A Tale of Two Companies: Measuring Clouds

Grazed from MSPMentor. Author: Michael Brown.

Measuring ROI for cloud usage is no doubt a difficult task, and when prospective clients are considering potential cloud-based MSPs, it may still be something they want to hear about. However each company is different and MSPs need to be able to modify their approaches accordingly. As this article from InformationWeek explains, there are big differences between a new, fast growing company like Airbnb and a monolithic, experienced company like GE, and how they use cloud services such as cloud-based file sharing.

You Merely Adopted the Cloud, We Were Born in It

The perception of the cloud is clearly very different to a company such as Airbnb versus a company like GE. Airbnb, a company that provides a platform where people can rent their apartments or vacation homes directly to strangers via the internet, has never even had its own data center. Six years ago the company launched via cloud services, and subsequently built all of their applications in the cloud...

Apple Opens iCloud Data Center in China

Grazed from TopTechNews. Author: Dan Heilman.

Treading lightly, Apple acknowledged that it has started to store the personal data Relevant Products/Services of some Chinese users on servers in China. Reuters initially reported that Apple’s success in China led to the first iCloud data center Relevant Products/Services to be located on mainland China. The center was built by Apple and a state-owned telecommunications company, China Telecom, the country's third-largest wireless carrier.

Apple told Reuters in a statement that China Telecom was added to its list of data center providers in order to improve its iCloud service, which lets users store and access photos and other personal files from multiple devices. Apple said storing the data closer to the iCloud users gives them quicker and more reliable access to it...

Cloud Computing: AWS innovation is what's driving adoption, not price

Grazed from TechRepublic. Author: Matt Asay.

Despite early marketing hype, public cloud computing has never been popular because it's cheap. Ultimately, the real driver of public cloud computing services -- like Amazon Web Services (AWS) -- is convenience, but undergirding that convenience is profound, relentless innovation. While AWS has competition from Microsoft and Google now, no one yet has managed its ability to drive innovation at a frenetic pace.

Not so cheap after all?

Lately, AWS has come under attack from competitors like Google and Microsoft, who are willing to offer significant price discounts, and also from startups and others who believe that they can more cost efficiently run their own infrastructure. Leading this latter pack is investor Brad Feld, who argues:...

What's The Buzz About "Cloud Computing"

Grazed from Business2Community. Author: Lou D'Adamo.

Can using the Cloud really save you money? According to the Huffington Post, Parallels, a software company that enables companies like GoDaddy and Sprint to offer cloud services to small and medium businesses, reported that the cloud services industry grew to $45 billion worldwide last year. Helping to drive that were 6 million small and medium businesses purchasing their first cloud service last year alone. And, the report projects that the market is expected to grow annually at a rate of 28 percent through 2015 to be a $95 billion industry.

A Cloud storage application that you might consider is Google Drive. Google Drive gives you the ability to securely save your important documents to the cloud. This means that your document isn’t physically stored on any one device, but rather, it’s stored on a secure internet server and is accessible from any Internet or data-enabled device...

DoD Greenlights Cloud Computing Pilots for Sensitive Military Data

Grazed from FedTechMagazine. Author: Nicole Blake Johnson.

The Defense Department is seriously considering how it can move certain classifications of sensitive data into secure cloud environments operated by private companies. DoD’s acting CIO, Terry Halvorsen, said the department will announce five pilots within the next 20 days. “I won’t give you the exact timeline, but it could be the first of September,” Halvorsen told attendees Wednesday at the Federal Forum conference in Washington, D.C.

Halvorsen’s team received approval to begin testing how DoD can migrate level 3 and level 4 military data to the cloud. These classification levels are for controlled unclassified information (CUI), which includes data that are For Official Use Only (FOUO), Law Enforcement Sensitive (LES) or DoD Unclassified Controlled Nuclear Information...

SUSE Unveils Icehouse OpenStack Private Cloud

Grazed from TalkinCloud. Author: Chris Talbot.

