Category Archives: Cloud computing

Be Nimble, Be Quick: A CRN Interview with GreenPages’ CEO

CRN Senior Editor and industry veteran Steve Burke sat down with GreenPages’ CEO Ron Dupler to discuss shifts in ideology in the industry as well as GreenPages new Cloud Management as a Service (CMaaS) offering. The interview, which was originally posted on, is below. What are your thoughts on Ron’s views of the changing dynamics of IT?


CRN:Talk about your new cloud offering.

Dupler:It is available today. We can support physical, virtual and cloud-based infrastructure through a single pane of glass today. We are actually using the technology internally as well.

There is another part of CMaaS that goes into cloud governance and governance models in a cloud world and cloud services brokerage. That is what we are integrating and bringing to market very soon.

CRN:How big a game-changer is CMaaS?

Dupler:I think we are going to be well out in front of the market with this. I personally believe we can go have discussions right now and bring technologies to bear to support those discussions that no one else in the industry can right now.

That said, we know that the pace of innovation is rapid and we expect other organizations are trying to work on these types of initiatives as well. But we believe we’ll be out front certainly for this year.

CRN:How does the solution provider business model change from 2013 to 2018?

Dupler:The way we are looking at our job and the job of the solution provider channel over the next several years through 2018 is to provide IT plan, build, run and governance services for the cloud world.

The big change is that the solution provider channel for many years has made their money off the fact that infrastructure fundamentally doesn’t work very well. And it has been all about architecting and integrating physical technologies and software platforms to support the apps and data that really add value for the business.

When we move to the cloud world, this is now about integrating service platforms as opposed to physical technologies. So it is about architecting and integrating on-premise and cloud service platforms really to create IT-as-a-Service to support the apps and data for the platform. That is the transition that is under way.

CRN:Does the GreenPages brand become bigger than the vendor brand and how does that affect vendor relations in the CMaaS era?

Dupler:We continue to closely evaluate all our key partner relationships. That is managed very closely. What we try to do is make sure we are partnered with the right companies that are really leading this transformation. And our number one partner because they are driving this transformation is VMware. With this whole software-defined data center concept and initiative, VMware has really laid out a great vision for where this market is going.

NEXT: Does Size Matter?

CRN:There is a prevailing view that solution providers need to go big or go home, with many solution providers selling their businesses. Do you see scale becoming more important — that you need to scale?

Dupler:No. People have been saying that for years. It is all about customer value and the talent of your team, if you are adding value for clients. You need to be able to service the client community. And they care about quality of service and the ability of your team. Not necessarily that you are huge. I have been down the M&A road and, as you know, we do M&A here on a smaller scale. And I will tell you there are pros and cons to it. You aggregate talent, but you also have got the inertia of pulling companies together and integrating companies and people and executive teams and getting through that.

I absolutely do not subscribe and never have subscribed to the fact that size in itself gives competitive advantage. There are some advantages, but there are also costs to doing that.

CRN:What is the ultimate measure for success in this new world?

Dupler:It is a combination of three things: technology, and I will firmly say it doesn’t have to be homegrown. It could be homegrown or it could be commercial off-the-shelf. It is the way the technology is leveraged and having the technologies with the ability to drive the services you are trying to provide. What we are trying to do with CMaaS is single pane of glass management for the physical, virtual and cloud infrastructure, which I have mentioned, as well as cloud service brokerage and cloud governance services. You can either develop those on your own or integrate partner technologies or both, but you need the supporting technology base and you need people and you need process.

CRN:How big a transition is this and what percentage of VARs do you think will make it to 2018?

Dupler:The companies that I think are going to have a huge challenge are the big product-centric organizations right now. The DMR [direct marketer] community. They have some big challenges ahead of them over time. All these guys are trying to come up with cloud strategies as well.

Right now there is a premium on being nimble. That is the word of the day for me in 2013. Nimble. You need nimble people and you need a nimble business organization because things are moving faster than they ever have. You just have to have a culture and people that can change quickly.

Going back to is it good just to be big? Sometimes it is hard to maintain [that agility] as you get really big. The magnitude of the change that is required to succeed over the next five years is extremely significant. And people that aren’t already under way with that change have a big challenge ahead of them.

CRN:What is the pace of change like managing in this business as a CEO vs. five years ago?

Dupler:It is exponential.

CRN:Is it tougher to manage in an environment like this?

Dupler:You say it is tougher, but there is more opportunity than ever because of the pace of change to really differentiate yourself. So it can be challenging but it is also very stimulating and exciting.

