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iPad For Business In case you did not hear, Apple announced the iTouch on steroids aka iPad last week. Apple iPad via www.apple.com Is it a phone? No, its not an iPhone Is it a PC? Well, not in the context of the traditional PC or Mac book What is the iPad or more importantly, what is the possible business angle? First as to what is it, it might be easier to describe what it is not. As mentioned above, it is not an iPhone, granted you can get an iPad with 3G or WiFi for data access (similar to how iTouch has WiFi). Likewise, the iPad is not a PC in the context of running applications traditionally found on Windows PCs or Mac devices. What is it? As far as what is the iPad, here is a link to its specifications, some of which have resulted in confusion. For example, I have seen many comments about how the iPad does not have a camera. Well, not built in however there i... (more)

DevOps: Mission Impossible?

Virtualization needs to move beyond the business value of simply consolidating workloads and saving on power and cooling. Virtualisation now offers the ability for businesses to transform their operational models and more importantly their application lifecycle release management practices. At the recent VMworld held in Barcelona I was lucky enough to present at the vBrownbag sessions to explain how DevOps is now a fundamental methodology for attaining a successful software lifecycle development plan. In this ten minute presentation, we address how the current challenges of existing methodologies and traditional set ups of segregated operations and development teams and how DevOps can enable true agility in the application lifecycle process. We also suggest a Private Cloud model that could essentially be utilised to transform current practices to a DevOps methodology... (more)

Commentary: Sun’s Oracle Merger

Mergers & Acquisitions on Ulitzer With only the ‘you may now kiss the bride’ custom to follow, the Oracle/Sun marriage (or dare I say Sun/Oracle) is now finally complete. After months of legal wrangling which has caused nothing but embarrassment and dwindled Sun’s stature within the market sphere, reports also came out that half of Sun's 27,000 staff will be made redundant. Thus initial indications are clear that Oracle, known for its past agnosticism to open source has an eye for the merger being based on maximizing profit. In the meantime Sun’s competitors are probably smiling wryly as the delay of the merger played into their immediate interests but what threats and challenges does this partnership now pose to the once great open source vendor which did so much for developing the tech and e-commerce industry. One thing which Oracle will most probably do is addres... (more)

Cloud SLAs to Mature

Let’s face it, up until now it seems that cloud providers haven’t been doing such a sterling job guaranteeing the fine print in service level agreements (SLAs) with their customers – given all the recent outages and downtime. But that could all change with CA’s recent acquisition of Oblicore, the service level management innovator. Oblicore specializes in taking technical information about what’s going on in your IT environment and correlating it with the business-level information held in your SLAs. That business-level information is a way for companies to get an accurate view of what cloud and other service providers are truly delivering. Oblicore’s software is integrated with various third party tools that provide detailed input needed for comparison. Not only will cloud providers’ ability to deliver the goods on SLAs further promote and solidify development of... (more)

The Essential Cloud Considerations

Cloud Computing Expo on Ulitzer Thinking about jumping on the cloud? True, I’ve had no qualms in showing my skepticism towards the marketing of ‘cloud computing’ and it being the mere repackaging of solutions which have existed for years, but the fact is it still addresses a concept and reality that exists and one which holds numerous benefits. Indeed abandoning an existing on-site IT infrastructure for a cloud provider that most often or not can’t offer the same level of security, control or performance is not an easy decision but one which CIOs and IT executives are seriously considering when weighing up the economic benefits. As with any change though, a move towards the cloud necessitates a sound and comprehensive assessment to avoid the trap of a short term benefit turning into a long term nightmare. Integration Considerations Firstly your company should assess... (more)

Exchange Completion Time – Redefining Application & Storage Performance

Roll back several years and certain vendors had you believe that Fibre Channel was dead and that the future would be iSCSI. A few years later and certain vendors were then declaring that Fibre Channel was dead again and that the future was FCoE. So while this article is not a iSCSI vs FC or FC vs FCoE comparison list (there's plenty of good ones out there and both iSCSI or FCoE each have immense merit), the point being made here is that Fibre Channel unlike Elvis really is alive and well. Moreover Fibre Channel still remains the protocol of choice for most mission-critical applications despite the FUD that surrounds its cost, manageability and future existence. Most storage folk who run enterprise class infrastructures are advocates of Fibre Channel not only because of its high performance connectivity infrastructure but also due to its reliability, security and scal... (more)

