|By John Busch||
|June 9, 2009 12:45 PM EDT||
With the explosive growth of Web-based businesses and applications, datacenter workloads have increased exponentially. IT managers are finding it difficult to meet the accelerating demands for performance, capacity, scalability and reliability, while at the same time meeting budgets, maintaining service-level agreements and driving green initiatives.
New component and middleware technologies - including multi-core processors, low-latency interconnect, flash memory, and highly optimized data access and caching technologies - hold serious promise for accomplishing these goals. But without optimal integration and implementation, these technologies have failed to deliver the benefits that datacenter managers and the business demand. Because Web 2.0 and cloud computing enterprises must focus on their core business, higher-level building blocks are needed that can exploit these advanced technologies to fundamentally solve these costly challenges.
Datacenter Trends and Challenges
With the explosive growth of Web 2.0, software-as-a-service (SaaS), cloud computing and other emerging Web-based applications, datacenter workloads have increased exponentially. The business opportunities that are created from the deployment of these new applications are substantial, but the demands they place on the datacenter are daunting. Challenges include:
- Unprecedented data growth. Recent studies indicate that the amount of data managed by today's datacenters will quadruple every 18 months. To complicate matters, online users are getting much more sophisticated, and response time expectations are at an all time high. But with the large increases in data volume, user interaction times are actually increasing for many datacenters.
- Severe capacity constraints. Datacenter managers are struggling to manage huge increases in rack, power and network utilization. They are constrained by limited datacenter power and space and are seeking cost-effective ways to expand capacity without increasing the datacenter footprint.
- Increasing data complexity. Organizations have too much data to process in a time-sensitive and consistent manner. Information management requires extensive data partitioning and application-level mapping, caching, replication/recovery and load balancing. Existing data management tools are complex and existing commodity, non-application-specific hardware is difficult to use and manage.
- Lack of scalability. Current datacenter environments lack the ability to scale effectively to manage peak demand. Even in multi-core server environments, many datacenters have already scaled to the point they are memory and disk bound.
- Underutilized resources. Estimates of current datacenter equipment utilization rates run between five and 30 percent. Kilowatt-hours are very expensive and inefficient. Underutilized hardware translates into wasted capex and opex, as well as increased power consumption.
- Severe budget constraints. Budgets are tighter than ever. Only solutions that are able to provide quick return on investment (ROI) are now being approved. Traditional approaches to datacenter expansion are no longer viable.
- Corporate mandates to go green. According to the 2007 EPA Report to Congress on Server and Datacenter Energy Efficiency, the energy consumption of servers and datacenters has doubled in the past five years and is expected to almost double again in the next five years to more than 100 billion kWh, costing about $7.4 billion annually. Datacenter managers are working hard to save energy, reduce datacenter space requirements and protect the environment.
Limitations of Today's Technology
The ability to effectively scale the database and caching tiers is critical for the success of any growing Web-enabled business. Unfortunately, ordinary server and middleware infrastructure is loosely integrated and minimally optimized. Existing datacenter solutions aren't adequately addressing the performance, capacity, scaling, reliability and power challenges of supporting new Web applications effectively.
Several new technologies have the potential to solve these challenges:
- Multi-core processors offer the promise of improved application performance and increased energy efficiency, but harnessing that potential effectively requires very high parallelism and synchronizing the processors, with a resultant higher degree of complexity.
- Enterprise-class flash memory has several advantages over traditional hard disk drives (HDDs), including 100 times faster access time, increased reliability due to no moving parts, and significantly reduced power. Space and power savings, for the same server workload, translate into a tangible reduction in total cost of ownership (TCO).
- Low-latency interconnect technologies provide the ability to send a message in a millionth of a second - more than an order of magnitude improvement over existing solutions.
- Optimized data access and caching applications can speed access to data. But these applications need to be deeply integrated with the operating environment and hardware to fully utilize the benefits of multi-core processor, flash memory and low-latency interconnect technologies.
The unfortunate reality is that each customer's IT team must become its own integration house, developing software in an attempt to optimize these advanced technologies - a highly complex and error-prone process that can take years to implement. This approach not only diverts valuable IT resources from the enterprise's core business, it results in unmanageable application and administrative complexity, low-resource utilization and high TCO.
Challenges of Utilizing New Technologies
The new generation of commodity multi-core processors, flash memory and low-latency interconnects offer tremendous potential in Web 2.0 and cloud computing datacenters, but in reality, due to the extensive work to implement, the benefits are limited. The effort required to utilize these new technologies to solve today's severe performance, power, space and TCO challenges is significant. IT teams need to develop highly parallel middleware applications, a high-performance operating system, and develop and optimize numerous, specialized configurations.
