the right platform to learn is the top priority for CIOs.
The CIO Washington D.C. Summit is a unique opportunity for the greatest IT thinkers to collaborate on current industry challenges... [Continue Reading]
IT infrastructure matters more than ever. The need to develop and manage a simplified, adaptive and responsive infrastructure has emerged as a top priority for organizations today. Let’s take a look at some of the common infrastructure challenges as well as the strategic actions organizations are taking to create a robust IT infrastructure:
There’s no room for failure
It’s critical that organizations make the right decisions about IT environments—decisions that don’t compromise the business or put it at risk for financial or security failure. As demands on IT infrastructure continue to increase, organizations that invest now in a diverse cloud infrastructure built on openechnologies will find they have agility and choice as well as the ability to speed business transformation.
Organizations can act strategically by:
Carefully matching applications to optimal sets of compute, storage and network resources
Implementing tools that can manage heterogeneous environments securely and efficiently
Innovate or fall behind
Getting better insights faster from structured and unstructured data can bring tremendous value to any organization, but most aren’t prepared to address big data and analytics challenges such as providing consistent and secure interfaces or getting the right data to the right people.
Organizations can act strategically by:
Choosing... [Continue Reading]
Today’s IT organizations face immense challenges. We often hear our clients telling us that in order to compete they must invest in their IT infrastructures to improve customer service, enable better decisions through improved use of data and enhance collaboration across their value chain. It means IT infrastructure matters - not just to IT but fundamentally to business.
But how to make sure that the infrastructure choice that we make is right? It doesn’t have to be hard! Here are top 6 infrastructure choices that can solve business challenges:
1. Implement real-time analytics: Today's infrastructures need to build data analytics and intelligence into their daily operations and transactions.
2. Empower employees with access to customer information: Your infrastructure needs to enable shared (and secure!) access to all data, no matter what type it is or where it resides.
3. Accelerate reaction time: When you react quickly to situations (enabled by Big Data & Analytics ), you can create up to 33% higher revenue growth.
4. Gain continuous access to essential tools: Today's leading companies are 2.4x more likely to use cloud infrastructure solutions to reinvent customer relationships. Cloud brings you scalability and reliability, enabling continuous access to applications.
5. ... [Continue Reading]
Recently, Thoughtsoncloud.com published a very interesting blog by Mike McGuire, Senior IT Architect for IBM SmartCloud Enterprise, which talks about choosing between managed and unmanaged IaaS . According to Mike, Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) typically comes in one of two forms: managed or unmanaged. Obviously, some providers also offer something in between. Usually, a provider will tend to specialize in one, although some providers can offer both. For instance, the IBM Cloud Managed Services IaaS offering specializes in managed servers, but can also offer unmanaged servers as well.
Further, Mike helps our readers to understand the key differences between the two.
Features that we will commonly find with a managed cloud server:
Operating system deployment and management
Monitoring (and action in the event of an incident)
Backup and restore services
Disaster recovery and storage services
Limited access to the operating system, or controlled access
Operating system-based service level agreements (SLAs)
Features that we will commonly find with an unmanaged cloud server:
Operating system deployment
Complete control of the operating system
Hypervisor or infrastructure-only SLAs
“This list is not exhaustive, nor does it accurately describe every cloud... [Continue Reading]
Recently, Forbes.com published a very interesting article titled; “ What's Right For Your Business? Private, Public, or Hybrid Cloud? ”, featuring Jeff Borek , Worldwide Program Director for Cloud Computing at IBM. In the article, Jeff talks about how cloud computing affect our business and which cloud model- private, public or hybrid is effective to implement in the business.
According to Jeff, for the past five plus years, businesses have debated: How will cloud computing affect our business? Is it best to adopt a public cloud approach, or opt for a private cloud solution? Not unlike a political debate, there have been highly motivated players on both sides of the argument, lobbying aggressively for their point of view. While the pro-public cloud crowd has long argued that the only way to go is with an ability to consume IT and related services on a pay-per-use model, the pro-private camp is quick to remind clients that enabling private cloud capabilities—either on site or in a privately hosted environment—provides the highest levels of management visibility, control, security, privacy and physical proximity to data.
So, what’s the right answer? The article describes three things that today’s business leaders are realizing about cloud computing:
1. Neither private nor public clouds are going away any time soon. IDC, a leading research firm,... [Continue Reading]
Recently, the thoughtsoncloud.com published a very interesting article: Three ways to stay up to date while working in IT , featuring Oscar Vega Rodriguez, Cloud Linux System Administrator for IBM Smart Cloud Application Services. The article explains the three influential ways to keep abreast with the latest developments in cloud computing while working in IT. Let’s take a look at those three recommendations explained by Oscar to follow in order to stay informed:
We can browse many websites, blogs and even mobile applications that are available that can help us understand new technologies emerging in the cloud world. Oscar use a browser add-on named Feedly and a mobile app available for both iPhone and Android named Zite . They are like intelligent magazines that let us find the most frequently read articles on a specific topic. We can favorite topics like cloud computing, IBM Cloud, OpenStack, KVM, IBM Bluemix and more.
2. Get your hands dirty:
This has to do with some practical jobs like - if we want to get familiar with OpenStack , it would be a good idea to start reading on how to set up an environment. We would find out what architecture requirements are needed (hardware specs, most recommended virtualization client) and get to know all the services the solution offers, like dashboard (Horizon), compute (Nova) and image (Glance) in the last OpenStack release, IceHouse. Once we have... [Continue Reading]
Software-defined is emerging as a hot topic among organizations as a means to transform data centers into an IT facility focused on increasing the agility and speed at which they support their application and increase developer productivity. Now that software-defined has become the everyday talk for many IT professionals and business leaders, we have identified some of the most common questions they are asking about software-defined environments. And to help answer those questions in a more effective way, I recently interviewed one of the most influential personalities in a software-defined world: Matt Hogstrom , who is also a Distinguished Engineer and a Chief Technology Officer at IBM. Here are his excerpts:
Q.1) We’re seeing different software-defined terms being used in the industry like software-defined data center, software-defined infrastructure, etc. What does IBM mean when it comes to software-defined?
Matt: Software-defined at its core means a programmatic access to infrastructure. Over the past few years, the industry has shifted from traditional IT to an API driven consumption model of infrastructure. At IBM, we are considering the consumers, as well as the providers of programmatic infrastructure and use the term Software Defined Environment (SDE) to refer to the architecture. The Software Defined Environment framework transforms static infrastructure into a dynamic, constantly optimized, workload-aware virtualized... [Continue Reading]
IBM’s newly released Institute of Business Value study - IT infrastructure conversation: New content, new participants, new tone, highlighted some of the mind-boggling findings on why IT infrastructure matters. Based on the responses from over 750 senior executives from 19 industries across 18 countries, the study reveals how confident technology leaders are about their IT infrastructure, what worries them the most and what they are doing to make their IT infrastructure fit for the future while capitalizing on the new – but challenging – opportunities for growth. Some of the key findings of the study include:
71 percent of organizations believe IT infrastructure enables a competitive advantage
Two-thirds of organizations are planning to increase IT infrastructure investment spending
Less than one-third of IT executives believe they are effectively collaborating with the business to provide IT infrastructure solutions
Indeed, the conversation about the IT infrastructure is changing. You can register for the study here .
To continue the conversation, we invite you to join us for the exclusive Twitter #infrachat happening live tomorrow, Wednesday August 13 at 11 AM EDT. Hosted by @IBMSmrtrCmptng , the #infrachat will look at how IT infrastructure is changing organizations today and in the future. The panelists include industry leading experts - John Easton , Distinguished... [Continue Reading]
IBM continues to demonstrate its thought leadership in the Mobility space. Recently on Wednesday August 6th 2014, IBM announced that Gartner has acknowledged IBM as a leader in the 2014 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Managed Mobility Services (MMS) . For the report, Gartner evaluated 14 worldwide vendors, recognizing IBM as the only leader based on its completeness of vision and ability to execute. IBM’s market leading IT and business consulting services are dedicated to bringing mobile capabilities to businesses by helping them select the right technologies for their unique needs in order to spur adoption and drive positive business outcomes. Part of the IBM MobileFirst portfolio, IBM’s mobility services enables clients to build and deploy mobile applications, protect and manage mobile infrastructure, and engage customers in context. IBM is helping companies across the globe unlock the full potential of enterprise mobility with solutions built right from the ground up to not migrated from the desktop to solve complex problems and improve outcomes at every moment.
“ We believe that being named the only leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant recognizes our commitment to mobilizing today’s businesses and transforming their operations both now and in the future,” said Rich Esposito, General Manager, IBM Global Mobility Services. “Like the Internet before it, mobile... [Continue Reading]
I am writing this blog as a summary of the very interesting article published recently on Forbes.com : “ What’s The Best Cloud For Companies? Try Hybrid ” featuring Lance Crosby, CEO and President, IBM SoftLayer. The article focuses on the benefits that a hybrid model can bring to organizations migrating to the cloud and integrating systems of records with systems of engagement driven by big data & analytics, social and mobile trends. The article also explains how deploying a hybrid cloud model that links a mix of both private and public cloud resources with a company's on-premise IT infrastructure will enable organizations to improve concerns over data control and security while continuing to enjoy the cost and scalability benefits of the cloud.
According to Lance, “a hybrid cloud creates an environment in which companies can maintain on-premises control of certain applications and data, while determining which applications belong in the cloud.” “The hybrid approach minimizes change, helps to reduce costs and enables more scalable and flexible business processes.” In the article, Lance also cites Whirlpool as an example of an IBM customer who is taking advantage of a hybrid model to improve their operations. Read the full article here to learn more and discover how a hybrid model brings the best of both worlds for organizations as they move to the cloud. For... [Continue Reading]
Recently, Forbes.com has published a very interesting article titled: Three Ways Companies Can Convert To Cloud Computing , featuring Tom Rosamilia, Senior Vice President for IBM Systems & Technology Group and Integrated Supply Chain. The article discusses why leading organizations are turning to cloud and the role IT infrastructure plays in enabling growth in a world of cloud, mobile and social technologies. These technologies are changing the way we interact and engage with our customers, creating unpredictable ebbs and flows of connections across an array of technologies and systems. In order to handle the unparalleled volume of data we’re generating, these systems need to be reliable, economical and secure. And more and more organizations are moving to cloud computing to meet those needs. In the article, Tom describes three strategic considerations for successfully deploying a cloud model:
Ensure a flexible IT environment: Organizations must be flexible to embrace the new workload requirements of mobile and social applications. A dynamic hybrid cloud model provides flexibility and allows organizations to respond quickly to support changing business needs.
Build analytics-ready systems : It’s imperative for businesses to identify the right technology and the right time to apply for business advantage. An analytics-based environment enables organizations to handle... [Continue Reading]
As an IBM Cloud Architect for the past 6 years I have focused on the development, delivery and the maturity of cloud computing implementation with clients, partners and service providers. Recently the focus of “Hybrid” cloud services and implementations has seen a sharp rise as a strategic initiative for many clients.
