Key Trends for Data Centers Transformation in 2011 – Next-Gen Data Centers

Times are changing and IT is leading the transformation:

datacenter_next gen IT organizations, are pressurized between improved performances expectations, growing data and network bandwidth, cost reduction targets, converged architectures and technology innovations. As a results all large enterprises and SMB have a common short term objective to transform their data center to become a `Next-Gen Data Center. For this there are some key steps to take and here are some major trends we can predict to achieve this transformation in 2011 and beyond:

More performant, cost effective, energy efficient hardware platforms:data-center-costs

 From the silicon semi-conductor & processors, to the servers, to the data storage, to the networking switches, to the rack or data center cooling systems, at all level some very competitive and innovative offerings are coming to market from major vendors as well as start-ups with more performance, cheaper price, and more specially more energy efficient hardware platforms, helping to reduce the cost of acquisition (Capex) and of operating (OPEX) a data center.

Consolidation:

data center consolidationServers & Data Centers Consolidation simplify IT workload and the management of complex IT infrastructure, optimize floor space, power and cooling, and staffing while providing required flexibility to rapidly adapt to changing business needs. Combining multiple data centers into a single facility is a primary strategy for cutting costs while improving service levels.

 

Virtualization: server-virtualization-storage

With the economic recovery, Industry Analysts predicts an increase on IT spending in 2011,and we can predict that much of the data center transformation spending will be around virtualization. Virtualization of servers, storage, networks and applications will provide many benefits including cost savings and consolidation, energy consumption reduction, as well as the flexibility to meet new business requirements.

Cloud Computing:

cloud-computingThe Hype is over, mature and competitive offerings are available from serious vendors and providers, market acceptance is growing and SMB as well as major enterprises will be starting to deploy cloud platforms and leverage cloud architecture and services for some critical Web 2.0 applications in what some people call a “Data Center without Walls”.

 

Modular design: data_center_design

To reduce the cost and time to build a data center and to reduce the space required, a shift will operate to standard modular data center designs, instead of traditional floor-raised design, specifically built for each customer.

Key Performance Indicators:

data-center-best-practicesPerformance measurements and metrics will be more important, KPI will be developed and adopted to better measure performance, capacity planning, change control processes, system utilization, efficiency, energy consumption, and sustainability, moving to the Green Data Center vision, using renewable energy.

 

 

In summary, green data centers

Energy Efficiency, Cost Reduction, and Flexibility are the Key words for 2011 and the design and operations management of next-gen data center tends toward these requirements. Data Center transformation will be achieved through next-gen energy efficient hardware platforms, consolidation, virtualization, cloud computing, green initiatives, modular designs and best measurement practices, to enable organizations to quickly and cost effectively respond to market demands and new revenue opportunities.

Are you ready to lead  the transformation to next-gen data center ?

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The Future is Bright for Linux

Linux, the new kid on the block of operating systems has been enjoying a steady growth and adoption in the Enterprise Servers segment for the last few years and especially in the Largest Enterprises, Fortune 1,000 and Government Agencies.

ibl linux tux imagesCAOQGB17 In the early days, few years ago, around 2002/2003, as I was a Product Marketing Manager and a Linux Advocate , part of the IBM Linux Technology Center, we were advocating and preaching the benefits of Linux to our customers, our ecosystems of partners, & developers, to Press & Media, in order to accelerate Linux adoption, and we had to overcome many obstacles; our programmers were developing codes in our Linux Labs to offer to the Linux Open Source Community; Our Linux Team was building integrated infrastructure offering for ISVs and customers to build their applications on top and we were collaborating with Industries Open Standards groups to create Industry Open Frameworks. We have been just a part of a much larger movement, but we had been embracing this new wave, and our involvement has modestly but certainly been helping the early adoption of this new OS in the Enterprise segment and I am glad to have been part of it.

Only few years later, today, it’s amazing to see how Linux has been evolving, growing and is widely recognised as an Enterprise level OS.

So from whom is Linux grabbing market share?

Originally Linux was mainly used by early adopters for tests, pilots and developers, and then it quickly started to replace UNIX in the Enterprise to migrate UNIX applications or deploy new Edge applications and by more and more developers to develop new applications.

In a second phase adoption went broader to more enterprises, migrating more and more UNIX applications, and moved to more mission-critical applications.

However lately Linux is also significantly grabbing market share from Microsoft and that is indeed a new trend.

-The latest report published by Linux Foundation End User Council (a non-profit organisation) and Yeoman Technology Group reveals some very interesting facts and numbers that I would summarise for you:

  • 76.4%of Big companies are planning to add more Linux servers in the nextLinux Adoption year,
  • 41.2% are planning to add Windows servers in the next year,
  • 43.6% are planning to decrease use of Windows servers in the next year,
  • 60% are planning to use Linux for more mission critical workloads,
  • 66% are deploying new applications on Linux,
  • 36% are migrating from Windows,
  • 31.4% are migrating from Unix to Linux,
  • CIOs see Linux as more strategic, and less as a way to just cut cost,
  • Features and technical superiority came in at 67.5% as the primary driver for adopting Linux,
  • 65.4% said lower TCO is a factor but not the first driver,
  • 50% said that ability to modify code was a reason to adopt Linux,
  • 45.8% said that long-term viability of the platform is a reason to adopt Linux,
  • 33% say that they test and submit bug reports,
  • 13.4% actively contribute code to Linux,
  • 70.3% are using Linux as their primary cloud platform,
  • 86.5% of respondents feel Linux continues to improve,
  • 60% of their CIO sees Linux as more strategic to the organization as compared to three years ago.

So in conclusion we can see some clear market trends:

Linux Unix_F – Linux continue to take market share from UNIX but now also grab market share from Windows.

– Large Enterprise plans to deploy more Linux servers than Windows servers in the next year and even more in the next 5 years.

– Linux adoption by large enterprises is accelerating and moving from edge to mission-critical workloads.

– Features, technical superiority, security and quality are the major drivers of adoption and not lower cost or better TCO anymore.

– Customer satisfaction is quite high.

– Linux is dominant for new developments and deployments on Cloud infrastructures and brand new “Greenfield” environment, which is the future.

The picture is not totally Pink, there is still a few obstacles on the road, the two top concerns about Linux adoption are hardware drivers and interoperability, and in third a lack of skilled resources –which is good news for the job market.

Interesting data came from another study done by Springboard Research in partnership with Spiceworks, in India, where small and mid-size businesses are increasingly favouring the Linux operating system, showing that between April 2009 and May 2010, overall Linux server OS adoption in India increased to 8.1 percent from just 7 percent and continues to rise.

This survey also revealed that Linux adoption in the Asia/Pacific region registered at almost 26 percent higher than in the U.S. and grew even faster than the global average.

So: Is Linux the UNIX Killer AND the Windows Killer?linux-wallpaper-006

For sure Linux has not been successfully yet on the desktop side, except for the unconditional love of many software developers and computers geeks, but its success on the server side has been demonstrated.

All this combined clearly shows that Linux is on the Rise and we can predict without risk a Bright Future for Linux.