Adapting or inventing new deployment architectures to take advantage of the new technologies is a major undertaking, with large development and support costs that are not the core value of the businesses. Fortunately new, higher-level building blocks are now being introduced that address these challenges.
New technology integrates advances in flash memory, multi-core processors, low-latency interconnect, and optimized data access and caching technologies into fully integrated, optimized, multi-node appliances for faster data access. In the first half of 2009, several vendors introduced all-new, fully integrated appliances that leverage some or all of these technology advances.
By using these fully optimized data access appliances, enterprises can leverage higher-level building blocks that eliminate the need for complex integration projects. These appliances enable IT to meet corporate goals of increasing capacity, scalability and reliability, while at the same time slashing costs and dramatically curtailing energy consumption across the datacenter. The net result is not just more efficient datacenter operations, but the creation of new revenue-producing business opportunities based on rapid access to terabyte-scale data.
The BPM world is going through some evolution or changes where traditional business process management solutions really have nowhere to go in terms of development of the road map. In this demo at 15th Cloud Expo, Kyle Hansen, Director of Professional Services at AgilePoint, shows AgilePoint’s unique approach to dealing with this market circumstance by developing a rapid application composition or development framework.
Dec. 20, 2014 03:00 AM EST Reads: 925
“In the past year we've seen a lot of stabilization of WebRTC. You can now use it in production with a far greater degree of certainty. A lot of the real developments in the past year have been in things like the data channel, which will enable a whole new type of application," explained Peter Dunkley, Technical Director at Acision, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 19, 2014 06:00 PM EST Reads: 1,219
The major cloud platforms defy a simple, side-by-side analysis. Each of the major IaaS public-cloud platforms offers their own unique strengths and functionality. Options for on-site private cloud are diverse as well, and must be designed and deployed while taking existing legacy architecture and infrastructure into account. Then the reality is that most enterprises are embarking on a hybrid cloud strategy and programs. In this Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo (http://www.CloudComputingExpo.com), moderated by Ashar Baig, Research Director, Cloud, at Gigaom Research, Nate Gordon, Director of T...
Dec. 19, 2014 11:30 AM EST Reads: 2,319
"BSQUARE is in the business of selling software solutions for smart connected devices. It's obvious that IoT has moved from being a technology to being a fundamental part of business, and in the last 18 months people have said let's figure out how to do it and let's put some focus on it, " explained Dave Wagstaff, VP & Chief Architect, at BSQUARE Corporation, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4-6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 19, 2014 11:00 AM EST Reads: 1,878
SYS-CON Events announced today that Windstream, a leading provider of advanced network and cloud communications, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9–11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Windstream (Nasdaq: WIN), a FORTUNE 500 and S&P 500 company, is a leading provider of advanced network communications, including cloud computing and managed services, to businesses nationwide. The company also offers broadband, phone and digital TV services to consumers primarily in rural areas.
Dec. 19, 2014 07:00 AM EST Reads: 2,188
The Internet of Things is not new. Historically, smart businesses have used its basic concept of leveraging data to drive better decision making and have capitalized on those insights to realize additional revenue opportunities. So, what has changed to make the Internet of Things one of the hottest topics in tech? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Gray, Director, Embedded and Internet of Things, discussed the underlying factors that are driving the economics of intelligent systems. Discover how hardware commoditization, the ubiquitous nature of connectivity, and the emergence of Big Data a...
Dec. 19, 2014 06:30 AM EST Reads: 2,187
ARMONK, N.Y., Nov. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that it is bringing a greater level of control, security and flexibility to cloud-based application development and delivery with a single-tenant version of Bluemix, IBM's platform-as-a-service. The new platform enables developers to build ap...
Dec. 19, 2014 05:00 AM EST Reads: 2,004
SYS-CON Events announced today that IDenticard will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. IDenticard™ is the security division of Brady Corp (NYSE: BRC), a $1.5 billion manufacturer of identification products. We have small-company values with the strength and stability of a major corporation. IDenticard offers local sales, support and service to our customers across the United States and Canada. Our partner network encompasses some 300 of the world's leading systems integrators and security s...
Dec. 19, 2014 04:00 AM EST Reads: 2,006
DevOps Summit 2015 New York, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that it is now accepting Keynote Proposals. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.