By the industry definition, hybrid cloud provides services extending your data center to off premise private and public cloud. Hybrid cloud should leverage your investment in a common infrastructure model, operational management, user experience and skills. Hybrid cloud allows you to deploy and run your applications onsite, offsite, or in both combination. Likewise, hybrid cloud model that you adopt should ensure your cloud users have no need to rewrite applications or change APIs and have consistent user experience across deployment environments on-premise and off-premise.
Taking a closer look at off-premise cloud models, many enterprises concerned with control points, security and isolation consider using a dedicated private cloud tied into their on-premise data center. This environment provides single-tenant, isolated compute resources, and administration control. This can be combined with additional managed services provided through a cloud service provider or self-managed directly by the enterprise tenant. A dedicated private cloud can be ideal for DevOps and production workloads. Another common model is a... [Continue Reading]
In my first post , I discussed how combining Software Defined Environments (SDE) and deployment automation reduces application delivery time and increases agility. In this post, I look at these capabilities in greater depth.
In summary they deliver the following benefits:
SDE combines OpenStack-based Software Defined Infrastructure (SDI) with application patterns to repeatably and reliably create the application environments for each stage of the delivery pipeline.
Deployment automation stream-lines deployment of applications into development, test and production environments via automation and elimination of manual tasks.
This SDE enabled approach to application delivery is illustrated in the figure reproduced here.
Deployment automation and application lifecycle
Deployment automation is central to enabling IT organizations to accelerate delivery by the elimination of manual tasks. As shown above, it automates environment creation via the SDE layer and perform application deployment, along with component tracking and versioning.
These tools also manage the configuration of each SDE environment, database and application component, ensuring repeatable and consistent delivery. This is an end-to-end solution from test environments, through to production. The approach tests the deployment and configuration process as much as the application code itself, eliminating... [Continue Reading]
IBM recently announced Elastic Storage on Cloud , a software defined storage-as-a-service offering on IBM SoftLayer that provides high performance data management and storage in the cloud to organizations as well as seamless data transfer between their on-premise infrastructure and the cloud. Optimized for technical computing and analytics workloads, Elastic Storage on Cloud offers more storage capability at lower cost by meeting additional resource demands without needing to purchase or manage in-house infrastructure. With on-demand access to elastic storage resources, organizations working on high performance computing and data analytics such as customer data mining to determine across massive data sets, seismic data processing, risk management and financial analysis, weather modeling and scientific research are able to quickly adapt to changing business needs and get their products or research out of the door faster.
Elastic Storage on Cloud, born in IBM Research Labs, is part of IBM’s Software Defined Environment and Storage solution , which enables clients not just manage but exploit the increasing growth of data in a variety of forms generated by countless devices, sensors, business processes, and social networks. The software includes a set of capabilities that automatically manages data locally and globally, providing breakthrough speed in data access, easy administration and the ability to scale... [Continue Reading]
It’s been just a year after its acquisition; SoftLayer has become the galvanizing force behind IBM's rapid acceleration to cloud leadership. In July 2013, IBM bought SoftLayer for $2 billion and has continued to invest considerably in its cloud portfolio. Clients from all over the world are moving to the IBM Cloud, with thousands of new clients migrating to SoftLayer in the past year alone. Over the last 12 months, SoftLayer has gained 6,000 new customers.
In addition to new clients, more than 1,000 business partners have signed on to offer their services on SoftLayer. Organizations embracing SoftLayer range from leading global players such as Avnet, Arrow Electronics and Ingram Micro, to cloud-based services and solution providers like Mirantis, Assimil8, Silverstring, Clipcard, SilverSky, and Cnetric Enterprise Solutions. Large U.S. enterprise buyers (with more than 1,000 employees), ranked IBM as their top choice of service providers that they believe would be most effective in delivering IaaS for private and/or public clouds.
Also in IBM’s new cloud offerings designed to tackle big data, SoftLayer will play a key role in delivering IBM's rich data and analytics portfolio to clients faster, more effectively and efficiently. One of the most recent innovations include - Codename Elastic Storage is a new software-defined storage-as-a-service offering built on SoftLayer. It provides organizations... [Continue Reading]
I am writing this blog post are part of a series where I am exploring open cloud-inspired approaches, such as OpenStack , DevOps and open standards. The idea is look at how these approaches can enable IT adapt to the shift to user and customer engagement through social and mobile applications.
Users are demanding new applications and services to engage with the consumer-centric world of mobile devices and social networks. In the clients I work with, I have seen a pattern emerge of an integrated approach to cloud-enabled application delivery across development and operations teams. This builds on accepted DevOps practices and couples them with public or private cloud infrastructures to greatly reduce the time taken to deliver new applications into production.
In this post I take a closer look at how this is made possible by combining Software Defined Environments (SDEs) and deployment automation .
Accelerating delivery and reducing costs
Agile delivery demands a new perspective to challenge existing processes and practices. My observation is that IT organizations have optimized themselves to manage complex technologies by evolving into discrete specialism’s, which are good for reducing departmental costs but limiting in terms of IT flexibility and agility. Integration is required across these IT domains to address the need for agility and overall IT cost reduction, including lifetime application maintenance costs. Similar to... [Continue Reading]
Yes, good days in Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) have arrived! IBM recently announced that the Bluemix platform will now be officially available as a commercial offering. PaaS is a service model where providers deliver infrastructure as well as middleware (databases, messaging engines, etc.) and solution stacks for application build, development and deploy. Bluemix is a PaaS offering from IBM based on Cloud Foundry and IBM’s Open Cloud Architecture to build, deploy, manage and run multi-channel applications like web, mobile, big data and other smart services. Bluemix offers DevOps in the cloud. After selecting a range of open source technologies and back-ends, Bluemix provisions the entire environment in the cloud.
See the related post: Introducing a New Composable Environment for the Cloud – Codename: Bluemix
As part of Bluemix General Availability announcement, we’ve introduced new services from IBM and third party, updated our UI and docs and off course, introduced pricing. You can read the complete details about the announcement here .
To get regular and latest updates about IBM Bluemix and Cloud offerings, follow @IBMcloud or @IBMSDE on Twitter.
IBM Systems & Technology Group
Red Hat Inc. , a leading provider of open source solutions, recently announced the latest version of their flagship Enterprise Linux product - Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7. Positioned as the foundation for open hybrid clouds, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 enables Red Hat partners to more easily extend their technologies across physical, virtual and cloud environments without requiring any fundamental changes.
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 is significant for both Red Hat and IBM, and most importantly, for our joint clients. IBM and Red Hat have been partners for 15 years, building on a shared commitment to open computing, a common focus on enterprise quality computing, and active participation in joint open source community projects such as Linux , KVM and OpenStack . We are now going through an age of massive innovation, with new workloads like big data , mobile and social driving radical change in applications, and the new delivery models of private, public and hybrid clouds driving similar change in how those applications are delivered.
Linux sits at the center of all of these new workloads, enabler for cloud computing and providing the link between traditional systems of record and the new systems of engagement. The combination of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 and IBM systems and software delivers the flexibility, stability and new technologies needed to make this a reality. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 offers the flexibility of physical,... [Continue Reading]
The latest global analysis from Synergy Research Group positions IBM among the top three providers in the cloud market for the first quarter of 2014. The leading research group, Synergy Research also acknowledged IBM as the leader in private and hybrid cloud engagements with nearly 14 percent of worldwide revenue market shares from the third quarter of 2013 through the first quarter of 2014. In addition, Synergy Research also stated that IBM ranks second behind Microsoft in terms of year-to-year growth at 80 percent, compared to the same time last year. With findings from Synergy Research’s around growth specific to Infrastructure-as-a-Service, Platform-as-a-Service, hybrid and private cloud, IBM Cloud growth is driven by extensive gains with major enterprise recent client engagements in a variety of industries. Read the complete press release here .
IBM is a global provider and innovator in end-to-end cloud computing solutions. IBM Cloud Computing has helped more than 30,000 clients around the world with 40,000 industry experts. IBM SoftLayer has served 6,000 new cloud clients since its acquisition in 2013. Today, IBM has more than 100 cloud SaaS solutions, network of 40 data centers worldwide and thousands of experts with deep industry knowledge helping clients transform. Since 2007, IBM has invested more than $7 billion in 17 acquisitions to accelerate its cloud initiatives and build a high value cloud portfolio. Visit ibm.com/cloud for... [Continue Reading]
IBM is a strong believer in the open standards approach of OpenStack for Cloud middleware, and IBM is now delivering a great new product, Cloud Manager with OpenStack 4.1 (CMO) , based on the latest OpenStack Icehouse release. CMO 4.1 enables many standards-based Icehouse capabilities, including orchestration and metering. An easy-to-deploy, simple-to-use cloud management solution, CMO 4.1 also features a self-service portal for workload provisioning in a virtualized environment:
It supports all IBM server architectures and major hypervisors.
It allows you to expand from a private cloud solution to remote capacity as needed
Without significant re-investment, you can easily move to advanced IBM cloud capabilities
With IBM Cloud Manager with OpenStack V4.1 (based upon the OpenStack project), you can take advantage of:
Simplified implementation and advanced resource management that is backed by IBM enterprise-grade lab services and support
Complete access to OpenStack APIs (Application Programming Interfaces)
Easy customization via a REST API to help you tailor the product to unique business environments
A modular, flexible design that offers rapid innovation, interoperability, and freedom from being vendor locked-in
The recent talk by Tammy Van Hove, Distinguished Engineer from IBM at the OpenStack Summit in mid-May, 2014... [Continue Reading]
Today businesses are increasingly turning to private and hybrid cloud solutions to reduce costs and enable more flexible and scalable business processes. These cloud enabled infrastructures involve complex management and operational challenges. Still, there is a better way. A new generation of Software Defined Environment (SDE) makes it possible to deliver common cloud services for compute, storage and network while supporting multiple hypervisors and multi-vendor platforms. This approach is one of the most dynamic innovations in private and hybrid clouds, which brings advanced automation and orchestration for both system management and software distribution. Moreover, it provides self-service provisioning and an accountability mechanism to allow IT to keep track of who is doing what with company resources. Many federal agencies are building this strategy that can handle the need to both optimize and innovate.
Looking at the growing demand for this technology among our federal stakeholders, IBM along with the Business of Federal Technology (FCW) is presenting a live webcast today, June 24th 2014 at 2 PM ET . I invite you to join us and see how innovations like SDE, open and other technologies in private and hybrid cloud can bring superior business value while reducing costs.
Also, I will be demonstrating real-life solutions and use cases that will help you make the most of this event as we... [Continue Reading]
I am writing this blog as one of the parts of a series where I am exploring open cloud-inspired approaches such as OpenStack , DevOps and open standards. The idea is to look at how these approaches can enable IT to adapt to the shift to user and customer engagement via social and mobile applications. In my earlier post, I looked at the tectonic impact that social and mobile applications, (explained by Geoffrey Moore and others as systems of engagement ) are having on the IT infrastructures and organizations. Moreover, I looked at how the requirement for agility in delivering these applications is putting pressure on IT operations and developers in many of the organizations I work with.
