Tag Archives: Infrastructure

Cloud Infrastructure is On the Way

In Saugatuck’s recent IT Infrastructure survey, companies indicated a strong preference to shift their IT infrastructures to the Cloud over the next 4 years. Figure 1 shows that while few companies are currently using Cloud as their primary Infrastructure, within 4 years, the balance shifts almost entirely toward the Cloud, with significant focus on Hybrid Cloud (combination of Public and Private Cloud).

Figure 1: Future IT Infrastructure Portfolio

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Source: Saugatuck Technology, Cloud Infrastructure Survey, April 2015, n=327 (global)

As a result of this shift to the Cloud, many companies are likely to change their purchasing mix of on-premises hardware to Cloud infrastructure. Currently, many companies indicate that they prefer to purchase both Cloud and On-premises infrastructure and services from Name-brand vendors like IBM, Lenovo, HP, Oracle, and Cisco. Over time, however, the shift toward more Public Cloud is likely to prove more of a boon to the current IaaS providers like Amazon, Microsoft, and Rackspace. Continue reading Cloud Infrastructure is On the Way

Survey Says: Workloads Are Moving to Cloud Infrastructures

In 1Q2015 Saugatuck executed a global Web-based Cloud Infrastructure Survey and compiled the responses from 327 IT executives spanning major geographies and business sizes. The survey results appear in a summary 73-page report published in April. Ongoing, in-depth analyses of the survey responses reveal insights into how IT executives are planning to evolve their IT infrastructures. Infrastructure transition requires consideration of where to deploy specific workloads, both existing and new. This Strategic Perspective focuses on our assessment that not only new but also existing workloads are moving to the Cloud in most organizations and the migration will accelerate into 2017. Continue reading Survey Says: Workloads Are Moving to Cloud Infrastructures

Think Beyond Cloud to a Malleable Infrastructure

In 1Q2015 Saugatuck executed a global Web-based Cloud Infrastructure Survey and compiled the responses from 327 IT executives spanning major geographies and business sizes. The survey results are summarized in the 73 page Strategic Report (1599SSR, 2015 Infrastructure Survey: Next-gen IT – Cloud on the March, 01Apr2015 – or click here for Lens360 blog post summary). Subsequent in-depth analyses of the survey responses are yielding additional insights.

In addition, we recently identified five challenges faced by most IT organizations (1599MKT, Containers: The Infrastructure Para-Upgrade, 26June2015) as:

  1. Increasing demand from users for both new functionality (e.g., mobility, analytics, etc.) and new application solutions;
  2. User dissatisfaction over the protracted time and high costs required for the development and implementation of new functionality and new application solutions;
  3. Escalating costs for maintaining a steadily growing inventory of production workloads and infrastructure;
  4. Budgets constraints; and,
  5. Diminishing or exhausted “payback” from major infrastructure initiatives in centralization/consolidation, and virtualization as older devices, sometimes lacking enhancements to minimize overheads, are pushed to their limits.

Saugatuck fully agrees that appropriate use of Cloud infrastructure can yield significant benefits applicable to all five of the challenges listed above. However, Saugatuck has identified that challenge three is sometimes being incorrectly interpreted as a reason to implement “wholesale” migrations of production application workloads to Cloud infrastructures. Responses to our recent Cloud Infrastructure Survey provide the following data as indicators of this flaw in IT infrastructure planning: Continue reading Think Beyond Cloud to a Malleable Infrastructure

Containers for App Dev

Earlier this year Saugatuck executed a global Web-based Cloud Infrastructure Survey of 327 IT executives spanning major geographies and business sizes. The survey results are summarized in a recently published report (see Saugatuck’s 73-page Strategic Report 2015 Infrastructure Survey: Next-gen IT – Cloud on the March, 1553SSR, 01Apr2015). Subsequent, in-depth analysis of the survey responses is yielding additional insights in areas such as executive-level perceptions of the impact of new technologies. A just published Strategic Perspective focuses on our assessment that respondents are underestimating the likely impact of a key new technology: containers.

Almost all IT organizations are facing five simultaneous challenges:

  1. Increasing user demand both for new functionality and for new application solutions;
  2. User dissatisfaction over the protracted time and high costs required for new application development;
  3. Increasing costs for maintaining a continually growing inventory of production workloads and infrastructure;
  4. Budgets constraints; and
  5. Diminishing or exhausted “payback” from major infrastructure initiatives in centralization/consolidation, and virtualization.

Continue reading Containers for App Dev

Tight Budgets and Impending Upgrades Drive Cloud Evaluation

Saugatuck recently released findings from our 2015 Cloud Infrastructure Survey. This global Web survey of 327 IT executives spanning major geographies and business sizes clearly shows that IT infrastructures are transitioning from traditional On-premises resources to Cloud-based alternatives. In a just published Strategic Perspective we look at one facet revealed by the survey: planned infrastructure upgrades for key workloads.

