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Cloud computing changes the way companies consume IT resources. It shifts the burden of purchasing and maintaining IT infrastructure to specialized IT providers and allows the users to pay only for the resources they need, when they need them. In this new paradigm, cloud security is a top concern.  Companies want to reap the benefits of cloud computing, but are often hesitant because of concerns about security and compliance. In the 21CFR11 regulation, the FDA focused on requirements for ensuring electronic record integrity, accuracy, and availability for agency review throughout the retention period.  The regulation emphasizes record protection from unauthorized access and system validation. Other international agencies have similar regulations. This article captures key points from an interview with Gilad Parann-Nissany, a cloud security pioneer. He addressed some... (more)

Three Top Industry Thought Leaders To Keynote at SYS-CON's Cloud Computing Expo

What, aside from a professional passion for the Enterprise IT possibilities of cloud computing, do IBM's Cloud CTO Dr Kristof Kloeckner, Amazon's VP & CTO Dr Werner Vogels and Sun's Cloud SVP David Douglas have in common? The answer is that all three are giving a major keynote address at SYS-CON' 2nd International Cloud Computing Conference & Expo being held next month in New York City (March 30-April). IBM, Sun and Amazon headline a technical program of the very highest excellence, with top industry speakers from the industry's leading companies such as Microsoft, HP, Yahoo!, Salesforce, Intel, 3tera, Trend Micro, Cisco, Keynote Systems, VIRTERA, AppSense, ParaScale, ExactTarget, Corporate Technologies, RightScale, Cordys, 3Leaf Systems, Egenera, Elastra, CohesiveFT, Kadient, eyeOS, Zeus, Dataline, Cloudscale, Blue Mountain Labs, Cumulux, Unisys, Intuit, Aria Syste... (more)

A Berkeley View of Cloud Computing: New Report

Founded through the generous support of Google, Microsoft and Sun, UC Berkeley's RAD Lab has released "A Berkeley View of Cloud Computing" - a technical report arguing that the construction and operation of extremely large-scale, commodity-computer data centers at low-cost locations was the key necessary enabler of Cloud Computing, and outlining ten obstacles including Data Confidentiality and Auditability, Bugs in Large-Scale Distributed Systems, and what the report calls Reputation Fate Sharing. "The long dreamed vision of computing as a utility is finally emerging," the report nonetheless concludes. Among the remarks in the Executive Summary is the observation that' "companies with large batch-oriented tasks can get results as quickly as their programs can scale, since using 1000 servers for one hour costs no more than using one server for 1000 hours." Other forthr... (more)

A Brief History of Cloud Computing

Someone asked me to give him an overview of Cloud Computing in “a one pager”. I think I failed, but I tried  Cloud Computing is the most important trend in the IT Industry. Even the biggest critics seem to agree that – in spite of some over-zealous marketeers – Cloud Computing is one of the most important paradigm shifts of the past decades. But what is it all about? Where did it come from? And what's to be expected? There are probably as many definitions of Cloud Computing as there are self-acclaimed Cloud Specialist. Most of those definitions include pay-per-use, instant availability,  scalability, hardware abstraction, self-provisioning, virtualization and internet. A short but safe summary would be “Cloud Computing is a new way of delivering IT services: end users can deploy the services they need when they need them. Many of those services are available over ... (more)

Nick Carr's Cloud-Network Disconnect

Virtualization and cloud computing are promising to change the way in which IT services are delivered and, in effect, transform computing as we know it today.  I think the promises are likely to come true, if and only if critical technology issues are addressed. Nicholas Carr told a recent audience at IDC Directions that "Cloud computing has become the center of investment and innovation."   While he is not a technologist, his sometimes shocking insight into the transformation of IT have been prescient, even if he doesn't sweat the details of how complex IT infrastructures can morph into the equivalent of today's public utilities. To his credit Carr has predicted the rise of the cloud computing press release, multiple cloud conferences and panels and even the SaaS repositioning exercise.  He also foresaw the rise in Amazon and Google cloud announcements, perhaps year... (more)

