Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Zakia Bouachraoui, Carmen Gonzalez

Related Topics: @CloudExpo

@CloudExpo: Blog Post

The Three Biggest Tech Barriers to Cloud Computing

A Network Perspective

I recently posted about the Dizzying Economics of Cloud Computing when it occurred to me that the technological barriers must be equally mystifying for many.  So I thought I would initiate a discussion about the barriers to the adoption of cloud computing by the enterprise.

At stake are the valuations of a gathering storm of public companies in technology, from Cisco, Juniper, F5 Networks, VMware, IBM, VMware, Microsoft and Citrix to advertising player Google and bookseller Amazon.  The shape of adoption and growth will be impacted by how these barriers are addressed.

As I mentioned in "Dizzying Economics..." there is a business case war coming between the current cloud providers and the enterprise IT world.  As these barriers are broken with innovation, cloud will move from consumer and SMB (small medium business) into larger and larger enterprise deployments.  As a networking pundit, I see the three barriers in a network-centric perspective, from network security to the physical network and network management requirements.

Cloud Will Depend on New Approaches to Security
The biggest payoff of cloud computing comes from its potential to consolidate millions of servers (and the considerable amount of management and energy expenses) into dynamic meshes that can be created on demand; transforming IT from hardware-bound silos into just in time IT services delivered at any time from the most advantageous location.

Yet each one of those silos today is protected by a variety of mostly static security technologies.  There are few viable solutions to the movement and change enabled by VMotion, or the ability of a server to move to its most cost-effective location at the time it is spun up.  And most of those solutions were architected for specialized hardware, not commodity blade servers. 

Today's world of network security solutions were simply not architected to keep up with the movement required for cloud to deliver on its promise of consolidation and cost efficiencies.

Yet without that movement, cloud just becomes another silo with tactical automation.  One of my favorite blogs for cloud security is Chris Hoff's blog.  Rather than drag you through the issues, check it out.

VMware purchased my alma mater Blue Lane Technologies last year.  I think it was a smart move to address the emerging needs of its data center customers lured by the promise of cloud computing.

Cloud Can Break Static Networks
This year there has been a surge of content about Infrastructure 2.0 or dynamic infrastructure.  Out of the discussion have been some interesting comments by conversation participants, from Cisco's Doug Gourlay and James Urquhart to F5's Erik Giesa and Lori MacVittie and VMware's Mark Thiele.

The network effects of cloud computing, which broke through the noise at a Cisco data center blog in December 2008, kicked off a discussion of multiple issues: from network switching to network management challenges.  Cisco's Gourlay will be talking about the impact of cloud on the network at the exclusive, "thought leaders only" FIRE Conference later this month in San Diego.  Don't expect him to pull any punches.

The physical hardware switching issues are being addressed but the leading players are by no means finished with what needs to be done in order to enable the pulsing fabric needed to ensure the cloud's integrity and business case promise.  There have been an exciting and relevant string of announcements, including Cisco's UCS, VMware's (8 blade) cloud OS, and Citrix/Xen/KVM virtual networking stack, not to mention the Juniper and IBM global cloud push.

Network Automation is Critical
With increased movement and growing legions of connected devices (from netbooks and multifunctional cell phones and traffic-rich gadgets there is a burgeoning need for networks to move from manual configuration to automation of menial and high risk tasks.  There are therefore a host of appliances that are likely to get grouped from the current Wild West into a single category because of their ability to automate the management of networks.  They include IP address management and dns appliance offerings, in addition to network monitoring gear. 

Infoblox (my employer) is approaching the network effects of the cloud by leveraging its expertise in core network services DNS to deliver an integrated Grid technology solution, while others are offering specialized subsets with (I suspect) the longer term intention of being bundled into broader offerings. 

As the cloud tears down silos, one trick pony solutions (including freeware) will have an uphill battle for relevancy, especially as enterprises tear down silos.  That is why I left Blue Lane during the VMware acquisition for Infoblox.  CIOs are about to discover the significance of the network and core network services to unleashing the power of cloud.  On demand It services will require unprecedented levels of automation and integrity.

The nature and extent of how the tech leaders address, security, physical infrastructure and network management barriers will impact their market valuations and growth potentials.  You can expect a fresh round of partnerships, acquisitions and startups to reignite the tech sector as the economy stabilizes and enterprises shift to making strategic new investments.

You can follow my comments in real time at www.twitter.com/archimedius or catch the conversation as it happens at www.infra20.com.

More Stories By Greg Ness

Gregory Ness is the VP of Marketing of Vidder and has over 30 years of experience in marketing technology, B2B and consumer products and services. Prior to Vidder, he was VP of Marketing at cloud migration pioneer CloudVelox. Before CloudVelox he held marketing leadership positions at Vantage Data Centers, Infoblox (BLOX), BlueLane Technologies (VMW), Redline Networks (JNPR), IntruVert (INTC) and ShoreTel (SHOR). He has a BA from Reed College and an MA from The University of Texas at Austin. He has spoken on virtualization, networking, security and cloud computing topics at numerous conferences including CiscoLive, Interop and Future in Review.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
Nicolas Fierro is CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions. He is a programmer, technologist, and operations dev who has worked with Ethereum and blockchain since 2014. His knowledge in blockchain dates to when he performed dev ops services to the Ethereum Foundation as one the privileged few developers to work with the original core team in Switzerland.
René Bostic is the Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America. Enjoying her career with IBM during the modern millennial technological era, she is an expert in cloud computing, DevOps and emerging cloud technologies such as Blockchain. Her strengths and core competencies include a proven record of accomplishments in consensus building at all levels to assess, plan, and implement enterprise and cloud computing solutions. René is a member of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and a m...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
Whenever a new technology hits the high points of hype, everyone starts talking about it like it will solve all their business problems. Blockchain is one of those technologies. According to Gartner's latest report on the hype cycle of emerging technologies, blockchain has just passed the peak of their hype cycle curve. If you read the news articles about it, one would think it has taken over the technology world. No disruptive technology is without its challenges and potential impediments t...
If a machine can invent, does this mean the end of the patent system as we know it? The patent system, both in the US and Europe, allows companies to protect their inventions and helps foster innovation. However, Artificial Intelligence (AI) could be set to disrupt the patent system as we know it. This talk will examine how AI may change the patent landscape in the years to come. Furthermore, ways in which companies can best protect their AI related inventions will be examined from both a US and...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Bill Schmarzo, Tech Chair of "Big Data | Analytics" of upcoming CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York (November 12-13, 2018, New York City) today announced the outline and schedule of the track. "The track has been designed in experience/degree order," said Schmarzo. "So, that folks who attend the entire track can leave the conference with some of the skills necessary to get their work done when they get back to their offices. It actually ties back to some work that I'm doing at the University of San...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...