CRN:Give me five tips you need to thrive in 2018.

Dupler:First of all, you need hybrid cloud management capabilities.

Number two, you need cloud services brokerage capabilities. It is ultimately an ability to provide a platform for clients to acquire as-a-service technologies from GreenPages. To be able to sell the various forms of infrastructure, platform and software as a service.

Number three is cloud architecture and integration capabilities.

Fourth is product revenue and profit streams are not central to supporting the business. The service model needs to become a profitable, thriving stand-alone entity without the product revenue streams.

The fifth thing and it is the biggest challenge. One thing is migrating your technology organization. Then the next thing you need to do is create a services-based sales culture.

CRN:Talk about how big a change that is.

Dupler:It is a huge change. Again, if people are not already under way with this change they have a huge challenge ahead of them. Everybody I speak with in the industry — whether it is at [UBM Tech Channel’s] BoB conference or at partner advisory councils — everybody is challenged with this right now. The sales force in the solution provider industry has been old paradigm physical-technology-based and needs to move into a world where it is leading with professional and managed services. And that game is very different. So I think there are two ways to address that: one is hiring new types of talent or helping the talent we all have transform. It is going to be a combination of both that gets us ultimately where we need to be.

CRN:What do you think is the biggest mistake being made right now by competitors or vendors?

Dupler:What I see is people that are afraid to embrace the change that is under way and are really hanging on to the past. The biggest mistake I see right now is people continuing to evangelize solutions to customers that aren’t necessarily right by the customer, but conform to what they know and drive the most profit for their organizations.

Short-term gain isn’t going to drive long-term customer value. And we need to lead the customers forward through this transformation as opposed to perpetuating the past. The market needs leadership right now. The biggest challenge for people is not moving fast enough to transform their businesses.

This interview was originally posted on

To learn more about GreenPages’ CMaaS offering click here!

Guest Post: A Wrinkle in the IT Universe

By Kai Gray, VP of Operations at Carbonite

I feel like tectonic plates are shifting beneath the IT world. I’ve been struggling to put my finger on what it is that is making me feel this way, but slowly things have started to come into focus. These are my thoughts on how cloud computing has forever changed the economics of IT by shifting the balance of power.

The cloud has fundamentally changed business models; it has shifted time-to-market, entry points and who can do what. These byproducts of massive elasticity are wrapped up in an even greater evolutionary change that is occurring right now: The cloud is having a pronounced impact on the supply chain, which will amount to a tidal wave of changes in the near-term that will cause huge pain for some and spawn incredible innovation and wealth for others. As I see it, the cloud has started a chain of events that will change our industry forever:

1) Big IT used to rule the datacenter. Not long ago, large infrastructure companies were at the heart of IT. The EMCs, Dells, Ciscos, HPs and IBMs were responsible for designing, sourcing, supplying and configuring the hardware that was behind nearly all of the computing and storage power in the world. Every server closest was packed full of name-brand equipment and the datacenter was no different. A quick tour of any datacenter would – and still will – showcase the wares of these behemoths of the IT world. These companies developed sophisticated supply and sales channels that produced great margins businesses built on some very good product. This included the OEMs and ODMs that produced bent metal to the VARs and distributors who then sold their finish products. Think of DeBeers, the diamond mine owner and distributor. What are the differences between a company like HP and DeBeers? Not very much, but the cloud began to change all that.

2) Cloud Computing. Slowly we got introduced to the notion of cloud computing. We started using products that put the resource away from us, and (slowly) we became comfortable with not needing to touch the hardware. Our email “lived” somewhere else, our backups “lived” somewhere else and our computing cycles “lived” somewhere else. With each incremental step, our comfort levels rose until it stopped being a question and turned into an expectation. This process set off a dramatic shift in supply chain economics.

3) Supply Chain Economics. The confluence of massive demand coupled with near-free products (driven by a need to expand customer acquisition) changed how people had to think about infrastructure. All of a sudden, cloud providers had to think about infrastructure in terms of true scalability. This meant acquiring and managing massive amounts of infrastructure at the lowest possible cost. This was/is fundamentally different from the way the HPs and Dells and Ciscos thought about the world. All of a sudden, those providers were unable to address the needs of this new market in an effective way. This isn’t to say that the big IT companies can’t, just that it’s hard for them. It’s hard to accept shrinking margin and “openness.”  The people brave enough to promote such wild ideas are branded as heretics and accused of rocking the boat (even as the boat is sinking). Eventually the economic and scale requirements forced cloud providers to tackle the supply chain and go direct.