In this post, I will talk about the top four innovations that I believe are key to IT organizations to successfully utilize IaaS to deliver application services in this new landscape and to address the opposing objectives of operations and developers. Let’s take a look:
1. Management of pets and cattle. Today, the approach that many IT departments use to run applications and systems is financially unsustainable. An analogy I like, is thinking of IT systems as pets rather than cattle . Pets are treated with care and nursed back to health if ill—an approach that is applicable for customer resource management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP), database systems of record and applications where data protection,... [Continue Reading]
According to Gartner’s new research report, IBM is the worldwide market leader in flash storage solid state arrays (SSA’s) based on revenue for 2013.
Customers across the world are turning to IBM flash storage systems than any other company for faster access to insights from Big Data . IBM FlashSystem , the memory technology used in everything from mobile phones and tablet PCs to thumb drives, is taking the enterprise by storm; helping large and small businesses improve the performance of their applications as well as analytics in the era of Big Data.
The largest non-profit healthcare system in Southeast Texas, Memorial Hermann Health System , which includes 12 acute care hospitals, migrated from physical to Electronic Medical Records (EMR) from Cerner Corp. last year, to accelerate the sharing of patient information among medical staffs. This move radically improved efficiencies and created a swell of digital information that needed to be quickly accessed for analysis. And to do that, the company turned to the IBM FlashSystem 840 and SAN Volume Controller storage virtualization software, and the IBM Flex System x240 and saw a dramatic improvement in performance.
“By quickly processing the medical records of all patients across our hospitals in real-time, it enables us to detect patterns that indicate the onslaught of a bacterial infection that may lead to sepsis... [Continue Reading]
This is the fourth blog post in a series of articles on Re-envisioning enterprise IT in the era of mobile, social with open cloud . My objective is to explore the open cloud inspired approaches such as OpenStack and deployment automation that can enable the IT department to remain relevant to business developers and to the users of the IT services that it delivers.In my previous blog post , I looked at some of the historical practices that are holding IT departments back from delivering on developer and user expectations. In this post, I look at what has altered in the application landscape that has caused this fault line to appear.
One of the changes that I find fascinating is how the explosive growth of the Internet and social media over the last 10 years has altered the IT landscape forever. Ten years ago, Facebook barely existed, but the IT and application development approaches that it and others, like Netflix, have introduced—of fast-changing, scalable applications running on a low-cost, commodity infrastructure—are now the predominant model for social and mobile applications.
But how do these applications differ from the enterprise IT that we, who might have been in the industry longer than we like to mention, are more acquainted with? I find the following distinction helpful in this regard:
Systems of record are the types of enterprise resource planning... [Continue Reading]
The IBM Software Defined Environments (SDE) team is working hard at an end-to-end infrastructure solution, and we were able to demo some great results at the Edge2014 conference held from May 19-23 in Las Vegas. During the conference, we were able to demonstrate some of the real-life SDE use cases that led the audiences to ask many insightful software-defined questions and brought huge excitement around this evolving technology. Fortunately, for those who were not able to attend the conference in person, I would like to highlight one of the very interesting demos that we showcased at Edge2014. This demo has four parts showing both current products and future direction for IBM SDE:
Extremely simple creation, monitoring and management of OpenStack-based clouds
Very productive deployment of application infrastructure patterns in OpenStack-based clouds, with a newly announced IBM UrbanCode Deploy with Patterns V6.1, where the same product allows easy deployment of the application into the infrastructure, and management of the life cycle of the application
Smart policy-based cloud operations with IBM Platform Resource Scheduler V2.2 , where cloud providers can set and achieve performance, efficiency, and other objectives easily
High integration and advanced management of IBM's new Elastic Storage in OpenStack-based clouds
The... [Continue Reading]
Leading technology innovation happens in multiple environments from university research labs to Silicon Valley startup’s to, customers who push the limits of technology to adapt to their business models, and even the government. We need to congratulate National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) for taking an early leadership position in standardizing the definitions around cloud computing as the technology was making inroads into US Federal Government , working in collaboration with the industry. IBM is an active participant in defining and driving private and hybrid cloud standards adoption and evolving the NIST definition into an implementable reference architecture that not only considers - what and why of cloud, but also “how” operational integration with existing enterprise systems aligned to Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) and IT Service Management (ITSM) process.
IBM constantly evolves and refines the Cloud Computing Reference Architecture (CCRA) based on the changing regulatory and compliance needs (based on the solid security and privacy frameworks). IBM Cloud Computing Reference Architecture is intended to be used as a blueprint / guide for architecting cloud implementations, driven by functional and non-functional requirements of the respective cloud implementation. The CCRA defines the... [Continue Reading]
Historically, dedicated silicon, such as an ASIC , or proprietary hardware and “firmware” designs have been the preferred delivery mechanism for purpose-built technology devices such as storage controllers, network switches, layer 4-7 devices, and other datacenter hardware. Control, performance and reliability can be very high, but this often comes at the expense of flexibility, with infrequent updates and rigid interfaces.
A desire to more rapidly deploy (or re-deploy) resources has been one of the major driving factors for the “ software defined ” movement, with the emphasis in this case placed on orchestration and coordination of resources to aid accelerated (re)deployment and configuration. However the proliferation of cheap, high performance CPU cycles is driving a parallel “sister” software defined movement, which is the migration of basic “hardware” capabilities previously delivered via ASCIs/Hardware/Firmware as “software” running atop a Linux kernel on a standard server.
As technology previously firmly separated in dedicated physical hardware components instead becomes merely modules of code running on the same server, a final new trend is emerging, which is the convergence of these (now) software components into a monolithic stack. The convergence of system software promises both lowered labor costs, increased feature/function and higher performance, but risks vendor... [Continue Reading]
Today, organizations likely face the same challenges as many of our large complex accounts. Specifically, they would like to be in a position to anticipate market changes and shifts in customer sentiments or preferences while continuing to not only outpace the competition, but also disruptions in their space.
Companies employ strategies to deliver business value by leveraging the following technologies to engage customers:
Mobile – MDM and MADP (Mobile Device Management and Mobile Application Development Platform)
Big data – including NoSQL, which is sometimes referred to as not just SQL
The goal is to access applications and data from anywhere, globally. No matter the size of the enterprise, companies want to be nimble (if not the most nimble, at least nimble enough to be able to quickly respond to global business trends as they develop).
To do this, organizations need to tap into vast amounts of both structured and unstructured data to provide a competitive edge. The ability to instantly access information at the right time to make effective decisions means that organizations need to be able to manage larger volumes and greater variety of data at a velocity that allows them to stay ahead of trends. The goal is to move beyond intuition and instinct to gather and act upon information of all types (volume and variety), as... [Continue Reading]
IBM Edge2014 – The premier event for infrastructure innovation was a success!
More than 4,200 business and IT professionals from around the world gathered in, Las Vegas for this important IBM event. From the packed General Sessions to EdgeTalks...from WinningEdge and the Managed Service Providers (MSP) Forum...to more than 550 Technical Edge sessions… the conference served as an outstanding showcase for exciting new IT infrastructure breakthroughs and technology announcements related to Storage, x86 Systems and PureSystems.
Here’s a recap and some of the noteworthy content memorable moments and takeaways from Edge2014:
The conference kicked-off with an exclusive 2-day ExecutiveEdge event featuring a number of exciting sessions including 2 General Sessions and Edge Talks.
In EdgeTalks , the speakers focused on how innovative thinking in areas like healthcare, urban renewal and cybersecurity can result in unexpected extraordinary outcomes, while IBM Executive Host, Surjit Chana, CMO and Vice President Systems & Technology Group (STG), connected the dots and brought all the innovative ideas shared back to what it meant to the audience in terms of being creative about how they leverage IBM Infrastructure to help exploit the capabilities of evolving Cloud, Analytics, Mobile, Social and Security (CAMSS) technologies. This new Edge Talks format was a big hit... [Continue Reading]
There is a lot of hoopla out there about the cloud, especially since dozens of startups have gone public over the last year or two, and many more are in the queue. Here are what I believe to be the top five cloud predictions for the coming years:
1. More application availability on the cloud
With most new software being built for cloud from the outset, it is predicted that by 2016 over a quarter of all applications (around 48 million) will be available on the cloud (Global Technology Outlook: Cloud 2014: A More Disruptive Phase).
This makes sense when you consider that about 56 percent of enterprises consider cloud to be a strategic differentiator, and approximately 58 percent of enterprises spend more than 10 percent of their annual budgets on cloud services. The Everest Group, in their recent Enterprise Cloud Adoption Survey, further argues that cloud adoption enables operational excellence and accelerated innovation.
2. Increased growth in the market for cloud
According to Gartner, the cloud is here, and it is accelerating globally. Based on their forecast for 2011-2017 , Gartner expects adoption to hit $250 billion by 2017. In the fourth quarter of 2013, we saw this prediction supported by enterprises worldwide—enterprises that were increasingly relying on cloud to develop, market and sell products, manage supply chains and more.
In the same forecast, Gartner also suggested that the worldwide... [Continue Reading]
Innovation, one idea at a time: A fascinating notion that resonated well at IBM Edge2014 this week.
With IBM EdgeTalks , a session on innovation which I was honored and delighted to host, we set out to inspire our audience. Inspire them to think big. Inspire them to make bold moves. Inspire them to think about how they can transform their organizations by using technology—and IT infrastructure—differently.
We decided to shake things up a bit with EdgeTalks by inviting several amazing speakers who are influencing thinking about food and communities, health and wellness and cybersecurity. These thought leaders and innovators are changing the world around them—one bold idea at a time. You may recognize their names from TED Talks ®.
First we heard from renegade gardener Ron Finley ( @RonFinleyHQ ). Ron got cited by the police for planting carrots, and in his outrage gave voice to a movement, transforming, nourishing, educating communities and keeping kids off the street, one urban garden at a time. Ron is now traveling around the globe, meeting with world leaders like President Clinton. Ron urged us all to do “Epic Stuff.” Ron’s passion, leadership and good humor has inspired me, and many in the audience.
“Compost changed my life… It is my disco song.”
Turning cheap data into wisdom
Next,... [Continue Reading]
IBM Edge2014 – The premier event for infrastructure innovation (May 19-23) is in full swing in Las Vegas. As we have already seen the excitement on day 1 and day 2 at Edge, yesterday (the third day of the event) was no exception. More than 4200 attendees from 1009 companies across 22 industries and 55 countries made it to the event to discover latest technologies and share best practices in infrastructure innovation. Let’s take a quick look at what all happened yesterday at Edge2014:
More than 150 expert technical sessions and hands-on labs were held spanning 14 technical tracks including Software Defined Environments (SDE) and Storage . Attendees were able to get unparalleled technical education plus numerous opportunities to expand their professional network. With IBM’s latest announcements around SDE and storage, we got to see lot of excitements among our participants. Additionally, the Edge2014 Solution Center featured exhibits from more than 50 sponsors plus the IBM Infrastructure Matters Zone. Attendees got real-life experience to explore the products and personally interact with experts. No doubt, the solution center fetched huge traffic and excitement to learn more about IBM latest innovations.
