When a global IT distributor like Ingram Micro gets on board the HaaS (Hardware as a Service) bandwagon, you know it’s really on the move. The concept behind Hardware as a Service is that organisations no longer have to own, support or in general worry about the IT hardware that is present on site. Instead, for a monthly fee, they offload all of these aspects onto a managed server provider and can thus redeploy IT staff on strategic business projects and avoid tying up capital. All of which begs the question – how reliable is that? (more…)
Posts Tagged ‘Cloud Computing’
In the world of disaster recovery, one of the challenges is getting people to approve budget for having the right DR capabilities in place. Unless you are dealing with enlightened senior management, it’s not always easy to get people to sign off for events that may or may not come about, at some indeterminate time in the future. While it’s important to continue the process of education and to keep passing the message about the need to properly prepared, cloud computing offers a parallel “get it for free” approach. (more…)
Despite some claims that that data storage and data recovery are set to become two separate items in computing cloud land, at the moment it’s all in there together: data, the applications that handle that data and the infrastructure that needs to be managed in consequence. IT disaster recovery plans involving cloud now have to deal with new concerns: synchronisation of data records; data privacy; and data availability. With the massive computing power in the cloud and the possibility to replicate computing systems here, there and everywhere, will we now suffer from too much of a good thing? (more…)
There’s something about the number seven that makes it a favourite choice for models of all sorts. They range from the layers of the standard network model (the OSI version at least) to telephone selling methodologies (depending on what you’re selling) and of course colours of the rainbow. Since 1956 and “Miller’s Law” in psychology, seven (“plus or minus two”) is also the number popularly assigned to “the quantity of objects a human being can hold in working memory at any one time”. So, no surprises, here’s a model for seven levels in the use of cloud computing for a business continuity plan.
The “set it and forget it” dream has been around for a while. It has always been tempting to wish that systems could be built in accordance with disaster recovery plans, and then left alone until the moment when circumstances called for them to be activated. Now cloud computing is being hailed as the solution that adjusts itself automatically to changes in DR planning. In a sense, this is true as back-up storage and computing resources can be scaled on demand. However, to use the analogy of a car that responds automatically to commands, there still has to be a driver who stays in control.
Cloud computing, that recent IT evolution, has been hailed as a boon to business continuity plans. Indeed, it has a lot to offer, including IT network redundancy, reduced costs and flexible billing. For these reasons, it immediately scores over traditional hot or cold mirrored data centres with more substantial initial and ongoing costs. Naturally, adequate measures still have to be put in place to make sure that risk and operational performance are acceptable; in some instances, the wholly owned backup data centre still has a role to play. However, cloud computing may still mean two disadvantages that cost more to organisations than they bargained for.
A couple of interesting cases came up recently about differences in cloud backup services, and the effect that this might have on MTO and RTO. As a reminder, maximum tolerable outage (MTO) is the maximum time you or your organisation can afford to be without a given system or resource; recovery time objective (RTO) is your goal for getting a system back in operation. The relationship between the two is MTO = RTO + work recovery (tackling the backlog due to the outage, for instance). In an IT context, whether or not you are over or under the limits set for these measures may depend on how fast you can recover backed-up data – but also on how fast you can back up that data in the first place.
The discussions about cloud computing and business continuity are reminiscent of similar ones a few years back about the use of software as a service (SaaS). The similarities are all the more striking following the recent outages of certain well-known cloud computing services and the questions raised about the viability of cloud computing for strategically sensitive or critical computing requirements. Like SaaS, cloud computing is hailed by some as “next practice” and beyond just “best practice”. On the other hand, unlike SaaS, cloud computing for business continuity may provide more flexibility in that it allows for dynamic redistribution of computing activity. As far as SaaS goes, you either run your application in-house or you pay an SaaS provider to run it for you, but you probably wouldn’t do both just to be able to switch between the two at the very moment any problems start. (more…)
Michael Jenkin from Business Technology Partners, posted an Article in ARN on the 22nd March; discussing redundancy in the IT world.
What an interesting article. This will get you thinking about Cloud Computing solutions for your business. Have you dotted your ‘I’s’ and crossed your ‘T’s’. Have you opted for the cheaper option? Have you missed something?
“Truly, you can never have too much redundancy. You can allow for everything that can possibly go wrong, still something will be left out of your risk analysis and come at you from an unexpected angle.” Michael Jenkin, Too much redundancy is a myth, ARN 22nd March.
Click here to see the full article.
OpsCentre will be hosting a Round Table on the 28th of April at the Vibe Hotel in Sydney; to register click here.
We will be discussing the risks associated with cloud computing with industry professionals.
To get you warmed up for the discussion have a look at this very informative clip posted by Macquarie Telecom discussing Cloud computing and the risks associated with off-site data storage.
Click here to watch the Macquarie Telecom Clip.
Public cloud computing risks are numerous enough to field a top 10 — or even more. Professional organizations and CIOs are developing threat lists to help them come to grips with the public cloud, an entity that will continue to seep into the enterprise IT environment whether they like it or not.
SearchCIO has just published the following article: http://tinyurl4.info/top10risksinpubliccloud