|By Lori MacVittie||
|October 31, 2014 05:00 PM EDT||
Cloud and Things and Big Operational Data
Software-defined architectures are critical for achieving the right mix of efficiency and scale needed to meet the challenges that will come with the Internet of Things
If you've been living under a rock (or rack in the data center) you might not have noticed the explosive growth of technologies and architectures designed to address emerging challenges with scaling data centers. Whether considering the operational aspects (devops) or technical components (SDN, SDDC, Cloud), software-defined architectures are the future enabler of business, fueled by the increasing demand for applications.
The Internet of Things is only going to make that even more challenging as businesses turn to new business models and services fueled by a converging digital-physical world. Applications, whether focused on licensing, provisioning, managing or storing data for these "things" will increase the already significant burden on IT as a whole. The inability to scale from an operational perspective is really what software-defined architectures are attempting to solve by operationalizing the network to shift the burden of provisioning and management from people to technology.
But it's more than just API-enabling switches, routers, ADCs and other infrastructure components. While this is a necessary capability to ensure the operational scalability of modern data centers, what's really necessary to achieve the next "level" is collaboration.
That means infrastructure integration.
it is one thing to be able to automatically provision the network, compute and storage resources necessary to scale to meet the availability and performance expectations of users and businesses alike. But that's the last step in the process. Actually performing the provisioning is the action that's taken after it's determined not only that it's necessary, but where it's necessary.
Workloads (and I hate that term but it's at least somewhat universally understood so I'll acquiesce to using it for now) have varying characteristics with respect to the compute, network and storage they require to perform optimally. That's means provisioning a "workload" in a VM with characteristics that do not match the requirements is necessarily going to impact its performance or load capability. If one is making assumptions regarding the number of users a given application can support, and it's provisioned with a resource profile that impacts that support, it can lead to degrading performance or availability.
Data, is the key. Measurements of performance, rates of queries, number of users, and the resulting impact on the workload must be captured. But more than that, it must be shared with the systems responsible for provisioning and scaling the workloads.
This is not a new concept, that we should be able to share data across systems and services to ensure the best fit for provisioning and seamless scale demanded of modern architectures. A 2007 SIGMOD paper, "Automated and On-Demand Provisioning of Virtual Machines for Database Applications" as well as a 2010 IEEE paper, "Dynamic Provisioning Modeling for Virtualized Multi-tier Applications in Cloud Data Center" discuss the need for such provisioning models and the resulting architectures rely heavily on the collaboration of the data center components responsible for measuring, managing and provisioning workloads in cloud computing environments through integration.
The location of a workload, you see, matters. Not location as in "on-premise" or "off-premise", though that certainly has an impact, but the location within the data center matters to the overall performance and scale of the applications composed from those workloads. The location of a specific workload comparative to other components impacts availability and traffic patterns that can result in higher incidents of north-south or east-west congestion in the network. Location of application workloads can cause hairpinning (or tromboning if you prefer) of traffic that may degrade performance or introduce variable latency that degrades the quality of video or audio content.
Location matters a great deal, and yet the very premise of cloud is to abstract topology (location) from the equation and remove it from consideration as part of the provisioning process.
Early in the life of public cloud there was concern over not knowing "who your neighbor tenant" might be on a given physical server, because there was little transparency into the decision making process that governs provisioning of instances in public cloud environments. The depth of such decisions appeared to - and still appear to - be made based on your preference for the "size" of an instance. Obviously, Amazon or Azure or Google is not going to provision a "large" instance where only a "small" will fit.
But the question of where, topologically, that "large" instance might end up residing is still unanswered. It might be two hops away or one virtual hop away. You can't know if your entire application - all its components - have been launched on the same physical server or not. And that can have dire consequences in a model that's "built to fail" because if all your eggs are in one basket and the basket breaks... well, minutes of downtime is still downtime.
The next evolutionary step in cloud (besides the emergence of much needed value added services) is more intelligent provisioning driven by better feedback loops regarding the relationship between the combination of compute, network and storage resources and the application. Big (Operational) Data is going to be as important to IT as Big (Customer) Data is to the business as more and more applications and services become critical to the business.
Predictive analytics tools monitor, report, and troubleshoot in order to make proactive decisions about the health, performance, and utilization of storage. Most enterprises combine cloud and on-premise storage, resulting in blended environments of physical, virtual, cloud, and other platforms, which justifies more sophisticated storage analytics. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Peter McCallum, Vice President of Datacenter Solutions at FalconStor, discussed using predictive analytics to mon...
