Avoiding cloud vendor lock-in: It’s all in the planning

The cloud computing world is becoming increasingly dominated by a small number of IT giants aiming to be your one-stop services shop. From infrastructure to software, one vendor could hypothetically provide an organisation’s entire IT system. Naturally, this is appealing to users that want to simplify their estate and partner with a well-established and reliable cloud host – but ask yourself, do you really want all your eggs in one basket?

With risks like hacking and large-scale...

By Jon Lucas, 03 July 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Data Management, Infrastructure, SLA, Vendors.

How to leverage cloud architectures for high availability

Cloud architectures are used broadly nowadays; the cloud is a plethora of amazing alternatives in terms of services and solutions. However, with great power comes great responsibility, and the cloud presents itself as a place where failure can and eventually will occur. Thus, consequently, it will spread upon the entire architecture fast, possibly causing massive outages that can leave a business on its knees.

Okay, that’s not an overly optimistic scenario – more likely the opposite – but...

By Nazareno Feito, 26 June 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Architecture, Disaster Recovery, Infrastructure, SLA.

Back to black: How to ensure a data centre’s critical infrastructure works when needed

For cloud providers and their many customers a robust and continuously available power supply is amongst the most important reasons for placing IT equipment in a data centre. It’s puzzling therefore why so many data centres fail repeatedly in measuring up to such a mission critical requirement.  

Only last month, for example, cloud service providers and communications companies were hit by yet another protracted power outage affecting a data centre in London. It took time for engineers from the...

By Simon Bearne, 05 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Data Centres, Infrastructure, SLA.

Companies moving to the cloud without assessing outage possibilities, research argues

Organisations are moving to the cloud without evaluating the impact of a cloud outage, according to the latest study from data management provider Veritas.

The report, titled The Truth in Cloud and put together alongside Vanson Bourne, found that an ‘alarming majority’ of firms shift full responsibility for data protection, compliance and uptime on cloud service providers.

Three in five (59%) of the 1,200 global business and IT decision makers polled said dealing with cloud service interruptions...

By James Bourne, 16 March 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Data Loss, Data Management, Infrastructure, SLA.

Cloud outages could cost US businesses $15 billion, says Lloyd’s of London

Here’s an interesting statistic to illustrate how much influence the major cloud providers have: according to Lloyd’s of London, US businesses could lose $15 billion if a leading vendor experienced downtime of at least three days.

According to the insurer, working in partnership with risk modelling firm AIR Worldwide in its ‘Cloud Down’ report, an ‘extreme cyber incident’ which took a top cloud provider offline for three to six days would also result in insured losses of...

By James Bourne, 24 January 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Disaster Recovery, Infrastructure, Regulation, SLA.

As cloud infrastructure becomes more complex, security struggles with it

As more organisations get deeper into their cloud initiatives, their infrastructures become more complex – yet according to new research from WinMagic, security and compliance is struggling to keep up.

The study, conducted by Viga, polled more than 1,000 IT decision makers and found that while an overwhelming 98% of respondents say they use the cloud in some capacity – with on average half of a company’s infrastructure being cloud-based – security is lacking in comparison. Only one in...

By James Bourne, 11 January 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Infrastructure, Research, Security, SLA.

Stronger cloud security and guaranteed uptimes? Yes we’ll pay more, say organisations

Three quarters of organisations would be willing to pay a premium to enhance their cloud services, according to the latest note from 451 Research.

In the latest from its Voice of the Enterprise series – this time around organisational dynamics in hosting and cloud managed services – the research firm found that companies were most likely to pay more for security guarantees than anything else.

Just under half (48.7%) of those polled said they would pay to enhance their security, ahead of guaranteed...

By James Bourne, 26 September 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Research, Security, SLA, Vendors.

Oracle introduces new cloud pricing models with further glance at beating AWS

Oracle OpenWorld may still be a couple of weeks away, but Larry Ellison gave a glimpse of what to expect in San Francisco with the announcement of new licensing and pricing structures – promising to beat Amazon by at least 50% on cost.

Ellison, Oracle’s CTO, took to the stage to not only discuss the new structures, but reaffirm the company’s strategy, as well as its next generation, fully autonomous database, to be fully unveiled at OpenWorld.

One of the new models is ‘universal...

By James Bourne, 20 September 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Amazon, Data & Analytics, Economy, Infrastructure, Platform, SLA.

Five steps to gain data centre power chain management and risk assessment

It is a simple fact that data centre power outages will cause major business disruption in our connected and web delivered world. It’s very likely that a severe data centre power outage can cause a major loss of customers and damage the brand – as well as the stock price.

Everyone must face these facts, because there is no silver lining to a power loss incident. The potential ramifications might be irreversible and include that loss of trust, market share and reputation that are hard to quantify...

By Robert Neave, 21 August 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Data Centres, Disaster Recovery, Infrastructure, SLA.

Cisco admits to losing Meraki customer data in ‘erroneous policy change’

Cisco says it is ‘deeply regretful’ after admitting losing Meraki customer data from what it described as an erroneous policy change.

The data affected from Cisco Meraki, which offers cloud-controlled Wi-Fi, routing and security, included custom logos, floor plans, audio such as hold music and voicemail greetings, as well as custom enterprise applications. The company’s tagline reads: “Secure and scalable, Cisco Meraki enterprise networks simply work.”

“On August 3rd 2017,...