At the Winning Edge, IBM Systems & Technology Group (STG) Specialty Business Partners and IBM Sellers were invited and offered an exclusive... [Continue Reading]
IBM Edge2014 – The premier event for infrastructure innovation is making waves in Las Vegas. On Tuesday (the second day of the event), more than 4200 technology leaders and practitioners from all industries participated to sharpen their expertise, discover the latest technologies, and share best practices in infrastructure innovation. Here are the key highlights:
General Session Day 2: Creating an Agile Infrastructure
The second day of Edge2014 started off with the General Session: Creating an Agile Infrastructure . While General Session Day 1: “ Infrastructure Innovation that Matters ” discussed the what and why aspects of it, the General Session Day 2 focused on how IBM solutions can deliver on the promise of infrastructure’s value through the lens of cloud, analytics, mobile and social. The session was moderated by Stephen Leonard – General Manager, Sales IBM Systems & Technology Group (STG), and brought together top IBM client and executives like Chris O’Connor - Vice President, IBM Cloud & Smarter Infrastructure, Arvind Krishna – General Manager, Development and Manufacturing, IBM STG, Maria Winans, Vice President, IBM Social Business who delivered insights on infrastructure innovations.
The session explained how to simplify, accelerate and deliver IT in the era of cloud, big data, mobile and social. For instance, during the session Maria Winans -Vice President, IBM... [Continue Reading]
IBM Edge 2014 event kicked off yesterday May 19th 2014 in Las Vegas, bringing together more than 4200 technology leaders and practitioners from across the world to learn and discover the latest in infrastructure innovation. Let’s take a look at some of the exciting events that took place yesterday:
The Executive General Session Day 1 talked about the what and why aspects of Infrastructure Innovations. Hosted by Stephen Leonard - General Manager Sales, IBM Systems & Technology Group (STG), the session not only highlighted some of the top concerns being faced by businesses today in the era of cloud, big data, mobile and social but also explored why IT infrastructure is critical to business success. Leading IBM experts like Tom Rosamilia – Senior Vice President, IBM STG, Jamie Thomas – General Manager, IBM Storage & Software Defined Systems, Adalio Sanchez – General Manager, IBM System x and top IBM Clients & Business Partners joined the session and delivered insights. You can watch the full coverage here .
Today it’s going to be even interesting as in the General Session Day 2 (8.45 AM PT), we will explore how organizations can realize competitive advantage building their cloud, analytics, mobile and social initiatives on IBM infrastructure solutions. Don’t miss this unique opportunity!
Main Tent Sessions: EdgeTalks - Innovation That Impacts Our World
A special session hosted... [Continue Reading]
Today at IBM Edge 2014 - The premier event for infrastructure innovation, IBM Systems & Technology Group’s Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer, Surjit Chana, will host a special session called Edge Talks: Innovation that Impacts our World . The session will talk about innovations and how great ideas can help organizations move ahead. During EdgeTalks (the opening session of the Executive Edge at Edge2014), our Vice President along with several eminent speakers from TED Talks ® will discuss innovation that impacts our world and explore major global issues like food supply, health & wellness, and security. The session will also highlight thought provoking, bold solutions that resulted from daring to think differently and act differently.
The eminent speakers from TED Talks will be:
Ron Finley, the renegade gardener who transformed a Los Angeles food desert one urban garden at a time. (Twitter: @RonFinleyHQ )
John Wilbanks who will address the convergence of technologies that capture personal data and their uneasy connection with privacy laws and ethics. (Twitter: @Wilbanks )
Peter S. Singer, the author of “Cybersecurity and Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know.” (Twitter: @PeterWSinger )
I am sure you don’t want to miss this session! Join us today May 19th 2014 at 3 PM PT in the Venetian Ballroom (Level 2) and see how thinking big and daring to be bold with... [Continue Reading]
In the course of my field travels for IBM, I have heard Software Defined Storage referred to as “just marketing talk,” “a re-spin of old technology,” and “adding another layer of complexity to the cloud.”
In this short tech note, I will illustrate the key reasons why Software Defined Storage (SDS) is not only important for enterprise cloud infrastructures, but necessary for enabling:
Software Defined Storage – What is it?
To begin with a simple definition, Software Defined Storage is comprised of two distinct layers: the control plane and the data plane .
The first layer is control plane that provides a central point of intergration as well as common northbound APIs like REST. This layer also provides orchestration and automation tasks to the underlying data storage as requested by the cloud infrastructure. This can be tasks such as automated provisioning, policy management, tiering and monitoring.
The second layer is the data plane. This is a very large bucket which provides different types of storage such as NAS, object, and block storage. Along with the different storage devices, features and functions such as data protection, replication, snapshots and storage networking are key components of this plane.
Software Defined... [Continue Reading]
IBM is one of the key members participating at the Cloud Computing East 2014 conference which is opening today at Hilton in Downtown Washington, DC. The 2-day event (May 15-16) will focus on the unique issues, opportunities and special considerations that apply to the two industry verticals of Healthcare and Government in the adoption of cloud computing solutions.
Healthcare remains one of the fastest growing verticals of the global economy. Deliver wide-ranging functionality, drive innovative processes, and do more with less are some of the prominent challenges being faced by this vertical. In order to accomplish these and compete globally, Healthcare is combining cloud technology and creativity in its business models. IBM is well positioned to help Healthcare build a connected, agile and transparent ecosystem.
At the Cloud Computing East 2014 conference, I along with few other IBM members will address some of the major concerns underpinning Healthcare and discuss how IBM’s proven capabilities like Cloud, Software Defined Environments and Watson can enable achieve greater efficiency and improved outcomes for this vertical. Join me in the session: Redefining Value and Success in Healthcare Cloud Enabled Transformation, tomorrow Friday May 16 from 8.50-9.30 AM Eastern Time in Track B of the Cloud Computing HEALTHCARE (hCloud). I enthusiastically invite you and look forward to hearing your thoughts during the session. If you have... [Continue Reading]
Cloud , analytics , mobile and social are transforming the world and bringing opportunities to business. This is an incredible moment. But many organizations have not been able to harness the value of their investments in this space. We need a new IT model, designed for the new era.
It comes down to the fact that infrastructure matters . The right infrastructure helps deliver real-time insights so you can make better business decisions, faster. It delivers performance efficiently, optimizes IT resources and is easy to consume. It’s also scalable and secure, providing safe, shared access to all relevant information no matter where that information resides.
All of that sounds great. But, as I often hear clients ask, how do you make sure you’re choosing the right infrastructure for your business?
It doesn’t have to be hard. Coming up on May 19-23 at Edge2014 in Las Vegas, you can tap into IBM’s point of view on the right choices for your business – formed by what we’ve learned in over 20,000 client engagements globally, in every country, every market. Edge2014 is the premier event for infrastructure innovation, where leading worldwide industry experts will discuss why IT infrastructure matters and how organizations can realize competitive advantage building their cloud, analytics, mobile and social initiatives optimized by IBM infrastructure innovations. Over the course of the event, you... [Continue Reading]
When IT professionals talk about software defined data centers, the emphasis is typically on virtual servers — how they're created, provisioned, and maintained. But a truly smart software defined data center should be optimized as comprehensively as possible, across all resources. And among those, one of the most critical is storage.
How does the software defined data center pitch usually go? "Fluid allocation of resources in real time, to fulfill changing business workloads."
In the case of storage, making that fluid allocation happen means taking into account many factors. A short list would include virtualizing all storage, tracking the costs of storage utilization over time, determining the speed of reading/writing data to/from different storage tiers, reducing wasted storage as completely as possible, continually assessing how storage is used by different services and adapting in parallel, performing capacity management and planning tasks... and of course, reducing as much as possible total operational costs and management complexity.
That's quite a set of goals. And in a software defined storage (SDS) , those goals must mostly be accomplished automatically, for the data center to be as agile as possible in scaling to unexpected requirements. For any cloud model — public, private, or hybrid — these are major factors already, and they're becoming more important by the day. As data... [Continue Reading]
IBM's Strategy for Software Defined Network (SDN) is going to be one of the key areas to be covered at Edge 2014 – The premier event for infrastructure innovation. I invite you to join me to explore how we plan ahead with Software Defined Network and our key initiatives around SDN. At Edge 2014, from May 19-23 at the Venetian in Las Vegas, I am going to detail step-wise rollout plan that will fully capture the transformation in your network architecture without vendor lock-in. This unique opportunity will also help you realize the potential of OpenDaylight , an open-source based Network Virtualization framework that integrates with OpenStack , supporting hypervisors such as VMware, KVM, and others. This lecture will describe IBM's data center strategy to finally complete the virtualization framework and leverage the power of cloud using industry best practices designs and open software tools. Come join me to learn about the vital differentiation of our SDN solutions in this rapidly evolving space. Here are the complete session details:
Date & Time
IBM's Strategy for Software Defined Network
Thursday, May 22th, 2014 - 1.45 pm–2.45 pm PT
Friday May 23rd, 2014 - 10.30 am-11.30 am PT
Lido 3104... [Continue Reading]
Recently, OpenDaylight become the first ever open source project to earn best of Interop 2014 award for its significant contributions to advancing IT. Interop , the most respected networking industry trade show, awarded OpenDaylight with the Best of Interop Grand Prize selected from nine category winners across key facets of IT. This caps off a year of accomplishments that have taken OpenDaylight from nascent underdog to one of the most important open source projects in the world.
One year ago at the Open Networking Summit , we announced OpenDaylight—a cross-industry consortium tasked with building an open source community and platform for Software-Defined Networking (SDN) solutions. OpenDaylight is the culmination of IBM's efforts to build an open platform that can provide the base for one of the three pillars of Software Defined Environments (SDE) alongside Software-Defined Storage (SDS) and Software-Defined Compute (SDC). The consortium launched with other major industry players including Brocade, Cisco, Citrix, Ericsson, Juniper, Microsoft and Red Hat.
While some people were enthusiastic from the beginning, others were understandably skeptical. Many of the companies involved were networking equipment vendors who might oppose a truly open platform that could rapidly bring sweeping changes to how we build networking infrastructure. During the announcement, Inder Gopal, IBM's Vice President of Network Development... [Continue Reading]
In my previous blog , I said that the contract between IT and users’ need resetting, as historical expectations are now restricting IT from delivering on user expectations for increasingly agile delivery of social and mobile applications.
The two reasons I presented that are holding back IT in my previous post were:
Standard builds for servers and applications or lack thereof
In this post, the third in a series of articles on Re envisioning enterprise IT in the era of mobile, social with open cloud , I look at two more reasons.
Objectives and incentives direct human behavior.
I hear sales people frequently described as being coin operated, as it is clear to see how they are motivated. However, it does not take a financial incentive to pit two halves of an organization at each other.
The two halves of IT have competing objectives:
- Operations is rewarded for uptime and stability
- Development is rewarded on the delivery of function
In this context, operations knows that the best way to provide stability is to accept no changes and development has little incentive to focus on code quality.
The question is how can development ensure greater stability and quality of the applications it develops and operations accept a high rate of change?
If... [Continue Reading]
Software Defined Networking (SDN) is an evolving architecture that is dynamic, manageable, cost-effective and adaptable, making it ideal for the high-bandwidth, dynamic nature of today's applications. Now that SDN has become an everyday speak for many IT professionals in a Software Defined Environment , what do we really mean when we talk about SDN? What are its implications and business opportunities?