4) Going Direct. As cloud providers begin to develop strong supply chain relationships and build up their competencies around hardware engineering and logistics, they begin to become more ingrained with the ODMs ( and other primary suppliers. Huge initiatives came into existence from the likes of Amazon, Google and Facebook that are focused on driving down the cost of everything. For example, Google began working directly with Intel and AMD to develop custom chipsets that allow them to run at efficiency levels never before seen, and Facebook started the Open Compute Project that seeks to open-source design schematics that were once locked in vaults.

In short, the supply chain envelope gets pushed by anyone focused on cost and large-scale.

…and here it gets interesting.

Cloud providers now account for more supplier revenue than the Big IT companies. Or, maybe better stated — cloud providers account for more hope of revenue (HoR) than Big IT. So, what does that mean? That means that the Big IT companies no longer receive the biggest discounts available from the suppliers. The biggest discounts are going to the end users and the low-margin companies built solely on servicing the infrastructure needs of cloud providers. This means that Big IT is at even more of a competitive disadvantage than they already were. The cycle is now in full swing. If you think this isn’t what is happening, just look at HP and Dell right now. They don’t know how to interact with a huge set of end users without caving in their margins and cannibalizing their existing businesses. Some will choose to amputate while others will go down kicking, but margin declines and openness of information will take their toll with excruciating pain.

What comes of all this? I don’t know. But here are my observations:

1) Access to the commodity providers (ODMs and suppliers) is relatively closed. To be at all interesting to ODMs and suppliers you have to be doing things at enough volume that it is worthwhile for them to engage with you. That will change. The commodity suppliers will learn how to work in different markets but there will be huge opportunity for companies that help them get there. When access to ODMs and direct suppliers gets opened up to traditional Enterprise companies so they can truly and easily take advantage of commodity hardware through direct access to suppliers then, as they say, goodnight.

2) Companies that provide some basic interfaces between the suppliers and the small(er) consumers will do extremely well. For me, this means configuration management of some sort, but it could be anything that helps accelerate the linkage between supplier and end-user . The day will come when small IT shops have direct access to suppliers and are able to custom-build hardware in same way that huge cloud providers do today. Some might argue that there is no need for small shops to do this — that they can use other cloud providers, that it’s too time consuming to do it on their own, and that their needs are not unique enough to support such a relationship. Yes, yes, and yes… for right now. Make it easy for companies to realize the cost and management efficiencies of direct supplier access and I don’t know of anyone that wouldn’t take you up on that. Maybe this is the evolution of the “private cloud” concept but all I know is that, right now, the “private cloud” talk is being dominated by the Big IT folks so the conflict of interest is too great.

3) It’s all about the network. I don’t think the network is being addressed in the same way as other infrastructure components. I almost never hear about commodity “networks,” yet I constantly hear about commodity “hardware.” I’m not sure why. Maybe Cisco and Juniper and the other network providers are good at deflecting or maybe it’s too hard of a problem to be solved or maybe the cost isn’t a focal point (yet). Whatever the reason, I think this is a huge problem/opportunity. Without the network, everything else can just go away. Period. The entire conversation driving commodity-whatever is predicated around delivering lots of data to people at very low-cost. The same rules that drive commoditization need to be applied to the network and right now I only know of 1 or 2 huge companies that are even thinking in these terms.

There are always multiple themes in play at any given time that, when looking back, we summarize as change. People say that the Internet changed everything. And, before that, the PC changed everything. What we’re actually describing is a series of changes that happened over a period of time that have the cumulative effect of making us say, “How did we ever do X without Y?” I believe that the commoditization of infrastructure is just one theme among the change that will be described as Cloud Computing. I contend, however, the day is almost upon us when everybody, from giant companies to the SMB, will say, “Why did we ever buy anything but custom hardware directly from the manufacturer?”

This post originally appeared on  It does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of GreenPages Technology Solutions.

To Learn more about GreenPages Cloud Computing Practice click here.

Is Cloud Computing Ready for Prime Time?

By John Dixon, Senior Solutions Architect


A few weeks ago, I took part in another engaging tweetchat on Cloud Computing. The topic: is cloud computing ready for enterprise adoption? You can find the transcript here.


As usual with tweetchats hosted by CloudCommons, five questions are presented a few days in advance of the event. This time around, the questions were:

  1. Is Public Cloud mature enough for enterprise adoption?
  2. Should Public Cloud be a part of every business’s IT strategy?
  3. How big of a barrier are legacy applications and hardware to public cloud adoption?
  4. What’s the best way to deal with cloud security?
  5. What’s the best way to get started with public cloud?


