Category Archives: White Papers

Whitepaper: Big Security For Big Data

Whitepaper: Big Security For Big Data

Whitepaper: Big Security For Big Data

We are children of the information generation. No longer tied to large mainframe computers, we now access information via applications, mobile devices, and laptops to make decisions based on real-time data. It is because information is so pervasive that businesses want to capture this data and analyze it for intelligence.

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Data explosion

The multitude of devices, users, and generated traffic all combine to create a proliferation of data that is being created with incredible volume, velocity, and variety. As a result, organizations need a way to protect, utilize, and gain real-time insight from “big data.”

This intelligence is not only valuable to businesses and consumers, but also to hackers. Robust information marketplaces have arisen for hackers to sell credit card information, account usernames, passwords, national secrets (WikiLeaks), as well as intellectual property. How does anyone keep secrets anymore? How does anyone keep secrets protected from hackers?

In the past when the network infrastructure was straightforward and perimeters used to exist, controlling access to data was much simpler. If your secrets rested within the company network, all you had to do to keep the data safe was to make sure you had a strong firewall in place. However, as data became available through the Internet, mobile devices, and the cloud having a firewall was not enough. Companies tried to solve each security problem in a piecemeal manner, tacking on more security devices like patching a hole in the wall. But, because these products did not interoperate, you could not coordinate a defense against hackers.

In order to meet the current security problems faced by organizations, a new paradigm shift needs to occur. Businesses need the ability to secure data, collect it, and aggregate into an intelligent format, so that real-time alerting and reporting can take place. The first step is to establish complete visibility so that your data and who accesses the data can be monitored. Next, you need to understand the context, so that you can focus on the valued assets, which are critical to your business. Finally, utilize the intelligence gathered so that you can harden your attack surface and stop attacks before the data is exfiltrated. So, how do we get started?

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Whitepaper: The Journey To Private Cloud

Whitepaper: The Journey To Private Cloud

The Journey to Private Cloud

Based on a recent Enterprise Management Associates® (EMA™) research study, the main reasons for adopting cloud computing, mentioned by 52%-62% of respondents, were as follows:

a) Agility: Accelerating service creation and provisioning
b) Performance and resiliency: Improving the performance and resiliency of business services
c) Resource optimization: Reducing operational and capital expense

Respondents mentioned a vast variety of enterprise applications – e-mail, CRM, VDI, custom applications, ERP, accounting, HR, telephony, and even mainframe-based application services – when asked what they were planning to host in the cloud. This response illustrates the importance that most companies place in the adoption of a cloud model. Organizations are looking for faster and more agile IT delivery models that help strengthen their positions in the marketplace. In today’s relentlessly competitive markets, the ability to rapidly build and provision well-performing and resilient business services at a reasonable cost can be seen as an essential strategic differentiator for the entire enterprise.

If this agility is not offered by the company’s internal IT organization, business stakeholders and developers look for the resources they require outside of the corporate data center. Growing corporate credit card bills for Amazon EC2 and other public cloud services are unambiguous evidence of this fact.

These public cloud solutions are not appropriate for every application from a compliance, security, and cost point of view. Moreover, without corporate IT governance, this new “shadow IT” may introduce performance and resiliency-related risks to business services.

To bring back users under corporate governance, the enterprise has to offer a service delivery model that is similar in speed and convenience to the one offered by the public cloud. Over time, most enterprises plan to embrace a hybrid cloud model – where IT becomes a broker of services, whether hosted in the private cloud or sourced through external cloud providers. As a first step, the majority of IT organizations today are focused on building their own private clouds.

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Virtualization, a Pre-condition for Cloud

Data center virtualization was heralded as a major step toward agility and efficiency of enterprise IT. However, progress was often been not as significant as expected. In many cases, overall resource utilization remained at the same approximately 20% as before these virtualization efforts. Provisioning speed often did not increase significantly either, as the traditional challenges of building new physical servers were replaced by a new set of management challenges. Physical server sprawl decreased, but the efficiency gains often were offset by virtual machine sprawl, as it suddenly became easy to spin up large numbers of virtual servers within short periods of time. Organizations were frequently overwhelmed with lifecycle management requirements for a rapidly increasing number of servers. And while virtual servers could be created quickly, this did not address the end-to-end provisioning process associated with new applications and business services. This management deficit frequently led to virtualization stall, where the IT department was unable to cope with the myriad of virtualization-related process management challenges.