IBM Edge 2014 – The premier event for infrastructure innovation, from May 19-23 at Venetian in Las Vegas, will address many concerns about SDN and discuss end-to-end SDN architecture through exclusive expert sessions, clients’ success stories, etc. I would like to highlight some of the sessions at Edge that will outline many aspects of SDN and how IBM SDN capabilities help customers in developing, deploying, managing and maintaining a simplified, responsive and highly adaptive infrastructure :
Building Scalable, Programmable Network Fabric with SDN
Software Defined Networking (SDN) promise administrators to dynamically program networking devices using APIs. IBM Software Defined Network for Virtual Environment (SDN VE) controller with related applications allows administrators to build large scale network fabric from a central controller while using open standards such as OpenFlow, OpenStack, and OpenDaylight. This session will explain the technology behind SDN VE, unravel the... [Continue Reading]
I am writing this blog post as one of the series of articles on my previous post: Re-envisioning enterprise IT in the era of mobile, social with open cloud . My first blog introduced the scope of these posts looking at some of the challenges faced and the potential solutions discussed in this series of blogs.
In that first post I observed it is estimated that 40 percent of all IT spending is now outside the IT department. If IT does not change, then there is a real potential they will go the way of the Dodo and become extinct.
So what is holding IT back from changing and delivering the agility, flexibility and lower costs that users are looking for?
My assertion is that one of the handicaps facing IT today is the “contract” of behaviors and expectations that have built up between IT and the business. It needs resetting, but what is this contract of expectations? Here are a few of my views.
The near universal use of project-based funding for application delivery has a perverse effect on how IT invests and handles the whole life management of applications and business services.
As IT’s first focus is typically on delivery and operation, my observation is that the tools, procedures and culture are not in place to allow for change over the course of the life of an application and its supporting... [Continue Reading]
IBM Power Systems deliver advantages that are unique in the industry and provide accelerated innovation for cloud. Whether it’s private cloud, public cloud or a hybrid cloud solution, Power Systems offer a flexible, open, and powerful platform for cloud workloads. Here are five effective Power Systems’ advantages for the cloud:
1) Exceptional Reliability, Availability and Serviceability (RAS) – and performance
Reliability and availability are critical for workloads delivered through the cloud. In Power Systems mid-range and high-end systems, we see mean time between failures in the range of 70 to 100 years. This equates to 99.997 percent availability. Power Systems also have features to help manage virtual machine availability and elasticity such as Live Partition Mobility and dynamic resource allocation. Moreover, with the latest announcement of POWER8 systems, Power Systems have upped the performance customers can get from scale-out servers built on POWER8 technology.
2) Leadership virtualization
Power Systems with PowerVM have one of the industry’s most resilient and flexible hypervisors, supporting virtual machines (VMs) running in as small as one-twentieth of a core or up to 256 cores. PowerVM provides extraordinary VM isolation. High density and high virtualization help lower total cost of ownership and simplify management with... [Continue Reading]
In my previous blog , I talked about the significance of multitenancy and how YARN (yet another resource negotiator) is an important development for organizations deploying Hadoop environments. Here I will discuss about some of the advance and most effective multitenant distributed computing solutions offered by IBM that help our customers build a true multitenant infrastructures. In addition to standard capabilities in Hadoop, IBM offers a solution called IBM Platform Symphony profiled by Gartner Research here . IBM Platform Symphony was designed from day one to support multitenancy with all the capabilities that this entails including security isolation, service level guarantees, chargeback accounting and dynamic resource sharing subject to policy. While IBM Platform Symphony supports your chosen Hadoop distribution along IBM’s own Hadoop offerings, we take a broader view. IBM Platform Computing supports not only Hadoop workloads, but a huge catalog of additional applications as well – service-oriented applications, batch workloads, process-oriented workloads, MPI applications as well as various long-running service frameworks.
IBM has been delivering multitenant distributed computing solutions for over ten years. We are proud that 12 of the top 20 global investment banks have deployed IBM Platform Symphony to manage their multitenant infrastructure. If you are struggling with... [Continue Reading]
All in the Hadoop world are excited about YARN . For those who don’t follow such topics, YARN is an acronym for “yet another resource negotiator” . YARN is an important development for organizations deploying Hadoop environments.
What YARN does is essentially de-couple Hadoop workload management from resource management. This means that multiple applications can share a common infrastructure pool. While this idea is not new to many of us, it is new to Hadoop. Earlier versions of Hadoop consolidated both workload and resource management functions into a single JobTracker. This approach resulted in limitations for customers hoping to run multiple applications on the same cluster infrastructure.
Open source Hadoop 2.2.0 and later incorporate generally available versions of YARN. The community delivered the GA release in Hadoop 2.2.0 in October 2013, and major providers of Hadoop including IBM are at various stages of incorporating YARN into commercial Hadoop offerings.
Yet another resource negotiator
YARN is well named. While an important technology, the world is not suffering from a shortage of resource managers. Some Hadoop providers (including IBM) are supporting YARN while others are supporting Apache Mesos . In addition, there is a plethora of general purpose batch workload managers supporting Hadoop as “yet another workload pattern” (YAWP – you... [Continue Reading]
Among tech topics that generated most buzz at the recently concluded Red Hat Summit in San Francisco - cloud , software defined infrastructures and open source stood out. Leading experts in the industry shared valuable insights on the vast opportunity, business value, and competitive advantages of these technologies.
In one of the discussions, Scott Firth , Director - IBM Software Defined Environments (SDE), delivered insights on the many facets of cloud, software defined and open source including their respective value propositions, implications on IT infrastructure as well as IBM’s next move around these technologies. The discussion was led by SiliconANGLE’s John Furrier and Wikibon’s Stu Miniman inside theCUBE from the floor of Red Hat Summit 2014. Here are some of the key excerpts of the conversation:
♦ The discussion started with Scott’s comments on the IBM’s strategic decision to invest in Linux back in 1999 when it was still in its infancy stage and IBM’s outlook on open source technologies today
♦ Scott (with IBM for more than 30 years) emphasized some highlights of the long-standing IBM-Red Hat alliance, starting with solutions for Linux applications running on thousands of Linux Virtual Machines on the mainframe, to performing data analytics on Power Systems and Intel-based systems.
♦ On the cloud and open source front, Scott... [Continue Reading]
Time is running out to register for IBM’s Edge2014 – the premier event for infrastructure innovation, taking place May 19-23 at the Venetian in Las Vegas. Edge 2014 will deliver unparalleled technical education on the latest technologies and trends that are defining this new era such as cloud , big data , software defined environments , mobility , security and more. The event brings an exclusive opportunity for you to network and participate in forward-thinking discussions with IBM product developers, executives, industry experts and more than 5,500 of your peers.
At Edge2014, we will showcase latest IBM enterprise-level technologies via hands-on labs, demos and workshops. Leading technology experts from across the globe will share knowledge, best practices through more than 550 sessions in 14 exclusive technical tracks.
Download the Technical Edge guide to get the full session descriptions and track information.
As an IT leader, you’re invited to attend Edge 2014 infrastructure innovation event. (The early bird registration ends April 20th) . Register today and be a part of this incredible opportunity. We look forward to your participation. For more updates, visit ibm.com/edge or follow @IBMEdge on Twitter .
IBM Systems & Technology Group... [Continue Reading]
In today’s world, the incessant data growth is challenging traditional storage and data management solutions. These outdated systems lack performance and are expensive to administer and scale. As a result, business outcomes are impacted. In order to quickly and cost effectively respond to the staggering growth of data, there is a need for a scalable, high-performance, reliable and collaborative storage and data management infrastructure.
IBM’s General Parallel File System (GPFS) is a proven, scalable, high-performance data and file management solution that’s being used widely across multiple industries. GPFS provides simplified data management and integrated information lifecycle tools capable of managing petabytes of data and billions of files, in order to arrest the growing cost of managing ever growing amounts of data. GPFS removes data related bottlenecks by providing parallel access to data, eliminating single filer choke points or hot spots.
IBM GPFS ensures end-to-end data availability, reliability & integrity and also simplifies data management at large scale by providing a single namespace that can be scaled easy on demand by simply adding additional compute or storage resources. Conventionally deployed for high performance computing (HPC), today GPFS has gained market share in non-HPC solutions like Healthcare & Finance and supporting high available scale-out relational databases, helping... [Continue Reading]
During Red Hat Summit in June 2013, IBM announced that it will be bringing Linux's built-in Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) to its Linux-only Power servers . You will be glad to know that IBM is all set to turn this promise a reality after being working hard on it since 2011. The Power Systems version of KVM, PowerKVM , will be available on IBM’s next generation Power Systems servers tuned for Linux before the end of this quarter. KVM is a leading open source virtualization technology as well as an important tool in any Linux administrator’s handbook, especially with the increased adoption of cloud technologies such as OpenStack and the need for hypervisors to effectively manage the network, compute and storage resources. According to Jim Wasko, Director of IBM's Linux Technology Center, “IBM has long supported KVM on its x86-based products and with this new capability, users will have greater choice when they adopt Linux-based systems to drive new workloads like cloud, big data, mobile and social computing.
There are two reasons we created a KVM product to exploit the Power Systems’ architecture – beyond its increasing deployment in the open source environment, said Jim in the release featured recently. First, Linux users wanted a "familiar" look-and-feel for virtualization; and second, cloud solutions demand... [Continue Reading]
The vision of the software defined infrastructure (SDI) is to deliver virtualized capabilities to the entire set of resources required by the application so they can be deployed automatically and quickly with little to no human intervention. Storage is one the major building blocks in accomplishing the software defined infrastructure vision. In order to achieve the SDI vision, it’s critical that storage hardware and software architectures must adapt effectively so that storage can be provisioned and responsive to the dynamically changing requirements of the SDI. The flash technology is positioned as a key enabler for these new storage architectures and with the right combination of hardware and software; facilitates efficient, cost-effective and high-performance storage services delivery. Flash-based storage improves I/O performance and efficiency for many applications like database acceleration, server & desktop virtualization and cloud environments. Flash storage has become a way to compress data, reduce power, and increase performance making it a superior enabler of virtualization and a perfect fit for the SDI vision.
Recognizing the growing importance of flash in a software defined infrastructure, IBM is offering end-to-end technical education sessions on flash technologies at Edge 2014 from May 19-23 at Venetian, Las Vegas.
At Edge 2014 – the premier event for infrastructure innovation,... [Continue Reading]
There's a lot of buzz about cluster file systems being the ultimate Software Defined Storage (SDS) . I couldn't agree more. I like to think of cluster file systems as the Swiss army knife of storage -- many styles of storage possible with one cluster file system product -- high IOPS, high streaming bandwidth, or cost effective styles all possible, with high availability, high elasticity at the same time.
Cluster file systems can leverage cost effective, commodity storage rich servers, and the wealth of Hard Disk Drive (HDD) and Solid-state Drive (SSD) storage options they offer, to create enterprise-grade storage. IBM's General Parallel File System (GPFS) is a mature, robust, award winning product, well known for performance and scaling in some of the world's largest supercomputer installations, that makes a great software defined storage subsystem for many, many applications.