As far as Question #1, the position of most people in the chat session this time was that Public Cloud is mature enough for certain applications in enterprises today. The technology certainly exists to run applications “in the cloud” but regulations and policies may not be ready to handle an application’s cloud deployment. Another interesting observation from the tweetchat was that most enterprises are indeed running applications “in the cloud” right now. GreenPages considers applications such as Concur and as running “in the cloud.” And of course, many organizations large and small run these applications successfully. I’d also consider ADP as a cloud application. And of course, many organizations make use of ADP for payroll processing.

Are enterprises mature enough for cloud computing?

Much of the discussion during question #1 turned the question on end – the technology is there, but enterprises are not ready to deploy applications there. GreenPages’ position is that, even if we assume that cloud computing is not yet ready for prime time, then it certainly will be soon. Organizations should prepare for this eventuality by gaining a deep understanding of the IT services they provide, and how much a particular IT service costs. When one or more of your IT services can be substituted for one that runs (reliably and inexpensively) in the cloud, will your company be able to make the right decision to take advantage of that condition? Also, another interesting observation: some public cloud offerings may be enterprise-ready, but not all public cloud vendors are enterprise-grade. We agree.

Should every business have a public cloud strategy?

Most of the discussion here pointed to a “yes” answer. Or that an organization’s strategy will eventually, by default, include consideration for public cloud. We think of cloud computing as a sourcing strategy in and of itself – especially when thinking of IaaS and PaaS. Even now, IaaS vendors are essentially providers of commodity IT services. Most commonly, IaaS vendors can provide you with an operating system instance: Windows or Linux. For IaaS, the degree of abstraction is very high, as an operating system instance can be deployed on a wide range of systems – physical, virtual, paravirtual, etc. The consumer of these services doesn’t mind where the OS instance is running, as long as it is performing to the agreed SLA. Think of Amazon Web Services here. Depending on the application that I’m deploying, there is little difference whether I’m using infrastructure that is running physically in Northern Virginia or in Southern California. At GreenPages, we think that this degree of abstraction will move in to the enterprise as corporate IT departments evolve to behave more like service providers… and probably evolve in to brokers of IT services – supported by a public cloud strategy.

Security and legacy applications

Two questions revolved around legacy applications and security as barriers to adoption. Every organization has a particular application that will not be considered for cloud computing. The arguments are similar for the reasons why we never (or, are just beginning to) virtualize legacy applications. Sometimes, virtualizing specialized hardware is, well, really hard and just not worth the effort.

What’s the best way to get started with public cloud?

“Just go out and use Amazon,” was a common response to this question, both in this particular tweetchat and in other discussions. Indeed, trying Amazon for some development activities is not a bad way to evaluate the features of public cloud. In our view, the best way to get started with cloud is to begin managing your datacenter as if it were a cloud environment, with some tool that can manage traditional and cloud environments the same way. Even legacy applications. Even applications with specialized hardware. Virtual, physical, paravirtual, etc. Begin to monitor and measure your applications in a consistent manner. This way, when an application is deployed to a cloud provider, your organization can continue to monitor, measure, and manage that application using the same method. For those of us who are risk-averse, this is the easiest way to get started with cloud! How is this done? We think you’ll see that Cloud Management as a Service (CMaaS) is the best way.

Would you like to learn more about our new CMaaS offering? Click here to receive some more information.

Getting Out of the IT Business

Randy Weis, Director of Solutions Architecture

Strange title for a blog from an IT solutions architect? Not really.

Some of our clients—a lumber mill, a consulting firm, a hospital—are starting to ask us how to get out of “doing IT.” What do these organizations all have in common? They all have a history of challenges in effective technology implementations and application projects leading to the CIO/CTO/CFO asking, “Why are we in the IT business? What can we do to offload the work, eliminate the capital expenses, keep operating expenses down, and focus our IT efforts on making our business more responsive to shifting demands and reaching more customers with a higher satisfaction rate?”

True stories.

If you are in the business of reselling compute, network, or storage gear, this might not be the kind of question you want to hear.

If you are in the business of consulting on technology solutions to meet business requirements, this is exactly the kind of question you should be preparing to answer. If you don’t start working on those answers, your business will suffer for it.