VCOPs - VMware’s Move into Cloud Monitoring

Is VMware slowly becoming the new Oracle? That was the question being asked after the backlash to their initial vRAM licensing model at the launch of vSphere 5. With VMware's somewhat quick retraction, it was ensured that any unsavoury Larry Ellison comparisons were quickly put to bed. Despite this it was still a signal of intent and an indication of VMware's recognition of its ever growing influence and clout. Now as VMware make serious manoeuvers into the PaaS space, a VMware based Cloud monitoring solution is a must. So with this in mind what is to be made of the huge marketing and push for their customers to adopt their VM monitoring tool vCenter Operations 5.0? Back when VMware was only considered ideal for virtualizing test and development environments, the native alarms and performance graphs of the then termed Virtual Center were more than adequate for gener... (more)

The Converged Infrastructure Team: The Final Silo?

Back in the noughties I made the conscious decision as a Storage guy to immerse myself into what was being termed server virtualization and understanding the product offerings of a relatively new company named VMware. To this day I remember the incredulous looks and responses I received from my Storage counterparts, who were convinced that the VMware fad was nothing more than a system admin tool. Indeed the organizations that were early adopters of VMware ended up assigning the virtualization responsibility to the system admins team; at no point was there ever a thought that a dedicated virtualization team could or should be established. Fast forward to 2014 and virtualization teams are the norm and Storage administrators are constantly being hard pressed to have a better understanding of VMware as they provision and manage virtualized environments. Such a culture c... (more)

The Top Virtualization Blog of the Year - 2014

Incredibly it's that time of year again when voting commences for the Top Virtualization blog of the year and I've just been pinged a note that The SANMAN blog has been nominated again for voting! Last year's nomination was also a nice surprise as the blog ended up being a New Entry in the charts at 172 - sure it's not a One Direction hit single that went straight to number one but 172 is still a chart number Kajagoogoo would have been proud of (-; Whether you decide to vote for The SANMAN or not it's still worth having a look at the other nominees and casting your vote for them as there are some great resources across the tech spectrum, including some faves of mine such as the Wikibon blog, TechHead and StorageIO. So while I don't hold any hopes of breaking the Top 100, I did want to take the opportunity to thank all of the readers that visit this site and find it w... (more)

Top Ten Considerations for a Converged Infrastructure Investment

Archie Hendryx looks at the benefits and challenges of managing multiple IT components through a single support solution Many public sector organisations are not changing their ICT legacy systems. As a result, they face increasing number of inefficiencies and challenges. These issues can nevertheless be overcome, and performance increased, by managing these legacy systems within a converged infrastructural environment. This approach can also reduce the risks associated with legacy systems, such as security, missing functionality, increased complexity and operational expenditure. Converged infrastructure simplifies support as it packages multiple IT components from different vendors into one single, optimised computing solution. So it offers end-to-end support unlike reference architectures, which require organisations to deal with a multitude of disparate vendors t... (more)

Manage Azure Blob Storage With Ease

After the Gladinet Cloud Desktop 1.4.232 release, it is fairly easy to manage Azure Blob Storage from your Windows Explorer directly. Feature Highlight: (1) Map a Network Drive Letter to the Azure Blob Storage You can map multiple Azure Blob Storage Account as side-by-side virtual folders in the same network drive. You can do drag-and-drop between local drive and the Azure drive. (2) Schedule Automatic Backup of Files-by-Type. You can backup documents, pictures, music or videos to Azure Blob Storage. (3) Schedule Automatic Backup of Local Folders You can pick local folders to backup to Azure Blob Storage or multiple Azure Blob Storage accounts. You can even backup to Azure Blob Storage + Amazon S3 + AT&T Synaptic Storage + Nirvanix Storage + EMC Atmos Online Storage all at the same time. (4) Cloud-to-Cloud Backup You can backup Google Docs to Microsoft Azure Blob ... (more)