IBM recently published an online book titled Software Defined Storage for Dummies , which shows the dramatic capabilities of GPFS-as-SDS and many real world applications. The Software Defined Storage For Dummies, IBM Platform Computing Edition , not only examines data storage & management challenges but also explains how software defined storage delivers an innovative solution for high-performance, cost-effective storage using IBM’s GPFS.
It’s... [Continue Reading]
Constant technology developments in cloud computing are creating exceptional opportunities for enterprises to transform business models, and their communications with customers and partners. Technologies like open standards play a key role in cloud computing strategy. Open standards in the cloud are enabling a new approach to delivering capabilities, workloads, and services while driving new levels of interoperability across cloud deployments. This approach results in dramatic improvements in data center operations, faster application development, and highly scalable solutions deployed in the cloud. Recently, Angel Diaz, IBM Vice President of Open Technology and Cloud Performance, has posted a very interesting article on Wired titled “ Creating the Gold “Standard” for Cloud Computing, ” that highlights the significance of developing standards for cloud computing. The article describes why organizations need to employ open standards as they adopt cloud solutions, underlines the pitfalls of taking a propitiatory approach to cloud and recaps some of the work being performed at the industry level by OpenStack , Cloud Foundry and OpenPOWER foundation to create widespread open standards.
One of the key efforts Angel discussed in his article is OpenStack Havana . This latest and most important release by OpenStack foundation addresses the two main concerns of cloud adopters - safety of their critical... [Continue Reading]
IBM Impact2014 , from April 27-May 1 at Venetian Las Vegas, brings together leading IT & business professionals from around the world to collaborate, innovate, and maximize their business effectiveness. Impact 2014 will deliver four days of best practices, technical education and roadmaps for business transformation and leverage deep insights from topics like mobile, cloud, big data & analytics, smarter process, connectivity, application infrastructure and the internet of things with more than 600 interactive sessions.
The Impact2014 conference is the ideal place to meet with IBM experts, business partners, and clients to gain insights into the latest happenings in IBM. And this year at Impact, IBM’s System z and Power Systems will be among the major attractions. Let’s take a look at some of the key highlights of System z and Power Systems at Impact2014:
System z at Impact2014:
There will be more than 100 System z related unique sessions , including lectures, labs, panels and meet the experts’ sessions across all of the tracks at Impact such as Cloud, Mobile and Application Infrastructure. Likewise, there will be System z Solution Suite that will provide you opportunity to meet 1-on-1 with technical experts for in-depth discussions and demonstrations of the latest z capabilities for mobile and cloud, as well as the latest solutions to modernize and manage your application portfolio on System z. New... [Continue Reading]
IBM received Frost & Sullivan’s 2014 Global Visionary Innovation Leadership Award as Best-in-Class Smart City Integrator . An independent analysis from the Visionary Innovation Research Group at Frost & Sullivan has named IBM the leading Smart City integrator, recognizing IBM’s deep expertise in working with thousands of cities of all sizes globally on Smart City initiatives. The award cites IBM for its ground-breaking solutions aimed to help cities transform their systems and better manage resources through the use of big data & analytics and cloud computing .
IBM provides end-to-end cloud-based solutions to help cities transform all aspects of city operations, manage traffic, improve public safety and improve sustainability.
As per Michael J Dixon, Ph.D., General Manager, IBM Smarter Cities , "This Frost & Sullivan award acknowledges IBM's accomplishments in helping cities around the world become smarter." "IBM's proven experiences in helping cities adopt cloud-based connectivity and industry solutions specific to water, public safety, transportation, sustainability and healthcare is helping cities reinvent themselves and change the way they work."
The Visionary Innovation Leadership Award recognizes the leaders who have... [Continue Reading]
I believe the enterprise IT application delivery model as it exists today in many organizations is broken. With the advent of cloud , social and mobile , it requires new thinking.
Users seem to agree as shadow IT has grown exponentially in recent years. The advisory firm CEB estimates that 40 percent of all IT spending at a company now occurs outside the IT department, a great deal of which is spent on infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and software-as-a-service (SaaS) cloud services.
IT departments challenged to adapt
I spend much of my time assisting IT departments who are being challenged by their business users to deliver mobile, social and cloud based applications to generate new business value.
Users are demanding agility, greater flexibility and expect lower costs.
To adapt, they are looking for guidance across multiple domains (technical, cultural and organizational) as to how to meet changing user expectations of IT service delivery. All too frequently, if IT is not delivering, the users look to external cloud service providers who can offer agile, pay as you go (PAYG) services.
I do not believe public cloud service provision is the only future. Custom infrastructure, private cloud and hybrid combinations offer value propositions that cannot be met with public cloud alone. However it requires major change on the part of IT.
To remain relevant, enterprise IT needs to be reinvented.
... [Continue Reading]
IBM Edge2014 will be held on May 19-23, 2014 at The Venetian in Las Vegas. The premier event for infrastructure innovation will be focused on simplifying IT infrastructure and accelerating performance to deliver business value by using IBM's cloud , big data , mobility and security solutions . Edge2014 will bring together more than 5500 technology leaders and practitioners from all industries to sharpen their expertise, discover the latest technologies, and share best practices in infrastructure innovation.
Let’s take a look how IBM Edge2014 is going to deliver a unique experience for us:
Executive Edge (May 19-20) - An exclusive 2-day event for IT executives and leaders featuring breakthrough innovations and technology announcements, client success stories, provocative presentations from IBM executives and industry thought leaders, top tier executive one-on-one meetings and exclusive networking opportunities.
Technical Edge (May 19-23) - A 4.5-day technical event for IT professionals and practitioners featuring world-class education geared for all levels and covering a comprehensive range of solution areas, client case studies and best practices, hands-on labs and on-site certifications.
Business Partner Forum (May 19) - A half-day event where IBM Systems and Technology Group (STG) and channel leadership will reinforce the increasingly important role of Business Partners in the IBM infrastructure strategy. Topics... [Continue Reading]
Cloud has emerged as the growth engine for business. A recent survey of enterprises showed that those who adopt and leverage cloud computing for competitive advantage on average grow twice as fast and double their profit. Building an effective cloud environment requires a disciplined approach. Standards (both formal and informal) are rapidly evolving to ensure portability, interoperability (ISO/IEC JTC1/SC-38, OASIS TOSCA, IEEE P2302 etc.), and manageability of the cloud environment. IBM is well-positioned to offer end-to-end cloud solutions based on open architectures that deliver both interoperability and value to our customers across the world. Recently, IBM made major developments in the cloud. From acquiring SoftLayer last year to its commitment to invest $1.2 billion , IBM Cloud is creating exceptional opportunities for enterprises to transform business models, supply chains, and their interactions with customers and partners. Innovation around IBM's open cloud architecture is dramatically changing the entire digital fabric inside, and outside of the data center. One of them is Codename: Bluemix (Open Standards based Platform as a Service). Introduced at Pulse2014 , Bluemix is a new IBM PaaS offering based on Cloud Foundry , is an open-standards, cloud-based platform for building, managing and running apps of all types (web, mobile, big data, new smart devices).
We are seeing a lot of innovations by IBM in the... [Continue Reading]
While cloud has been clearly identified as the next step to IT optimization, essential for increased performance and cost reduction, many of us are in a haze when it comes to the fundamental security measures required.
Our fears related to cloud security , for instance, the fear of the unknown ( where is my data stored?) and the fear of the unseen (how does my data flow from one Virtual Machine to another) and the fear of how ‘secure’ the cloud really is lead us to be wary of cloud adoption. Also the new layers of infrastructure create new grey areas, requiring new security solutions that could provide virtual layer specific protection. However this blog post will focus at the fundamental hardware security.
Let’s take a look at the basic components of cloud and ways to optimize their security
Even though the cloud uses a different mechanism to serve IT infrastructure, be it computing power, memory or storage, the elements that create a cloud still include traditional datacenter components – servers, network, nodes and endpoints. The risks that exist in traditional data centers are also relevant in a cloud environment. Hence, traditional protection solutions such as Firewalls, Network Protection, Host security, etc. are... [Continue Reading]
After the successful accomplishment of Pulse2014, we’re ready to host yet another grand event – Edge2014 . Starting from May 19-23 at Venetian Las Vegas, IBM Edge2014 brings together IT professionals and practitioners from all industries to sharpen their expertise, discover the latest technologies, and share best practices in infrastructure innovation. The premier global event for infrastructure innovation will be focused on simplifying IT infrastructure and accelerating performance to deliver business value by using IBM’s cloud , big data , mobility and security solutions.
Let’s take a look at some of the key highlights of Edge2014:
550 expert technical sessions across 14 tracks
Exciting technology innovations and announcements
Latest and greatest business partner education
A comprehensive and expanded showcase Solution Center giving you access to the latest storage, System x and PureSystems solutions from IBM and our sponsors
Top-notch entertainment for over 5500 attendees
Wait, we have more in store for you...
The top 5 reasons to attend Edge2014:
Be the first to learn about the latest IBM technology innovation and their business implications
Be the first to see newest IBM solutions and live demos at the Solution Center
Hear real-life customer case studies and best practices tailored to CxO and Line of Business (LoB) issues and... [Continue Reading]
IBM got to show its great advances in Software Defined Environments (SDE) at its Pulse2014 global conference from February 23rd-26th, but if you missed the Pulse conference or the SDE booth at Pulse, you're still in luck, as we have the story here for you!
The IBM SDE solution brief is really looking sharp! There's a fully integrated solution, showing advanced business process integration and full DevOps style application lifecycle management at the top of the solution, supported by industry standard OpenStack Heat orchestration to give line of business cloud users or consumers superior capabilities. There's also advanced on-premise and off-premise cloud deployment and management, at the bottom of the solution, with superior management of compute , storage , and network for cloud providers . There are even advanced policy capabilities to automatically scale or flex up the cloud size as demands increase, or to pack or stripe VM instances to meet cloud cost or performance objectives.
The elements of the IBM SDE solution in the brief are shown in two major sections, targeting two audiences:
Cloud consumer – those that develop, deploy, and maintain applications and manage line-of business applications in the cloud. This section describes application and infrastructure products, specifically IBM’s UrbanCode Deploy, and the IBM OpenStack Heat orchestration subsystem, and how... [Continue Reading]
Let’s face it - IT infrastructure is expensive. This is especially true of the type of infrastructure used for clustered High Performance Computing (HPC) and analytic applications.
For people not familiar with distributed workload management, claims around cost-savings can sound fanciful, so in short this post I wanted to take the time to clearly explain some of the money savers.
Here are the ten effective ways that IBM Platform Computing software can help you do more with less:
Running applications more efficiently: While we often focus on topics like clock speed and bandwidth as measures of performance, in distributed applications latency is what matters. This is especially true as computers get faster. If I have a series of tasks where each executes for 2 seconds, but I spend a full-second getting each task scheduled to a cluster node, I’ve just lost 33% of my productivity and added 50% to my cost. Platform Computing schedulers avoid this pitfall by providing as low as sub-millisecond scheduling latency removing the “white space” between jobs and keeping infrastructure close to 100% utilized.
