Modern x86-based computer systems have changed the landscape of data centers. Giant supercomputers are no longer required to store massive amounts of data. As a result, data centers can be built smaller, and more efficiently, while still maintain the necessary storage and computing power that clients required. Most IT firms have access to the hardware and software needed to build a modern data center.
Virtualization has also helped to expand the usefulness of data centers. Even most major enterprise-level software can be virtualized, allowing it to run more efficiently and serve more clients within a single data center. This eliminates the inherent rigidity of separate hardware arrays for each client.
With the ability to virtualize client accounts, it allows for maximum utilization of existing hardware. Underutilized components that would have existed on within each separate array are eliminated and instead, are now part of a single large array and can be re-tasked to another client that needs the extra power.
This ability to optimize capacity is what gives cloud-based computing a serious edge over traditional storage systems. The service that is provided to each client can be rapidly scaled, up or down, too perfectly meet their needs. Ideally, when service is scaled down to accommodate a client, that unused capacity can be used to satisfy a client that is in need of a larger solution.
In this situation, in a traditional data center, hardware would have to be left idle, or taken off-line to accommodate the client that was downsizing. The data center would then have to decide if that hardware should be left unused or physically reallocated to a different array to serve the client who needs more power.
The ability of a cloud-based system to scale virtually can eliminate these situations. Software can be used to reallocate unused assets in a fraction of the time it takes to move hardware. Business benefit from a system that is perfect suited to their capabilities, Service providers benefit from a hardware array that is never underutilized and offers a simple way to re-task hardware.
Protecting all of this virtualizing are security trends that are continuing to evolve and adapt to modern threats. The public nature of the cloud is the single biggest factor that prevents businesses from trusting their sensitive data to this new technology. IT firms have adapted new methods of securing data and consulting outfits have be created specifically to help companies and IT firms find secure methods of protecting their data.
About the Author: Deney Dentel is the CEO at Nordisk Systems, Inc. Nordisk Systems is the only local IBM Premier Business Partner based in the Pacific Northwest, specialized in all IT solutions including cloud computing services, servers manged service, storage and virtualization.
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