For most IT organizations, budgets are always tight. In the past few years IT budgets have been stretched even thinner than during “normal” years as a result of budget cuts due to lingering sluggish economic conditions and an explosion of demand for IT resources to accommodate new requirements including mobility, analytics, and social.

Saugatuck projects that the demand for computing resources will continue to grow rapidly – and, in increasingly dynamic and erratic increments. Continue reading Tight Budgets and Impending Upgrades Drive Cloud Evaluation

Infrastructure Selection Criteria: Increasing Importance of Managed Services

What is Happening?          

Saugatuck recently released the findings from its 2015 Cloud Infrastructure Survey. The data clearly shows that IT infrastructures are transitioning rapidly from traditional On-premises resources to a range of alternatives – including Internal Private Cloud, Hosted Private Cloud, Public Cloud and Hybrid (On-premises + Public Cloud). The infrastructure transition is both the result of and the enabler of increasing migration of conventional On-premises production workloads to the Cloud, and the deployment of new workloads designed for Cloud functionality.

The research also shows that as usage of Cloud-based offerings broadens and deepens, the evaluation and selection criteria used by IT organizations will evolve – including recognition that Managed Services will play an important role. The new criteria will be dictated by a combination of factors: org. capabilities, workload characteristics, and workload criticality. These are a few of the findings from our global web survey of 327 IT execs spanning major geos and business sizes. This Research Alert focuses on the evolving criteria for selection of Cloud offerings.

Why is it Happening?

Many IT executives are increasingly recognizing that the inefficiencies and the inertia inherent in their traditional infrastructure are inhibitors to the businesses. Thus, even as they are striving to modernize applications with new capabilities such as mobility and analytics, they are adopting more agile infrastructure alternatives. In addition, the majority of IT execs recognize the value of transitioning existing support-oriented IT organizations toward Collaborative and Innovative orgs that are more focused on “serving the business” than on managing and operating IT assets.

Market Impact

In an earlier Research Alert (Evolving Infrastructure Profiles – The Shift to the Cloud Accelerates, 1543RA, 13March2015 – Click Here for Lens360 blog version), we highlighted the transition from mostly Virtualized Infrastructures toward Cloud alternatives. The survey also revealed that respondents expect the profiles of their IT organizations to evolve from mostly Supportive to mostly Innovative over the next four years. Specifically:

  • While the traditional IT organization profile (i.e., Supportive) is the most common today, by 2019 it shrinks from 41 percent to only 12 percent. The majority of this transition is due to interim shifts to Proactive and Collaborative, followed by shift to Innovative.

Figure 1: Current and Projected IT Organization Profiles

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Source: Saugatuck Technology Inc. Cloud Infrastructure Survey, April 2015, n=327 (global) Continue reading Infrastructure Selection Criteria: Increasing Importance of Managed Services

AWS Summit 2015: Public Cloud and Microservices

What is Happening?

Yesterday, Saugatuck attended the AWS Summit 2015 in San Francisco, where Amazon gave an update on their business, and released several new products to the nearly 10,000 attendees at the Moscone Center and the 7,000 who watched the livestream. Andy Jassy, SVP of Web Services at Amazon kicked off the keynote by highlighting some key statistics about the business: from 4Q13 to 4Q14 they experienced 103 percent year-over-year growth in the amount of Data transferred into and out of S3 (Simple Storage Service) and 93 percent growth in the use of their compute service EC2. They now have over 1 million active users who have used the service in the last month.

Jassy brought several companies out to discuss the value of the AWS Cloud infrastructure. Jason Kilar, the founding CEO of Hulu, and now CEO of Vessel, a startup focused on video sharing and consumption, highlighted the ability to keep his team small, and focus on the business without having to build infrastructure. Wilf Russel, VP of Digital Technology Development at Nike described how the Cloud has fundamentally changed their application architecture and described their shift toward DevOps and Microservices. Valentini Volonghi, CTO at AdRoll discussed how the Cloud gave their business the reach to reduce latency by distributing their app around the globe. And Colin Bodell, CTO & EVP at Time Inc. who is migrating all of Time’s datacenters to AWS, citing that in the UK, they took their datacenter monthly run rate from $70,000 to $17,000.