By James Bourne, 07 August 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Data Management, Disaster Recovery, SLA.

How companies can boost their website in China’s clouded market

Company name translated into Chinese? Tick. Chinese social media accounts up and running? Tick. A Chinese-language website? Tick.

The IT team managing your Chinese website clicks ‘deploy’, and you’re now on the way to conquering the lucrative Chinese market.

The euphoria of global expansion endures for a few days, but then the teething problems start stacking up. Website availability is patchy. No one is coming to your site — except for spammers and existing customers who complain...

By Alibaba Cloud, 04 August 2017, 1 comment. Categories: Adoption, Migration, Scalability, SLA.

Some things should not go public: The risks of a single-cloud strategy

Both Amazon and Microsoft cloud users experienced majorly disrupted services earlier this year due to unforeseen outages on both the AWS and Azure platforms. Customers faced disrupted services with no access to vital apps or data and some companies were left without access to crucial SaaS-based technologies that inhibited business operations across the globe. This outage was met with the swift realisation that the public cloud may not always be the most appropriate solution for every workload. Keeping all...

By Chuck Dubuque, 23 June 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Infrastructure, Private, Public, SLA.

Why companies are shifting to ‘IT as a service’ – and what you need to do about it

‘IT as a service’ (ITaaS) is on the rise as companies realise the benefits of contracting an IT service provider for all their business technology needs. While ITaaS is not a new concept, it has become a go-to operational model for medium-to-large sized companies that need 24/7 monitoring, managing, and sustaining of company technology.

Moving to ITaaS is an operational shift, where IT is run as a business and therefore can be optimised according to business needs. Companies that run hybrid IT environments,...

By Kirk Panitz, 07 June 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Adoption, Hybrid, Private, Public, SLA.

Four nines and failure rates: Will the cloud ever cut it for transactional banking?

Banks looking to take their cloud plans to the next level are likely to have returned to the drawing board following the latest Amazon Web Services outage, which disrupted the online activities of major organizations from Apple to the US Securities and Exchange Commission. One estimate suggests US financial services companies alone lost $160 million – in just four hours. It’s been a timely reminder that any downtime is too much in an always-on digital economy, certainly for financial services.

The...

By David Richards, 26 April 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Industry, Infrastructure, SLA.

How the IoT and mobility has made cloud more than a ‘nice to have’

In its Worldwide Cloud IT Infrastructure Hardware Spending Forecast, 2016–2020, IDC forecast that the spending on cloud IT infrastructure would grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.6 percent and reach $54.6 billion by 2019. As the move to the cloud becomes inexorable for organisations, they are faced with the important task of properly managing this significant architectural change.

Perhaps the most critical facet of digital transformation...

By Carl Levine, 24 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Architecture, Infrastructure, Mobility, SaaS , SLA, Software.

Amazon, Apple and Microsoft vow to improve cloud conditions after CMA review

(c)iStock.com/maxkabakov

Amazon, Apple and Microsoft have vowed to improve their terms and conditions of cloud storage contracts after a review from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), the body has announced.

The giants join BT, Dixons Carphone, Dropbox, Google, JustCloud, Livedrive and Mozy in moving forward with improved conditions. Common areas where Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft will make changes include giving ‘adequate notice’ to customers before significant changes are made to the...

By James Bourne, 20 February 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Compliance, SLA, Software, Storage.

How to keep downtime to a minimum with the right cloud computing support

(c)iStock.com/fazon1

The cloud has transformed the way we do business today, improving infrastructure scalability and cost models for everything from software to data storage to disaster recovery. As with any IT solution, however, cloud computing isn’t without its risks.

In 2012, the International Working Group on Cloud Computing Resiliency (IWGCR) claimed that cloud downtime had cost £45 million over five...

By Matt Kingswood, 22 December 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Best Practice, Data Management, Infrastructure, SLA, Vendors.

Microsoft launches cloud services due diligence checklist

(c)iStock.com/cruphoto

Microsoft has launched a cloud services due diligence checklist aimed at providing organisations with more standardised procedures for their potential cloud push.

The checklist is based on the emerging ISO/IEC 19086 standard which focuses on cloud service level agreements, and gives structure to organisations of all sizes and sectors to identify their objectives and requirements, before comparing the offerings of different cloud service providers.

“Cloud adoption is no longer simply a...

By James Bourne, 17 October 2016, 1 comment. Categories: Microsoft, Privacy, Security, SLA.

Cloud Industry Forum hails SLALOM as “major step forward” for cloud SLAs

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SLALOM, a European Commission-established initiative which aims to provide greater clarity for businesses dealing with cloud service level agreements (SLAs), has launched its final set of standardised contact terms, with the Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) arguing it ‘reduces the uncertainty’ of migrating to the cloud.

The CIF, who is listed as a partner of SLALOM alongside service provider Atos, legal firm Bird and Bird and various educational institutions, says research into the...

By James Bourne, 17 June 2016, 1 comment. Categories: Economy, SLA, Vendors.

UK government report advocates fairer terms for cloud storage users

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Around 30% of UK adults use cloud storage in a personal capacity, according to a report released today by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) – but the governing body notes concerns over some vendor practices which conflict with consumer law.

The report, which can be found in full here at a whopping 218 pages, shares concerns, such as companies being able to...

By James Bourne, 27 May 2016, 0 comments. Categories: Regulation, Research, SLA, Software, Storage.