Technology has evolved to the point where the failed marketing terms of grid or utility computing are starting to come back to life—and we are not talking about zombie technology. Cloud computing used to be about as real as grid or utility computing, but “cloud” is no longer just a marketing term. We now have new, proven, and emerging technologies that actually can support a utility model for information technology. Corporate IT executives now are starting to accept that the new cloud computing infrastructure-as-a-service is reliable (recent AWS outages not withstanding) predictable, and useful to a corporate strategy. Corporate applications still need to be evaluated for requirements that restrict deployment and implementation strategies–latency, performance, concerns over satisfying legal/privacy/regulatory issues, and so on. However, the need to have elastic, scalable, on-demand IT services that are accessible anywhere is starting to force even the most conservative executives to look at the cloud for offloading non-mission critical workloads and associated costs (staff, equipment, licensing, training and so on). Mission critical applications can still benefit from cloud technology, perhaps only as internal or private cloud, but the same factors still apply—reduce time to deploy or provision, automate workflow, scale up or down as dictated by business cycles, and push provisioning back out into the business (while holding those same units accountable for the resources they “deploy”).

Infrastructure as a service is really just the latest iteration of self-service IT. Software as a service has been with us for some time now, and in some cases is the default mode—CRM is the best example (e.g. Salesforce). Web-based businesses have been virtualizing workloads and automating deployment of capacity for some time now as well. Development and testing have also been the “low hanging fruit” of both virtualization and cloud computing. However, when the technology of virtualization reached a certain critical mass, primarily driven by VMware and Microsoft (at least at the datacenter level), then everyone started taking a second look at this new type of managed hosting. Make no mistake—IaaS is managed hosting, but New and Improved. Anyone who had to deal with provisioning and deployment at AT&T or other large colocation data centers (and no offense meant) knew that there was no “self-service” involved at all. Deployments were major projects with timelines that rivaled the internal glacial pace of most IT projects—a pace that led to the historic frustration levels that drove business units to run around their own IT and start buying IT services with a credit card at Amazon and Rack Space.

If you or your executives are starting to ask yourselves if you can get out of the day-to-day business of running an internal datacenter, you are in good company. Virtualization of compute, network and storage has led to ever-greater efficiency, helping you get more out of every dollar spent on hardware and staff. But it has also led to ever-greater complexity and a need to retrain your internal staff more frequently. Information Technology services are essential to a successful business, but they can no longer just be a cost center. They need to be a profit center; a cost of doing business for sure, but also a way to drive revenues and shorten time-to-market.

Where do you go for answers? What service providers have a good track record for uptime, customer satisfaction, support excellence and innovation? What technologies will help you integrate your internal IT with your “external” IT? Where can you turn to for management and monitoring tools? What managed services can help you with gaining visibility into all parts of your IT infrastructure, that can deal with a hybrid and distributed datacenter model, that can address everything from firewalls to backups? Who can you ask?

There is an emerging cadre of thought leaders and technologists that have been preparing for this day, laying the foundation, developing the expertise, building partner relationships with service providers and watching to see who is successful and growing…and who is not. GreenPages is in the very front line of this new cadre. We have been out in front with virtualization of servers. We have been out in front with storage and networking support for virtual datacenters. We have been out in front with private cloud implementations. We are absolutely out in front of everyone in developing Cloud Management As A Service.

We have been waiting for you. Welcome. Now let’s get to work.For more information on our Cloud Management as a Service Offering click here

IT Multi-Tasking: I Was Told There’d Be No Math

By Ben Sawyer, Solutions Engineer


The term “multi-tasking” basically means doing more than one thing at once.  I am writing this blog while playing Legos w/ my son & helping my daughter find New Hampshire on the map.  But I am by no means doing more than one thing at once; I’m just quickly switching back & forth between the three which is referred to ask “context switching.”  Context switching in most cases is very costly.  There is a toll to be paid in terms of productivity when ramping up on a task before you can actually tackle that task. In an ideal world (where I also have a 2 handicap) one has the luxury to do a task from start to finish before starting a new task.  My son just refuses to let me have 15 minutes to write this blog because apparently building a steam roller right now is extremely important.  There is a sense of inertia when you work on a task after a short while because you begin to really concentrate on the task at hand.  Since we know it’s nearly impossible to put ourselves in a vacuum & work on one thing only, the best we can hope for is to do “similar” things (i.e., in the same context) at the same time.  Let’s pretend I have to email my co-worker that I’m late writing a blog, shovel my driveway, buy more Legos at, & get the mail (okay, I’m not pretending).  Since emailing & buying stuff online both require me to be in-front of my laptop and shoveling & going to my mailbox require me to be outside my house (my physical location), it would be far more efficient to do the tasks in the same “context” at the same time.  Think of the time it takes to get all bundled up & the time it takes to power on your laptop to get online.  Doing a few things at once usually means that you will not do that task as well (its quality) as you would have had you done it uninterrupted.  The more closely, time-wise, you can do a task usually means the better you will do that task since it will be “fresher” in your mind.  So…