Finally, Jassy used the opportunity to make several product announcements:

  1. Amazon Elastic File System (EFS) – a fully managed filesystem that can span multiple EC2 instances to enable multiple concurrent and scalable connections to a single file directory.
  2. Amazon Machine Learning Service – A one-size-fits all service that enables non-experts to implement Machine Learning algorithms on their data sets, or within their applications. This offers a simple API for training and modeling calculations which can then be called to perform specific machine learning tasks.
  3. Amazon Workspaces and AWS Marketplace for Desktop Apps – an Amazon VDI product to enable companies to create virtual desktops, as well as purchase, manage and provision the software for those desktop applications.
  4. The GA release of the Amazon EC2 Container Service – The Amazon tool for deploying, managing, updating, and running Docker clusters.
  5. The GA release of AWS Lambda – a Service designed to perform trigger / event driven compute in small doses. Provides a way to perform small, scripted tasks in real-time when triggers are initiated. Amazon highlighted its use in sending notifications, indexing, IoT, and as a serverless mobile backend. At present, Lambda only supports Node.js, but is adding support for Java in the coming weeks.

Continue reading AWS Summit 2015: Public Cloud and Microservices

Cloud Infrastructure Survey: New Report Findings

What is Happening?           

Earlier today, Saugatuck Technology released the findings from its just completed Cloud Infrastructure Survey. The research and analysis clearly shows that businesses are moving rapidly away from traditional On-premises systems toward a range of Cloud infrastructure alternatives – including Internal Private Cloud, Hosted Private Cloud, Public Cloud and Hybrid (On-premises + Public Cloud). While CRM, HCM and Marketing-based SaaS solutions have dominated early Cloud decisions deployments, and more recently Cloud-based Finance offerings have begun to gain traction – the growing migration of On-premises production workloads to the Cloud, as well as the creation and deployment of Cloud-native production workloads clearly shows that we are entering a new phase in the transition.

Across major infrastructure services, both in the Cloud and On-premises, companies indicate a broad desire to upgrade their capabilities over the next two years. Additionally, On-premises virtualization – the dominant platform for IT Infrastructure today – will be supplanted with a combination of both Internal and Hosted Private Clouds, often supported by next-gen containerization technologies. While very few companies expect to be running entirely on Public Cloud by the end of the decade, a combination of Private and Public Cloud infrastructures (supporting production workloads), along with publically-available SaaS solutions (across an array of functional domains) will become increasingly the norm.

These are just a few of the conclusions from Saugatuck’s 73-page Strategic Report, released earlier today (Next-gen IT – Cloud on the March, 1553SSR, 02Apr2015). The report leverages a global web survey of 327 senior IT executives, across major geographic regions and business sizes. Continue reading Cloud Infrastructure Survey: New Report Findings

Software Defined Networking (SDN): Core to the Future of the Data Center?

Software Defined Networking (SDN) is emerging as a new architecture for infrastructure flexibility in enterprises and in providers of Cloud infrastructure offerings. SDN is based upon separating the control layer from the data transport layer in a communications network. A key advantage is the use of a virtualized architecture that enables the use of commodity servers rather than custom-designed network controllers.

Some enterprises have taken steps to adopt software defined networking in their data centers, where it provides cost advantages and more flexibility in network configuration, and thus can accelerate implementation of new applications through DevOps techniques. For example, using DevOps, an application can be readily tested by temporarily accessing cloud resources to run the application at scale.

While enterprises have learned that a key attraction of virtualization is that it provides a means to make changes to an infrastructure easily and quickly – SDN presents a dilemma for vendors of traditional networking controllers. SDN enables the use of commodity-priced servers rather than conventional proprietary controllers in network infrastructures. This is quite attractive to enterprises due to the potential for significant cost savings (see Figure 1), and due to the greater flexibility in equipment and vendor selection. Continue reading Software Defined Networking (SDN): Core to the Future of the Data Center?

Hyperscale: An Adverb or an Adjective?

What is Happening?           

Over the last several months, Saugatuck has been looking into phenomena increasingly (and commonly) referred to as “Hyperscale”. Hyperscale appears to be entering common parlance just as Cloud became increasingly well-understood and then mainstream over the past five plus years. Common definitions of Hyperscale focus on two major factors: the speed of scaling resources allocated to a task; and the extent of the resources available in the infrastructure.

However, just as Cloud offerings today don’t look like the Cloud offerings of 3 years ago, the requirements and usage of infrastructures that can be termed Hyperscale are evolving rapidly. Not too long ago, a primary value proposition for Cloud infrastructure adoption was economic, due to improved hardware utilization through automation of resource provisioning / allocation to individual workloads. This same automated provisioning is now viewed as a significant boon to IT and Business agility, not just a means to save money.

Similarly, Hyperscale has been viewed as a requirement for some types of workloads and as a foundation for some Cloud providers. However, Saugatuck projects that Hyperscale will increasingly become recognized as a key enabler of new types of application design, and broadly deployed among a much larger pool of Cloud infrastructures. Continue reading Hyperscale: An Adverb or an Adjective?