Dec. 5, 2016 09:00 PM EST Reads: 4,949
The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform and how we integrate our thinking to solve complicated problems. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and sh...
Dec. 5, 2016 08:45 PM EST Reads: 428
Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more business becomes digital the more stakeholders are interested in this data including how it relates to business. Some of these people have never used a monitoring tool before. They have a question on their mind like “How is my application doing” but no id...
Dec. 5, 2016 07:45 PM EST Reads: 2,217
@GonzalezCarmen has been ranked the Number One Influencer and @ThingsExpo has been named the Number One Brand in the “M2M 2016: Top 100 Influencers and Brands” by Onalytica. Onalytica analyzed tweets over the last 6 months mentioning the keywords M2M OR “Machine to Machine.” They then identified the top 100 most influential brands and individuals leading the discussion on Twitter.
Dec. 5, 2016 07:45 PM EST Reads: 2,083
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...
Dec. 5, 2016 07:15 PM EST Reads: 366
Get deep visibility into the performance of your databases and expert advice for performance optimization and tuning. You can't get application performance without database performance. Give everyone on the team a comprehensive view of how every aspect of the system affects performance across SQL database operations, host server and OS, virtualization resources and storage I/O. Quickly find bottlenecks and troubleshoot complex problems.
Dec. 5, 2016 07:15 PM EST Reads: 2,063
IoT is rapidly changing the way enterprises are using data to improve business decision-making. In order to derive business value, organizations must unlock insights from the data gathered and then act on these. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, and Peter Shashkin, Head of Development Department at EastBanc Technologies, discussed how one organization leveraged IoT, cloud technology and data analysis to improve customer experiences and effici...
Dec. 5, 2016 07:15 PM EST Reads: 5,039
In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Claude Remillard, Principal Program Manager in Developer Division at Microsoft, contrasted how his team used config as code and immutable patterns for continuous delivery of microservices and apps to the cloud. He showed how the immutable patterns helps developers do away with most of the complexity of config as code-enabling scenarios such as rollback, zero downtime upgrades with far greater simplicity. He also demoed building immutable pipelines in the cloud ...
Dec. 5, 2016 07:00 PM EST Reads: 1,813
@DevOpsSummit taking place June 6-8, 2017 at Javits Center, New York City, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo New York Call for Papers is now open.
Dec. 5, 2016 07:00 PM EST Reads: 1,846
In IT, we sometimes coin terms for things before we know exactly what they are and how they’ll be used. The resulting terms may capture a common set of aspirations and goals – as “cloud” did broadly for on-demand, self-service, and flexible computing. But such a term can also lump together diverse and even competing practices, technologies, and priorities to the point where important distinctions are glossed over and lost.
Dec. 5, 2016 06:15 PM EST Reads: 1,555
As data explodes in quantity, importance and from new sources, the need for managing and protecting data residing across physical, virtual, and cloud environments grow with it. Managing data includes protecting it, indexing and classifying it for true, long-term management, compliance and E-Discovery. Commvault can ensure this with a single pane of glass solution – whether in a private cloud, a Service Provider delivered public cloud or a hybrid cloud environment – across the heterogeneous enter...
Dec. 5, 2016 05:45 PM EST Reads: 1,602
All clouds are not equal. To succeed in a DevOps context, organizations should plan to develop/deploy apps across a choice of on-premise and public clouds simultaneously depending on the business needs. This is where the concept of the Lean Cloud comes in - resting on the idea that you often need to relocate your app modules over their life cycles for both innovation and operational efficiency in the cloud. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at19th Cloud Expo, Valentin (Val) Bercovici, CTO of Soli...
Dec. 5, 2016 05:15 PM EST Reads: 1,690
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, discussed the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
Dec. 5, 2016 04:30 PM EST Reads: 2,059
Regulatory requirements exist to promote the controlled sharing of information, while protecting the privacy and/or security of the information. Regulations for each type of information have their own set of rules, policies, and guidelines. Cloud Service Providers (CSP) are faced with increasing demand for services at decreasing prices. Demonstrating and maintaining compliance with regulations is a nontrivial task and doing so against numerous sets of regulatory requirements can be daunting task...
Dec. 5, 2016 04:30 PM EST Reads: 877
Successful digital transformation requires new organizational competencies and capabilities. Research tells us that the biggest impediment to successful transformation is human; consequently, the biggest enabler is a properly skilled and empowered workforce. In the digital age, new individual and collective competencies are required. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Bob Newhouse, CEO and founder of Agilitiv, drew together recent research and lessons learned from emerging and established compa...
Dec. 5, 2016 04:15 PM EST Reads: 864