  • Entire Task A + Entire Task B = Great Task A & Great Task B.
  • 1/2 Task A + Entire Task B + 1/2 Task A = Okay Task A & Excellent Task B.
  • 1/2 Task A + 1/2 Task B + 1/2 Task A + 1/2 Task B = Good Task A & Good Task B

Why does this matter?  Well, because the same exact concept applies to computers & the software we write.  A single processor can do one thing at a time only (let’s forget threads), but it can context switch extremely fast which gives the illusion of multi-tasking.  But, like a human, context switching has a cost for a computer.  So, when you write code try to do many “similar” things at the same time.  If you have a bunch of SQL queries to execute then you should open a connection to the database first, execute them, & close the connection.  If you need to call some VMware APIs then you should connect to vCenter first, do them, & close the connection.  Opening & closing connections to any system is often slow so group your actions by context which, in this case, are systems.  This also makes the code easier to read.  Speaking of reading, here’s a great example of the cost of context switching.  The author Tom Clancy loves to switch characters & plot lines every chapter.  This makes following the story very hard & whenever you put the book down & start reading again it’s nearly impossible to remember where you left off b/c there’s never, ever a good stopping point.  Tom Clancy’s writing is one of the best examples of how costly context switching is.

So, what does this have to do with cloud computing?  Well, it ties in directly with automation & orchestration.  Automation is doing the work & orchestration is determining the order in which work is done.  Things can get complicated quickly when numerous tasks need to be executed & it’s not immediately apparent which need to run first & which are dependent on other tasks.  And, once that is all figured out, what happens when a task fails?  While software executes linearly, an orchestration engine provides the ability to run multiple pieces of software concurrently.  And that’s where things get complicated real fast.  Sometimes it may make sense to execute things serially (one at a time) vs. in parallel (more than one at a time) simply b/c it becomes very hand to manage more than one task at the same time.

We live in a world in which there are 10 different devices from which we can check our email and, if we want, we can talk to our smartphone & ask it to read our email to us.  Technology has made it easy for us to get information virtually any time & in any format we want.  However, it is because of this information overload that our brains have trouble separating all the useful information from the white noise.  So we try to be more productive and we multi-task but that usually means we’re becoming more busy than productive.  In blogs to follow, I will provide some best practices for determining when it makes sense to run more than one task at a time.  Now, if you don’t mind, I need to help my daughter find Maine…


Research and Markets: Potential of Cloud Computing

Research and Markets has announced the addition of the “Potential of Cloud Computing” report to their offering.

First there was the advent of the Internet that changed the manner in which we do business forever. Now, with the advent of cloud computing, the world is ready to undergo another major shift in terms of technology.

Cloud computing is an internet-based process that makes it possible to share information, software and even resources from computers to other devices all through the internet. The concept of cloud computing brings forth a new delivery model for IT services that are conducting businesses over the Internet. The process generally involves provision of scalable and virtualized resources over the internet. Not only does the process provide ease-of-access, but the speed and overall reliability of the entire concept of cloud computing is changing the IT industry rapidly.

Taiyou Research presents an analysis of the Potential of Cloud Computing.

Key Topics Covered:

1. Executive Summary

2. Overview of Cloud Computing

3. Market Profile

4. Benefits of Deploying the Cloud

5. Cost Benefits to Organizations from Cloud Systems

6. Cloud Computing Delivery Modes

7. Cloud Computing Deployment Models

8. Understanding the Concept behind Cloud Computing

9. Application Programming Interfaces

10. Cloud Computing Taxonomy

11. Deployment Process of the Cloud System

12. Technical Features of Cloud Systems

13. Understanding Cloud Clients

14. Regulatory Landscape & Investment

15. Commercializing of Cloud Computing

16. Concepts Related to Cloud Computing

17. Cloud Computing versus Other Computing Paradigms

18. Cloud Exchanges and Markets Worldwide

19. Research Projects on Cloud Computing

20. Cloud Computing Case Studies

21. Future of Cloud Computing

22. Market Leaders

23. Appendix

24. Glossary

Kids on Work Devices, Bubble Wrap, and Why Every IT Organization Should Support BYOD.