SUSE has launched an updated version of its private cloud solution. This latest version, dubbed SUSE Cloud 4, was designed based on OpenStack Icehouse, the latest version of the open source cloud infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platform. In addition to being based on Icehouse, SUSE Cloud 4 also supports the Ceph distributed storage system, but it also includes new VMware (VMW) capabilities and enhanced scalability, automation and availability features for easing enterprise adoption of OpenStack, the company stated.

"SUSE Cloud makes it easy and cost-effective to implement a highly available, mixed-hypervisor private cloud infrastructure. And the addition of Ceph distributed storage capabilities increases the value and flexibility of SUSE Cloud in almost any enterprise," said Michael Miller, SUSE vice president of Global Alliances and Marketing, in a prepared statement...

Read more from the source @

Harnessing the power of Google's cloud: Google BigQuery Analytics book extract

Grazed from CloudComputingNews. Author: Jordan Tigani and Siddartha Naidu.

When you run your queries via BigQuery, you put a giant cluster of machines to work for you. Although the BigQuery clusters represent only a small fraction of Google’s global fleet, each query cluster is measured in the thousands of cores. When BigQuery needs to grow, there are plenty of resources that can be harnessed to meet the demand.

If you want to, you could probably figure out the size of one of BigQuery’s compute clusters by carefully controlling the size of data being scanned in your queries. The number of processor cores involved is in the thousands, the number of disks in the hundreds of thousands. Most organizations don’t have the budget to build at that kind of scale just to run some queries over their data. The benefits of the Google cloud go beyond the amount of hardware that is used, however. A massive datacenter is useless unless you can keep it running...

Performance monitoring for virtualization vs. cloud computing

Grazed from TechTarget. Author: Brendan Gregg.

How do cloud-hosted workloads affect data center systems differently than virtualized and physical infrastructures? Are there steps that admins can take to prepare themselves for performance diagnostics and improvement once their infrastructure moves to cloud? Start by getting up to speed with different Web server and database architectures because scalability is more horizontal than vertical across new instances. You can scale further with cloud computing vs. virtualization, and more closely match your IT spend with the workload. That's great, but you now have many more distributed systems to analyze.

On a cloud infrastructure with hundreds or thousands of server instances, you can't solve performance issues until you identify the right instances to target. This requires skills in distributed system monitoring. Often the performance issue subsides naturally or from auto-scaling of the cloud infrastructure, so the administrator must identify the problem instances after the event. At the very least, enable the Linux tool sar to track historical data...

Cloud and the Internet of Things 101

Grazed from Business2Community. Author: Emily Hines.

A few weeks ago, March conducted a training session, “Cloud 101 and the Internet of Things.” As an Account Coordinator here at March, I support clients that sit squarely in the Cloud and IOT space so this was a session I wasn’t going to miss. The training was presented by my fellow colleagues, Doug and James.

We began our session with a review of the basic types of clouds: cirrus, stratus, and cumulus. Once we all confirmed that we passed the third grade, we moved on to cloud computing fundamentals and the uses of the cloud. We agreed that “the cloud” is a technology term that is thrown around, overused and misused...


Software Analytics Company New Relic Joins Cloud Security Alliance

Grazed from MarketWire. Author: PR Announcement.

Software analytics company New Relic today announced that it has joined the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), a not-for-profit organization working to establish and promote best practices and education for security assurance in the cloud computing industry with industry leading members such as Google, Amazon Web Services, and Box among many others. As a pure SaaS application performance management (APM) solution provider, New Relic is promoting industry transparency and customer visibility into the security practices. Customers can download the CSA's STAR report that documents New Relic's network and application security controls.

The CSA membership is only the latest security advancement New Relic has taken to assure the security of its network and its service for its over 200,000 users. Not only is New Relic hosted in a secure tier 3 SSAE-16 certified data center, but it has also undergone and completed a comprehensive SOC 2 Type II audit for three consecutive years...