Why Microsoft Should Finally Buy Citrix

DISCLAIMER: This is long and the opinions are mine. I’ve written a good bit here about the various ways Microsoft and Citrix overlap in the hypervisor space, ranging from topics like shared code base through competition for the desktop space. To me, these two players have always been the underdogs battling for the right to go head-to-head against VMware in the main enterprise (and now cloud) virtual data center event. I’ve long said here that I think Microsoft is in the best position to make that move, but to be honest, Citrix currently has better technology. In other words, Microsoft has a better strategic play, Citrix a better tactical play. The announcements that came of out Synergy last week prove that. Citrix knows what it’s doing and they know how to build virtualization products to compete with VMware. As has been asked many times before, here and elsewhere:... (more)

Security and the Cloud

I was talking with Avanade’s Senior Director for Enterprise Security, Ace Swerling, earlier today. The conversation touched on a wide range of security and identity management issues that I’ll probably return to, but one of Ace’s comments brought my attention back to an issue that has been nagging at me for a while. As I’m sure we all know, security concerns often figure highly in discussions about moving Enterprise applications and data to the Cloud. Indeed, I spoke with other Avanade executives earlier this year to report on a survey they had commissioned that suggested just how significant these concerns can be for potential customers. In today’s conversation, Ace appeared to agree (as do I) with the frequent assertion that Cloud providers’ own systems will tend to be more secure than those that the majority of potential customers have in-house today. These ser... (more)

Microsoft is Having Trouble Moving to Cloud Computing: Google CEO

According to a Dow Jones Newswire report, Google CEO Eric Schmidt is bullish about perhaps using M&A to grow Google's cloud computing business - in contrast Schmidt noted that Microsoft was in his view "having trouble moving to cloud computing." According to the report, Schmidt (pictured) expects the move globally from the personal computer era to the age of cloud computing to take the next 10-15 years. Google recently acquired On2 Technologies, and of course famously has in the past bought up giants like DoubleClick and YouTube. It has even been speculated that Eric Schmidt may have coined the term "cloud computing" though opinions differ. ... (more)

Azure on Ulitzer - Microsoft’s Cloud Builder Floats to Cisco: Report

Azure Cloud OS Journal Debra Chrapaty, Microsoft's corporate VP of Global Foundation Services, the person responsible for the strategy and infrastructure platform under Microsoft Live, Cloud and Online Services worldwide including its physical infrastructure, security, operational management, global delivery and environmental considerations, has bolted to Cisco, according to the Dow Jones blog All Things Digital. Her ex-Microsoft organization supports over 200 online services and web portals. Her new job will be running Cisco's cloud and SaaS collaboration software group whose former boss, Doug Donnerline, went to Salesforce.com as executive VP of sales for the Americas. ... (more)

Ecosystem For Cloud Computing Adoption

Ecosystem at Cloud Expo TM Forum announced the formation of an ecosystem of major industry players in the emerging cloud services sector. The centerpiece of this effort is the creation of the Enterprise Cloud Buyers Council (ECBC) whose goal is to understand the needs of the largest global cloud buyers and ensure any impediments to the uptake of cloud technology are removed. Together with key service and technology suppliers, the ecosystem will initiate a range of programs designed to remove barriers to the growth of commercial cloud services. Among the enterprise buyers joining this effort are Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Deutsche Bank. Click Here for Instant Virtualization! XenServer. Enterprise-class. Cloud-proven. Free. Join the rapidly growing community of IT professionals who choose Citrix XenServer for their virtualization platform. "Cloud computing has ... (more)

Virtustream Approved as G-Cloud Supplier

Virtustream on Monday announced that it has been approved as a U.K. Government G-Cloud supplier. G-Cloud approval enables Virtustream to offer government-class cloud and data center services to the U.K. public sector, providing government based organizations with secure, reliable and highly cost effective cloud solutions. Virtustream offers G-cloud approved infrastructure-as-a-service (IAAS) and specialist cloud services (managed applications and cloud services) to U.K. government organizations. Virtustream joins the G-Cloud supplier community, a marketplace of cloud services approved for use by U.K.-based government organizations. Public sector organizations worldwide are demanding cloud services to take advantage of the significant cost and operational efficiencies possible with cloud computing. However, government organizations are also held to very rigorous da... (more)