Dec. 18, 2014 09:45 PM EST Reads: 1,049
"People are a lot more knowledgeable about APIs now. There are two types of people who work with APIs - IT people who want to use APIs for something internal and the product managers who want to do something outside APIs for people to connect to them," explained Roberto Medrano, Executive Vice President at SOA Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 18, 2014 09:00 AM EST Reads: 1,313
Nigeria has the largest economy in Africa, at more than US$500 billion, and ranks 23rd in the world. A recent re-evaluation of Nigeria's true economic size doubled the previous estimate, and brought it well ahead of South Africa, which is a member (unlike Nigeria) of the G20 club for political as well as economic reasons. Nigeria's economy can be said to be quite diverse from one point of view, but heavily dependent on oil and gas at the same time. Oil and natural gas account for about 15% of Nigera's overall economy, but traditionally represent more than 90% of the country's exports and as...
Dec. 18, 2014 06:00 AM EST Reads: 843
The Internet of Things is a misnomer. That implies that everything is on the Internet, and that simply should not be - especially for things that are blurring the line between medical devices that stimulate like a pacemaker and quantified self-sensors like a pedometer or pulse tracker. The mesh of things that we manage must be segmented into zones of trust for sensing data, transmitting data, receiving command and control administrative changes, and peer-to-peer mesh messaging. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ryan Bagnulo, Solution Architect / Software Engineer at SOA Software, focused on desi...
Dec. 17, 2014 11:15 PM EST Reads: 1,343
"At our booth we are showing how to provide trust in the Internet of Things. Trust is where everything starts to become secure and trustworthy. Now with the scaling of the Internet of Things it becomes an interesting question – I've heard numbers from 200 billion devices next year up to a trillion in the next 10 to 15 years," explained Johannes Lintzen, Vice President of Sales at Utimaco, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 17, 2014 11:00 PM EST Reads: 1,398
"For over 25 years we have been working with a lot of enterprise customers and we have seen how companies create applications. And now that we have moved to cloud computing, mobile, social and the Internet of Things, we see that the market needs a new way of creating applications," stated Jesse Shiah, CEO, President and Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 15th Cloud Expo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Dec. 17, 2014 08:00 PM EST Reads: 1,378
SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built to optimize Microsoft workloads, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Gridstore™ is the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built for Microsoft workloads and designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Gridstore’s hyper-converged infrastructure is the industry’s first all flash version of HyperConverged Appliances that include both compute and storag...
Dec. 17, 2014 06:30 PM EST Reads: 1,283
Today’s enterprise is being driven by disruptive competitive and human capital requirements to provide enterprise application access through not only desktops, but also mobile devices. To retrofit existing programs across all these devices using traditional programming methods is very costly and time consuming – often prohibitively so. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO, President, and Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., discussed how you can create applications that run on all mobile devices as well as laptops and desktops using a visual drag-and-drop application – and eForms-buildi...
Dec. 17, 2014 11:45 AM EST Reads: 1,506
We certainly live in interesting technological times. And no more interesting than the current competing IoT standards for connectivity. Various standards bodies, approaches, and ecosystems are vying for mindshare and positioning for a competitive edge. It is clear that when the dust settles, we will have new protocols, evolved protocols, that will change the way we interact with devices and infrastructure. We will also have evolved web protocols, like HTTP/2, that will be changing the very core of our infrastructures. At the same time, we have old approaches made new again like micro-services...
Dec. 16, 2014 11:45 PM EST Reads: 1,338
Code Halos - aka "digital fingerprints" - are the key organizing principle to understand a) how dumb things become smart and b) how to monetize this dynamic. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Robert Brown, AVP, Center for the Future of Work at Cognizant Technology Solutions, outlined research, analysis and recommendations from his recently published book on this phenomena on the way leading edge organizations like GE and Disney are unlocking the Internet of Things opportunity and what steps your organization should be taking to position itself for the next platform of digital competition.
Dec. 15, 2014 11:45 PM EST Reads: 1,701
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
Dec. 15, 2014 10:30 AM EST Reads: 6,886
As the Internet of Things unfolds, mobile and wearable devices are blurring the line between physical and digital, integrating ever more closely with our interests, our routines, our daily lives. Contextual computing and smart, sensor-equipped spaces bring the potential to walk through a world that recognizes us and responds accordingly. We become continuous transmitters and receivers of data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Andrew Bolwell, Director of Innovation for HP's Printing and Personal Systems Group, discussed how key attributes of mobile technology – touch input, sensors, social, and ...
Dec. 15, 2014 10:00 AM EST Reads: 1,966