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Information Collection: Business Builds Big Data

Information Collection: Business Builds Big Data

In the beginning there was the electronic computer. It was a tool for defending freedom, useful to use in breaking enemy communications codes and crunching equations for the Manhattan Project. Eventually it became the plaything of hobbyists and garage experimenters. In their garages, they eventually cobbled together machines that were useful and practical for real people.

These earliest personal computers were essentially toys until the first “killer apps” were created. These included the earliest forms of computer spreadsheet. A spreadsheet seems a simple thing, and it is for just about any computer. With this simple addition computers became as important to business as they were too scientists and hobbyists, if not more so.

Business Is Information

All business is in the business of collecting information. Information about your customer base is needed to bring them the products they want. Information about your supply chain helps to predict what products you will have to sell. Information about your competitors tells you where and how you need to innovate. It all depends on finding, storing, and interpreting information.

While business was happily expanding and filling their spreadsheets, the hobbyists and scientists were teaching their computers to talk to one another, eventually creating the Internet. Suddenly, we were no longer limited by the information contained in our own computer, we had access to information from around the world.

The Internet is a terrific place to store and share information, but the nature of business information is such that it is not always desirable to share your information with those outside your enterprise. When the Internet learned to store information, and keep it private and secure, it became the Cloud.

Welcome To The Cloud

As business moves its information into the Cloud, the traditional business applications are no longer able to handle the increased load of data. This is the text-book definition of Big Data. One of earliest super-computers outside of Government or Academia was built to handle AT&T’s billing system. Today, Wal-Mart stores handle 1 million transactions every hour, approximately 2.5 petabytes of information.

Big Data is becoming important for business of all sizes. The smallest of local businesses are no longer strictly local. Thanks to the Internet they can easily market to a world-wide client base.

Big Data and business relationships reach beyond the Internet. If the International marketplace was just for the exchange of information and money, the ‘net may be a sufficient tool, but physical goods are exchanged as well. The sprocket manufactured in your home town getting shipped and installed on a machine in Malaysia is a miracle of shipping. When it happens hundreds of thousands of times a day, it involves Big Data.

By Peter Knight

Webinar: How Cloud, Mobility and Analytics are Driving New Approaches to APM

As computing becomes more and more pervasive with the advent of social business, cloud, mobility and big data/analytics – every end-user interaction counts!  Hear Mary share relevant market research data as well and how to keep enterprise IT focused on what matters with this new complexity faced by IT operations.

Joining Mary is OpTier’s Vice President of Corporate Marketing, Linh Ho who will provide some insight into APM best practices as seen from the customers’ perspectives.

Red Hat Cloud Services And Training

Red Hat Cloud Services And Training

Red Hat Cloud Services And Training

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Red Hat Services offers a complete spectrum of cloud services solutions built to accelerate your journey to cloud computing. Our portfolio of consulting and training services provides you with the expertise to help you quickly ramp up Red Hat® CloudForms deployments while establishing the foundation for intelligent, open hybrid cloud infrastructures.

Pathway to Open Cloud

Navigate your way to a cloud environment based on open architectures and standards. This strategic consulting service assesses technical and organizational readiness and current-state architecture to design and deliver an actionable, strategic roadmap for cloud adoption.

The strategic service includes:

•  Risk assessment and mitigation for your organizational and technical readiness Development of a foundational business case, including key performance metrics
•  Demonstration and pilot projects for a prototype open hybrid cloud solution, using Red Hat CloudForms
•  Creation of a strategic roadmap/plan for cloud adoption, including cloud architecture, governance, workload migration, development, and implementation

Cloud Solution Architecture Service

Accelerate your organization’s transition to an open hybrid cloud. This engagement includes the solution definition, installation, configuration, and acclimation of CloudForms, allowing your organization to be positioned for success from day one.

The implementation service includes:

•  Define: Architectural design to meet requirements and verify core use case
•  Installation: Installation and configuration of Red Hat CloudForms for up to three (3) supported resource provider(s), creation of a prototypical application workload definition, and workload management and deployment to the selected resource provider(s) via Red Hat CloudForms
•  Acclimation: Documentation of your installation and configuration, guidance on best practices for ongoing management of your cloud solution, and incidental observations on additional performance opportunities.