Sharing infrastructure more liberally: Everyone appreciates the value of sharing, but in complex IT environments it is often easier said than done. Various technical barriers and concerns about ownership, security and SLAs can cause line-of-business owners to purposely spend more on... [Continue Reading]
Cloud computing gave rise to a variety of new technologies that are needed for efficient cloud deployments. DevOps and Software Defined Environments (SDE) are among those. These two technologies are designed to support similar IT infrastructures. Let’s explore how DevOps and SDE are designed to complement each other.
What is DevOps?
DevOps is a software development approach that automatically correlates the tasks between development and operations to continuously deliver the required functionality. In the process it also improves collaboration between the two teams.
Overall, DevOps accelerates the deployment of new services and for fast and automated deliveries without new infrastructure expenses.
What is a Software Defined Environment?
The deployment of systems of engagement and systems of records on cloud depends on responsive and adaptive infrastructures. The Software Defined Environment (SDE) approach was developed to cater to such a need.
SDE delivers next-generation infrastructure automation by dynamically assigning the compute , storage and network resources to satisfy application requirements, based on best available resources and the Service Level Agreements (SLAs) that are in place. SDEs provide an “application-aware” infrastructure to support complex applications and systems of engagement ( mobile , social ,... [Continue Reading]
IBM Pulse 2014 , the Premier Cloud Conference, held at MGM Grand Las Vegas from February 23 rd -26 th , delivered an incredible experience. More than 11,000 attendees from across the globe, including over 400 IBM Systems and Storage clients and partners, came to discover how to use cloud as a growth engine for business. With a robust curriculum spanning 6 streams, 23 tracks, over 350 speakers and 60+ Systems and Storage oriented breakout sessions and panels, the conference served as an excellent showcase for exciting new Systems-related Cloud solution announcements.
Let’s recap some of the highlights
The conference kicked off with a full-day Business Partner and Managed Service Providers (MSPs) Summit and Open Cloud Summit where over 100 of our Systems and Storage partners and MSPs engaged in discussions with experts on Open Systems and IBM Software Defined Environments (SDE). The Summit was an opportunity for participants to build skills, hear from executives, meet experts, network with other Business Partners, and fine-tune their strategies for growth.
Our Infrastructure Matters Zone in the Pulse Solution Expo featured the newest Systems and SDE technology initiatives and solutions that IBM offers. Participants interacted with IBM technical teams, participated in over a dozen live demonstrations and shared their experiences with peers. Additionally, the dev@Pulse module provided various Cloud... [Continue Reading]
Many organizations are wrestling with the economics of cloud computing . This is especially true in High Performance Computing (HPC) and analytics where applications often demand clustered, scaled-out infrastructure. These types of workloads are often “spiky” or unpredictable and the costs associated with infrastructure can be substantial.
As a few examples:
A life sciences firm may need compute capacity only at particular stages in the drug development lifecycle
An engineering firm’s workload may vary depending on their active contract portfolio or the specific nature their projects
An insurance firm may require large amounts of computing power to meet regulatory reporting obligations but only for brief periods at month or quarter end
Provisioning infrastructure to meet periodic peaks is costly. Ideas like peak-shaving, out-sourcing and hybrid clouds are not new but organizations seeking to leverage public Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) offerings can run into a variety of technical and business challenges.
How to guarantee quality-of-service (QoS) in multitenant environments
Data management and security
How to manage, meter and throttle the usage of variable cost resources
How to manage commercial software licenses
How to ensure that local assets are fully utilized before tapping assets in the cloud
These business... [Continue Reading]
Businesses large and small are turning to Hybrid Cloud because it unites the best of all worlds - Public Cloud, Private Cloud and dedicated servers working together in any combination. A Hybrid Cloud combines the use of on-premises cloud infrastructure with cloud service provider infrastructure to create a firm’s overall capacity from the combined capabilities. While a hybrid approach promises cost savings and significant gains in IT and business flexibility, some concerns remain around how to manage, secure and integrate on-premises infrastructure with cloud services in hybrid cloud architecture…
Identifying these imperatives, we bring you an exclusive Video Debate session where top IT experts will discuss on when the hybrid clouds are and are not the be-all and end-all and if the infrastructure supporting the hybrid clouds really matters. On Tuesday, March 11th from 11 am-12 pm EDT, the fifth installment of our What’s Next for IT Infrastructure Video Debate will also discuss about the developments in cloud , data , security and many other latest topics and trends that influence your IT infrastructure.
The debate session will be moderated by Kevin Jackson , founder of GovCloud and author of GovCloud: Cloud Computing for the Business of Government . Among the panelists, we will have Steve Strutt - CTO for Cloud Computing, IBM UK and Ireland, Laura DiDio - Principal of ITIC, and Michael A. Salsburg -... [Continue Reading]
Your organization might have deployed a cluster or grid on site. But can these resources always meet your peak demands? For example, what happens when several large projects move into the same simulation and design phase at the same time?
Simply adding hardware to address peak workload requirements, especially if they are short term, is probably not an option. Expanding the physical infrastructure can require significant time, expertise and budget. And the data center may already be maxed out on power, cooling and real estate. What’s the answer?
To address these challenges, at Pulse 2014, IBM announced the IBM Platform Computing Cloud Service , which provides ready-to-run clusters in the SoftLayer cloud that are optimized for compute-intensive technical computing and analytics applications. The Cloud Service comes complete with Platform LSF (SaaS) and Platform Symphony (SaaS) workload management software, dedicated physical machines and the support of the Platform Computing Cloud Operations team.
Organizations that have on-site clusters or grids can quickly address spikes in infrastructure demand by implementing a hybrid cloud. Platform Computing Cloud Service enables these organizations to forward workloads from local infrastructure to a Platform LSF or Platform Symphony cluster in the SoftLayer cloud, quickly accommodating demand without being concerned about security or... [Continue Reading]
Effective management and use of virtualized IT resources is a key pillar of the IBM Software Defined Environment (SDE) strategy. Of course, virtualized IT is nothing new and was invented by IBM back in the late 60s and used until today by many organization as part of Virtual Machine/370 and follow on systems. Users and applications were allocated virtual machines that gave them virtual compute, storage and even cool things like virtual printers and punches!
So what is different about the technology and the environment now that brings virtualization into the forefront of enabling a new wave of IT automation for today's demanding mobile , big data & analytics workloads?
Earlier mainframe virtualization environments and the more recent emergent UNIX and x86 virtualization solutions were based on proprietary formats and interfaces. This left anyone trying to implement an IT automation solution on top of these systems to write multiple implementations or use plugins and abstraction layers to hide the differences. Today, with OpenStack receiving wide spread acceptance as an open standard for virtual IT resource management, solution developers can develop to one interface.
In my early days as a programmer, I wrote automation programs to create and configure VM/370 virtual resources in support of diverse applications. This included carving out virtual disks and allocating... [Continue Reading]
IBM Pulse 2014 – The Premier Cloud Conference is roaring at Las Vegas! More than 11000 attendees from all corners of the globe have joined to hear from top industry thought leaders delivering the knowledge to succeed in the Information and Technology world. Pulse 2014 has already brought forth some great insights and networking opportunities for attendees interested in the developments of Cloud , Software Defined Environments (SDE) , Open Computing and more. David Pogue, a former personal-technology columnist for The New York Times is Pulse 2014 emcee. We’re seeing David adding lot of excitement at the conference with his sharp wit and tech-savvy humor.
Software Defined Environments and Open technologies are among the major attractions at Pulse 2014. Participants are able to learn about the growing value of these technologies through exciting general keynotes sessions, panel discussions, business partner summit, solution expo center, demonstrations, etc. Along with exploring these latest developments, everyone present at Pulse is able to explore wonderful networking opportunities, so that they can make bold business moves in 2014. Needless to say there is an incredible amount of learning and sharing going on at the 4-day conference. Let’s take a look at some of the key highlights of Pulse 2014 :
The conference started with Exciting Sunday Pre-Conference Events including the much... [Continue Reading]
In recent years, Cloud has emerged as an important solution for organizations to ease their computing needs and achieve business objectives. Small and Midsized businesses need to do more with less, and that’s what Cloud is all about. It’s on-demand, always available, and requires almost no setup or capital expense. However, there are number of concerns associated with delivering an effective Cloud architecture. For instance, cost, scalability and security are key considerations when delivering cloud services. Cloud service providers who are building Public and Private Clouds need to keep infrastructure cost down in order to price competitively, and have to ensure stellar security and scalability in multitenant environments. Open technologies like OpenStack , Linux and KVM , help deliver on these requirements for Open Clouds , while small and medium customers are looking for choice, low costs and the opportunity to innovate in their businesses.
Would you like to continue this conversation with your peers to turn your IT practices into profitable realities by adopting Open Clouds? Come join us today at IBM Pulse 2014 –The Premier Global Cloud Conference, as Scott Firth , Director-IBM Software Defined Environments, will explain how IBM enables Cloud Service Providers to build Open Clouds with Open technologies. Martijn van Zoeren, CEO of Dutch Cloud in the Netherlands, and Patrick Fitzgerald, Managing Director of... [Continue Reading]
Those of us who live in the northern hemisphere generally love this time of year. We are on the downhill side of winter and about a month from the beginning of spring. Many of my friends here in the United States are already swinging baseball bats (or at least watching their children swing baseball bats). And at IBM, the smell of Pulse is in the air. Next week in Las Vegas, thousands of our valued clients and trusted partners will engage in a bold discussion on Cloud .
For those who are attending the Pulse Open Cloud Summit on Sunday February 23, or the main Pulse sessions beginning Monday February 24, one speaker of particular interest should be Jamie Thomas , General Manager, IBM Software Defined Systems. Take a moment to follow her on Twitter @tjamieibm .
I was able to get advance copies of both Jamie’s main tent keynote Monday morning at 10am (session KEY-2550A) and her Cloud & Software Defined Environments (SDE) track kickoff Monday afternoon at 1pm (session CET-1463A) . Jamie is a bold thinker and you should expect to walk away with good perspective on Cloud and SDE.
Jamie’s keynote centers on how cloud is changing the way work gets done. The lines between business leaders, developers and IT operations are blurring as they work in concert to compose new business models in a dynamic cloud. You’ll want to pay special attention as Jamie will be making some big announcements... [Continue Reading]
Today, Cloud has become the growth engine for smarter enterprises. When we talk about Cloud – it’s primarily about the shift in delivery and consumption of IT services through technologies like Virtualization or Converged infrastructure. A Software Defined Environment (SDE) is the next evolution of the underlying technology, where the entire IT infrastructure is automated by the software to deliver greater levels of intelligence and value, on top of standardized hardware. SDE is IBM’s approach to provide an ideal architecture for private, public and hybrid clouds, enabling enterprises take advantage of virtualization not just in servers, but also in networking and security, storage and management hence allowing clouds to become more efficient, simplified, responsive and adaptive. Organizations across the world are embracing IBM SDE in order to enhance their Cloud architectures and achieve highest levels of performance, reliability and scalability in their IT infrastructures. Is your IT infrastructure ready to embrace this evolution? Get ready!