Francis Czekalski, GreenPages Enterprise Consultant talks about the challenges that IT professionals face today when dealing with BYOD—from supporting devices to dealing with employee behavior—and offers some coping strategies for living in the BYOD Era.


If you’re looking for more information, we will be holding free event in Atlanta on November 28th to discuss cloud management, virtualization, VDI, datacenter clusters, and more. Click for more information and to register- space is limited and filling up quickly!

Learn More About BYOD

To learn more about BYOD policy and strategy, please fill out this form and we will get in touch with you shortly.

CyrusOne, Dell, R Systems Partner for Oil & Gas Cloud-Based Solution

CyrusOne, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cincinnati Bell, announced today that its Houston West colocation facility is housing and enabling the first-ever enterprise high performance computing (HPC) Cloud solution from Dell and R Systems. The two companies have teamed together to establish a working “project partner” alliance, offering customized HPC solutions for clients.

Leveraging dedicated, secure and powerful computing resources for periods between one day and one year, the enterprise HPC Cloud solution enables companies to align performance compute directly to project periods and technology refresh cycles, to optimize resources and take advantage of the fastest compute technology available. HPC cloud solutions are an alternative to legacy IT infrastructures because they are faster to deploy, easily scale to uses and business cycles, and require less capital and operating investment.

“We see the combination of HPC and cloud technologies as an incredibly powerful solution with tremendous customer benefit,” says Nnamdi Orakwue, vice president, Dell Cloud. “Customers who need immediate, high-performing computing solutions for shorter time frames can quickly realize revenue opportunities. Dell continues to invest in cloud enabling solutions to help our customers achieve faster business results.”

The enterprise HPC Cloud solution frees companies from having to manage HPC environments and resources so that they can focus on running their businesses, not data centers. Oil and Gas companies use HPC to more rapidly analyze large amounts of geological data enabling these organizations to make wiser operational decisions and get to market faster, which amounts to improved financial performance.

To mitigate any performance risks, Dell and R Systems chose to launch the cloud-based solution in CyrusOne’s highly reliable enterprise data center colocation facility in Houston. The facility offers the highest power redundancy (2N architecture) and power-density infrastructure required to deliver excellent availability.

“It was a natural progression in our support of the oil and gas industry to move from supporting traditional hardware and processing for the data intensive industry to enabling a cloud-based solution,” said Kevin Timmons, chief technology officer, CyrusOne. “Sky for the Cloud creates an ecosystem to efficiently facilitate the generation, analysis, and sharing of all the geophysical data locally and statewide.”

CyrusOne’s Sky for the Cloud™ peering and interconnection platform enables Cloud applications in a customized data hall, designed for maximizing power usage effectiveness (PUE). It encompasses peering within a single location, to more quickly and affordably pull content from the edge of the Internet to the heart of the data center. The company is expected to launch later this year, the first statewide Internet exchange in the country that will connect all CyrusOne facilities in Texas—including Austin, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio. The platform provides customers freedom of choice about how to build out capacity choosing either CyrusOne’s bandwidth marketplace, Internet exchange platform, or a cross-connect to cloud services.

CyrusOne has designed data center locations across the United States, Europe, and Asia that give customers the flexibility and scale to perfectly match their specific growth needs. In August 2012, the company announced plans to expand its Houston West site such that once fully complete, the facility will have more than 300,000 square feet of data center space, making it the oil and gas industry’s largest digital energy campus and a true geophysical center of excellence for seismic exploration computing.

The HPC Cloud solution from Dell and R Systems can support any industry requiring complex computing, including: oil and gas, finance, healthcare/life sciences, manufacturing and media.

Evolving to a Broker of Technology Services: Planning the Solution

By Trevor Williamson, Director, Solutions Architecture

A 3-Part Series:

  • Part 1: Understanding the Dilemma
  • Part 2: Planning the Solution
  • Part 3: Executing the Solution, again and again

Part 2: Planning the Solution

As I wrote before and continuing with part 2 of this 3-part series, let’s talk about how we plan the solution for automating IT services and service management within your organization so that you can develop, deliver, and support services in a more disciplined way—which means that your customers will trust you. Of course this doesn’t mean that they won’t pursue outsourced, cloud, or other third-party services—but they will rely on you to get the most out of those services.  And once you do go through this process, some of the major benefits for implementing an automated service management infrastructure are:

  • Improved staff productivity that allows your business to become more competitive. Your time is too valuable to be spent fighting fires and performing repetitive tasks. If you prevent the fires and automate the repetitive tasks, you can focus on new projects and innovation instead. When you apply automation tools to good processes, productivity skyrockets to a level unachievable by manual methods.
  • Heightened quality of service that improves business uptime and customer experience. Consistent execution according to a well-defined change management process, for example, can dramatically reduce errors, that in turn improves uptime and customer experience because in today’s age of continuous operations and unrelenting customer demand, downtime can erode your competitive edge quickly. Sloppy change management can cause business downtime that prevents customers from buying online or reduces the productivity of your workforce.
  • Reduced operational costs to reinvest in new and innovative initiatives. It’s been said that keeping the lights on—the costs to maintain ongoing operations, systems, and equipment—eats up roughly 80% of the overall IT budget rather than going to new or innovative projects. With more standardized and automated processes, you can improve productivity and reduce operational costs allowing you the freedom to focus on more strategic initiatives.
  • Improved reputation with the business. Most self-aware IT organizations acknowledge that their reputation with business stakeholders isn’t always sterling. This is a critical problem, but you can’t fix it overnight—changing an organization’s culture, institutionalized behaviors, and stereotypes takes time and energy. If you can continue to drive higher productivity and quality through automated service management, your business stakeholders will take notice.

A very important aspect of planning this new infrastructure is to look toward, in fact assume, that the range of control will necessarily span both internal and external resources…that you will be stretching into public cloud spaces—not that you will always know you’re there until after the fact—and that you will be managing them (at least monitoring them) with the same level of granularity that you do with your traditional resources.

This includes integrating the native functionality of those off-premises services—reserving virtual machines and groups of machines, extending reservations, cloning aggregate applications, provisioning storage, etc., and connecting them to an end-to-end value chain of IT services that can be assessed, monitored and followed from where the data resides to where it is used by the end user:

It is through this holistic process—rationalized, deconstructed, optimized, reconstituted and ultimately automated—that the system as a whole can be seen as a fully automated IT services management infrastructure, but believe me when I say that this is not nor will it ever be an easy task.  When you are looking to plan how you automate your service management infrastructure, you need a comprehensive approach that follows a logical and tightly controlled progression.  By whatever name you call the methodology (and there are many out there) it needs to be concise, comprehensive, capable, and, above all else, controlled:

1. Identify the trends, justify the business case, and assess your maturity. Before investing in an automated service management infrastructure, you have to assess the opportunity, build the business case, and understand the current state. This phase will answer the following questions:

o    Why is automated service management important to my business?

o    What are the business and IT benefits?

o    How prepared is my organization to tackle this initiative?

2.  Develop your strategic plan, staffing plan, and technology roadmaps. You translate what you learn from the prior phase into specific automated service management strategies. The goal of this phase is to help you answer these key questions:

o    Do I have the right long-term strategic vision for automated service management?

o    What are my stakeholders’ expectations, and how can I deliver on them?

o    What technologies should I invest in and how should I prioritize them?

3.  Invest in your skills and staff, policies and procedures, and technologies and services. This phase is designed to execute on your automated service management strategies. This phase will answer the following people, process, and technology questions:

o    What specific skills and staff will I need, and when?

o    What policies and procedures do I need to develop and enforce?

o    Should I build and manage my own technology capabilities or use external service providers?

o    What specific vendors and service providers should I consider?

4.  Manage your performance, develop metrics, and communicate and train. Finally, to help you refine and improve your automated service management infrastructure, the goal in this phase is to help you answer these key questions:

o    How should I adjust my automated service management plans and budgets?

o    What metrics should I use to track my success?

o    How should I communicate and train stakeholders on new automated service management policies and technologies?

These phases and the associated questions to be answered are just a taste of what is required when you are thinking of moving toward an automated service management infrastructure—and of course GreenPages is here to help—especially when you are in the planning stages.  The process is not painless and it is certainly not easy but the end result, the journey in fact, is well worth the time, effort and investment to accomplish it.

Next…Part 3: Executing the Solution, again and again…

If you’re looking for more information, we will be holding free events in Boston, NYC, and Atlanta to discuss cloud computing, virtualization, VDI, clustered datacenters, and more. We’ll have a bunch of breakout sessions, and it will also be a great opportunity to network with peers.


Cloud Corner Series- Is Automation & Orchestration Like Taking a Shower?

I sat down yesterday to talk about automating and orchestrating business processes and how it is critical in a cloud environment. I hope you enjoy it- even if the info stinks, at least you have 5 minutes of eye candy watching yours truly!

If you’re looking for more information on cloud management GreenPages has two, free events coming up (one in Boston & one in NYC). Click for more information and to register- space is limited and filling up quickly so check it out!