These Red Hat services enable you to build a functional, enterprise-ready cloud in a reasonable timeframe so that you can quickly begin delivering the associated services and benefits to your organization.

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The Mobile Movement – Collaboration Without Compromise

The Mobile Movement – Collaboration Without Compromise

The Mobile Movement – Collaboration Without Compromise

Fueled by the combination of a new breed of mobile productivity apps, cloud services, and more traditional enterprise apps and infrastructure, today’s mobile workers can now communicate and collaborate over smartphones and tablets in ways that simply weren’t possible even a few years ago.

There are now hundreds of mobile business and productivity apps that extend, complement or even replace the functions of desktop mainstays such as Microsoft Exchange and Office—creating mobile workflows that may not fully replace the desktop experience, but certainly change it. With more collaborative and social messaging features; more convenient file access and sharing; and more ways than ever before to view, edit, annotate and exchange documents; these new collaborative apps are addressing the real needs of today’s highly mobile workforce. IT can either fight this wave or find a way to align user expectations and needs with their security, compliance and support requirements. Finally, IT can say “Yes!” and embrace the shift towards true, real-time collaboration.

Read this whitepaper to learn how to enable mobile collaboration while maintaining data security and strict end user privacy – whether on BYOD or a mix of corporate- and employee-owned devices.

The Desktop

The move towards true, real-time collaboration involves an understanding of changes in user behavior and expectations. As pragmatic individuals, mobile workers are looking for the fastest and most seamless way to manage their ever-increasing workloads and stay productive at all times. While they’ve been trained to accept their desktop experience, most workers find it cluttered, confusing, and inefficient—too many windows; too many applications that don’t work well together; and too many keystrokes, clicks, drags, and drops to perform even the most basic tasks. Often, their intention is simple and specific. They seek to complete a task quickly and completely. Their imperative is productivity, and they’re realizing that today’s mobile apps and devices often just “work better.” It’s not at all unusual to see a user sitting at his or her desk, and preferring to access email from a touch-based iPhone, iPad, or Android device even as a laptop or desktop system sits mere inches away.

Communicating at the App Level – Continue Reading…

 

Cloud Whitepaper: Virtual Network Architecture

Cloud Whitepaper: Virtual Network Architecture

Cloud Whitepaper: Virtual Network Architecture

Looking back at how the IT landscape has evolved over the past 20 years, it is amazing to see the striking parallel between the evolution of technology and the evolution of business. In the Client /Server era, it was normal for IT initiatives to take months or even years on end. This was reflective of the pace of business at that time; it seems the whole world ran at a slower pace as purchasing behavior was still dictated by the physical world and global competitors were separated by vast distances. As industry transitioned into the Internet era, the world became increasingly flat, new business models emerged and new competitors from around the globe became as close as a mouse click.

The amazing technological progress that has led industry through the Internet and into the Cloud era was made possible in large part by the advancement of open innovation in the server and software industries. The open x86 architecture, powered by Moore’s law, has unleashed unparalleled innovation and value over multiple generations of microprocessor technology. Similarly, the open x86 software industry has grown to provide revolutionary advancement in every facet of business and industry. Server virtualization has further unleashed value by enabling on-demand resource availability, asset efficiency and business continuity.

In contrast, the Networking industry has yet to benefit from such open innovation initiatives. Unlike the open x86 market, there is no modern software development ecosystem for the leading network operating system; there are no modern standards for intelligent programmable interfaces to enable automation; virtualization is primitive, static, and fractured.

This whitepaper outlines the principal elements of VNA and maps out its principal applications for traditional, virtual and cloud IT environments.Dell‖s Virtual Network Architecture (VNA) framework is a direct response to this growing need for networking solutions to be brought into the modern age. VNA is designed to be both innovative and practical, based around a set of open, flexible architectures that provides the benefit of the latest innovations in networking. VNA is also designed to integrate tightly with innovative new network virtualization solutions such as the Hyper-V Network virtualization framework jointly developed by Microsoft and Dell.

Webinar: Integration Made Easy In The Cloud

Webinar: Integration Made Easy In The Cloud

Using SAP as an ERP: Dell Boomi Reaches Out to Draw Integration Seekers Inside the Boomi Atom Technology

Struggling with assimilating SAP with other systems and cloud based applications? Dell Boomi’s fresh approach utilizing their Boomi Atom and Boomi molecule is looking to serve up enterprise grade functionality formerly reserved for deep pockets.