At Pulse 2014 – The Premier Cloud Conference, leading experts will discuss how IBM Software Defined Environments help enterprises attain competitive advantage and profitability through speed and efficiency in delivering Cloud services. This year’s Pulse , from February 23rd to 26th, MGM Grand - Las Vegas, will explore the latest developments in Cloud and Software Defined... [Continue Reading]
Pulse 2014 is nearly here, bringing together cloud experts from around the world to discuss the latest technologies, best practices, and new concepts.
One theme that runs throughout Pulse is Open Computing . From the Open Cloud Summit on Sunday to breakouts on key open technologies such as OpenStack, open computing is vital to organizations getting the most out of hybrid clouds. And nowhere is open computing more important than in building an agile and high performance Infrastructure-as-a-Service platform with Software-Defined Environments .
On Tuesday, I’ll be hosting a panel discussion about “ Why Software-Defined Environments need to be built on Open Components ”, with an eminent panel including the analyst Judith Hurwitz, Patrick Fitzgerald who leads the cloud service provider i-Layer, the IBM CTO of software-defined environments Matt Hogstrom, and Andrew Hateley who is an IBM distinguished engineer focusing on cloud performance.
What the panel says will of course be up to them and the questions asked by the audience. However, as a taster for the discussion, I’d like to share why I think open components are so important for effective and efficient clouds .
Software-Defined Environments are, we believe, the way that IaaS clouds will be built in the future, in order to meet the unprecedented demands of the new systems of interaction which integrate traditional systems of... [Continue Reading]
The excitement for Pulse 2014 – The Premier Cloud Conference, has already begun as audiences from across the globe are ready to grace the occasion with their presence on Sunday, February 23rd 2014 at the MGM Grand, Las Vegas. Are you ready?
Join us at Pulse 2014 as we bring you keynote sessions featuring industry’s best practices, expert panel discussions, hands-on labs demonstrations, networking and executive meetings to address your business needs. The 4-day conference will uncover new growth opportunities and get your mind fully covered in Cloud and other cutting-edge technologies along with industry leaders and peers from around the world . Software Defined Environment (SDE) will be one of the major attractions of Pulse 2014 . IBM’s Systems & Technology Group (STG) has arranged exclusive break-out sessions to explain the role that SDE plays in developing a flexible, responsive and highly adaptive Cloud infrastructure. Leading experts from IBM, Forrester Research and our key customer- Infiniti Red Bull Racing will be present to address the sessions. You can find the complete details of the session here .
There will be an STG Business Partner & Managed Service Providers (MSPs) Summit on Sunday, February 23rd 2014 at the Conference Center, Level 3 . The full-day summit will feature special track to help our partners develop skills, build network and fine-tune their... [Continue Reading]
Infrastructure Matters in your Cloud!
When we talk about things that really matter to us in our cloud environments, ultimately it’s really about the driving forces that enable things like responsiveness and adaptability. Cloud, mobile , social and big data environments will rely on an open, agile, flexible and scalable infrastructure foundation, so our IBM Systems and Software Defined Environment offerings will play a critical role in our customers’ ability to leverage innovative technologies to drive business success.
Recognizing these imperatives, IBM Systems & Technology Group (STG) invites you explore the infrastructure implications of emerging trends and discover IBM’s latest capabilities that can help your cloud environments become simplified, responsive and adaptive. At Pulse 2014, February 23-26 - MGM Grand Las Vegas, IBM STG will deliver both strategic and deep dive perspectives and insights. We will explore best practices and roadmaps for business transformation through technologies like Cloud Systems , Software Defined Environments , Open Systems and more. You will see demonstrations from IBM and IBM Business Partners at the Solution Expo and network with over 9,000 of your peers in breakout sessions, networking lounges, community receptions, and product user groups.
As an added feature of Pulse 2014 , IBM STG Business Partners and Managed... [Continue Reading]
In my previous blog , I explained how OpenStack with IBM Platform Resource Scheduler (PRS) features enabled can optimize the infrastructure while helping to meet an applications service level objective. In this blog we will explore how PRS works with the OpenStack native Nova scheduler to optimize the environment. While OpenStack has a default scheduler that allows for the placement of VMs it lacks several key capabilities. Firstly, it only makes decisions based on static information in Nova’s SQL database which is incomplete. Secondly, it schedules resource only once during initial placement. There is no ability to optimize the system at run-time to make decisions to replace VMs as the usage of the environment changes and evolves. OpenStack is flexible enough to allow 3rd party schedulers to fit into the framework to provide enhanced functionality. OpenStack exposes scheduler hints that can be passed at VM creation time either through configuration of the flavor or through the nova boot command. PRS fits seamlessly into the OpenStack environment to provide enhanced value.
PRS enhances OpenStack with superior abilities to place VMs at initial deployment, and re-place VMs on new servers, as conditions change during run time. PRS can support global placement policies across an entire cloud/cluster , as well as on individual application/subsystem/tier deployment. Nova uses the concept of host aggregates to... [Continue Reading]
IBM Platform Resource Scheduler (PRS) adds powerful scheduling and resource optimization capabilities to OpenStack environments. It leverages the experience of IBM in handling large-scale datacenters for high-performance computing, analytics and big data and applies that to new environments. In this blog we give a flavor of how PRS can work together with OpenStack in the context of an online e-commerce store. We will explore how OpenStack with PRS features enabled can optimize the infrastructure while helping to meet an applications service level objective.
On-line retailers are faced with the challenge of rapidly developing applications that deliver personalized shopping experiences across a variety of devices including web, mobile , tablets and in the future connected cars. We examine how such a retailer might develop applications for the delivery of physical or virtual goods. This structure would be typical of any type of retail environment that uses the internet to offer its users access to an online product catalog that they can browse and search, and ultimately make a purchase decision. Leveraging the information of users historic purchase patterns and their contacts gleaned from social networks like Facebook or Twitter , the system can make recommendations about which products they might be interested in. The following provides a high level view of the application architecture. It is meant to be... [Continue Reading]
Over the past couple of months, Software Defined Infrastructures have been quite a hot topic in the IT industry and for IBM. At IBM, we use a more global term: Software Defined Environments (SDEs). There are a number of slightly varying definitions of what SDE means – Matt Hogstrom gave a good definition in one of his recent blogs – but I want to summarize just the most important points from my perspective: SDE is all about application workloads and about using orchestration technology to provide some IT service to end users under certain qualities of services. What started out as Software Defined Compute , Network or Storage using virtualization technology grew to also include middleware and application stacks and into what we call Software Defined Environments today.
One very important aspect with SDE is that workloads have to be described as machine-readable patterns so that orchestration engines can interpret them, can instantiate the required software-defined resources, deploy the respective middleware and application workloads on-top and manage the complete workload to fulfill Service Level Objectives (SLOs). Since those patterns encapsulate quite some expert knowledge and it takes time and skills to create them, it is important to decide on the right format for encoding them. As a pattern author, it is a wise decision to stick to an open, standardized format. This will make your solution portable across... [Continue Reading]
If you thought 2013 was a big year in the world of “ Software Defined ,” brace yourself for 2014. Both Gartner and Forrester Research called out Software Defined as a top 10 strategic technology trend for 2014. A new era of workloads, which we at IBM call Systems of Engagement, is driving this IT transformation to Software Defined Environments (SDE) . Workloads such as mobile , social , and big data & analytics – often delivered via cloud computing – are disrupting today’s IT infrastructures with crushing complexity, rapid demand cycles and accelerating business requirements. SDE helps organizations address this pain through simplified, responsive and adaptive infrastructure solutions.
Automation is at the core of SDE – think of SDE as being the next generation automation in cloud computing environments. SDE enables business users to describe their requirements of the IT environment in a systematic way that in turn drives automation of the infrastructure . Whether it’s deploying new workloads on optimal resources, reconfiguring infrastructure to ensure service objectives, leveraging off-premise clouds for extra capacity, or accelerating software deployment using patterns, automation with SDE is the key for ensuring cost-effectiveness, performance levels and speed. And it’s all based on IT policies and business rules.
At... [Continue Reading]
IBM recently announced Power Virtualization Center (PowerVC) to simplify virtualization management and extend the capabilities of IBM Power Systems . PowerVC unleashes the strengths of IBM Power Systems core platform virtualization through IBM’s collaboration with OpenStack .
The technologies and broad ecosystem that OpenStack brings are driven by a large community of commercial companies and developers with the mission to provide a ubiquitous Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) cloud management platform. This is a huge step forward that will enable you to increase your utilization of the platform and gain greater agility and responsiveness to the increasing changes and demands being placed on your IT infrastructure .
But Wait, there’s more!
PowerVC is also a key enabler for Power Systems within a Software Defined Environment (SDE). Software defined environments represent a significant and important transformation in IT infrastructure virtualization. A Software Defined Environment uses virtualization to express hardware resources as manageable software entities and to control them with advanced programmed automation.
Resource virtualization has reached the point where it applies to all foundational elements of IT infrastructure: servers , storage and network . These elements can be effectively virtualized to present logical projections of the physical resources they... [Continue Reading]
Today’s leading organizations face immense pressure to stay agile and responsive to rapidly-changing, highly competitive business environments. The emergence of cloud , big data , mobile and social is forcing organizations to rethink the way they do business.
In order to quickly and effectively respond to these dynamic market forces, organizations must design an IT infrastructure that is flexible and resilient. Organizations need a new approach to automating IT infrastructures to make them simplified, adaptive and responsive . Software Defined Environment (SDE) to the rescue!
A Software Defined Environment brings the next generation of automation that easily integrates cloud, mobile, social and big data workloads into the existing business operations
A Software Defined Environment is optimized to deliver the agility, efficiency and performance needed for today’s workloads
In my previous blog , I discussed about the growing value of Software Defined Environments in businesses. In this blog, let’s take a look at how SDE is the infrastructure enabler for today’s workloads. Here are a couple of simple examples:
An enterprise solution is gradually being migrated to Cloud . The plan is to incrementally deploy the solution through develop to deploy lifecycle. The SDE approach can be utilized here to define business rules to allocate the required compute, storage and network... [Continue Reading]
Data Centers today have to manage and mine massive volumes of data. Data that seems to be growing at the speed of light and data that is coming from disparate sources. All this can be very complex to manage and very expensive to maintain – for hardware, software, networking in the least. So many organizations are leaning towards moving data centers to Cloud environments to benefit from the shared services concepts and multiple deployment models. Cloud deployment models also leverage the advances in storage and server virtualization and provide these resources to cater to the dynamic systems demands for the organizations.
But the market needs are rapidly changing and thus demands are outpacing the system performance. Even with all the advances made in cloud technologies, the increasing complexity of the solution deployments and system demands are creating bottlenecks. There seems to be an ever increasing need for streamlining and smarter delivery of shared services to make data centers more dynamic and flexible.
The organizations are seeking ‘workload automation and optimization’ and are typically asking for the following:
Workloads: requirement to dynamically assign resources to application based on their needs and best available resources.
Open APIs: The enterprises deploy solutions based on a broad spectrum of solution providers. So there is a stronger demand for a programmable... [Continue Reading]