You’re invited to sit with Michael Hubbs the Director of IT at Emtech, Steve Tseng the Enterprise Architect at Dell Boomi, and Wes Manning the Sales Engineer at Dell Boomi for a live event. Entitled, “SAP and Salesforce.com: Integration made easy in the cloud” the 60-minute conference is scheduled to explain Salesforce.com’s example of successfully integrating SAP within the cloud resulting in a real game changer for this organization.

Too many companies fail to optimize their business enterprise processes fully due to the expense, complexity, and struggles employing a new approach successfully. Dell Boomi seeks to change that dynamic through their cloud middle ware applications. The company’s technology acts as a conduit integrating any grouping of both cloud-to-cloud configurations and premise to cloud combinations.

By accepting their invitation to learn how the Boomi Atom and the Boomi Molecule can handle parallel processing alongside high volumes of transactions and records, you will investigate the following topics:

  • SAP integration fundamentals, including IDocs, BAPIs and RFCs
  • Live demonstration of a Dell Boomi SAP-to-Salesforce.com integration
  • Emtec, Inc’s immediate ROI and improved quote-to-cash process

If one of your goals is the promotion of seamless, safe, and secure environments that effortlessly promote various integrations with shortened time-to-value, this may be exactly what you are looking for.

Reserve your spot today in order to optimize fully for tomorrow.

 

Cloud Whitepaper: Choosing A Cloud Hosting Provider With Confidence

Cloud Whitepaper: Choosing A Cloud Hosting Provider With Confidence

Choosing A Cloud Hosting Provider with Confidence

Introduction

Cloud computing is rapidly transforming the IT landscape, and the conversation around adopting cloud technology has progressed from “if” to “when .” Enterprises are showing strong interest in outsourced (“public”) cloud offerings that can help them reduce costs and increase business agility.  These cloud services offer enormous economic benefits but they also pose significant potential risks for enterprises that must safeguard corporate information assets while complying with a myriad of industry and government regulations.

Many cloud service providers can deliver the security that enterprises need and SSL (secure sockets layer) certificates are part of the solution. More specifically, SSL is the solution for securing data when it is in motion.  The goal of this white paper is to help enterprises make pragmatic decisions about where and when to use cloud solutions by outlining specific issues that enterprises should raise with hosting providers before selecting a vendor, and by highlighting the ways in which SSL from a trusted Certificate Authority (CA) can help enterprises conduct business in the cloud with confidence.

Cloud Computing:

For the enterprise, cloud services offer lower IT capital expenditures and operating costs, on-demand capacity with self-service provisioning, and pay-per-use pricing models for greater flexibility and agility.  The service provider, in turn, achieves exponentially greater economies of scale by providing a standardized set of computing resources to a large base of customers.  Many enterprise hosting providers are already well positioned in the market and have the core competencies (people, processes, technology) to deliver the promise of cloud computing to the enterprise.

Despite the clear economic benefits of using cloud services, concerns about security, compliance and data privacy have slowed enterprise adoption.  An IDC survey of IT executives reveals that security is the #1 challenge facing IT cloud  services. Gartner Research has identified seven specific areas of security risk  associated with enterprise cloud computing, and recommends that organizations address several key issues when selecting a cloud hosting provider:

• Access privileges – Cloud service providers should be able to demonstrate they enforce adequate hiring, oversight and access controls to enforce administrative delegation.

• Regulatory compliance – Enterprises are accountable for their own data even when it’s in a public cloud, and should ensure their providers are ready and willing to undergo audits.

• Data provenance – When selecting a provider, ask where their datacenters are located and if they can commit to specific privacy requirements.

• Data segregation – Most public clouds are shared environments, and it is critical to make sure hosting providers can guarantee complete data segregation for secure multi-tenancy.

• Data recovery – Enterprises must make sure their hosting provider has the ability to do a complete restoration in the event of a disaster.

• Monitoring and reporting – Monitoring and logging public cloud activity is hard to do, so enterprises should ask for proof that their hosting providers can support investigations.

• Business continuity – Businesses come and go, and enterprises should ask hard questions about the portability of their data to avoid lock-in or potential loss if  the business fails.

Read Full Report

 

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