Adapting Your Operation for Cloud Computing

Industry chatter sells cloud and cloud computing as the answer to all our IT concerns and business needs. Instituting operational changes is critical to receive the full benefits of cloud computing.

Rob Jackson is a Product Manager at Rackspace Hosting and responsible for the management of the company's virtualization products.

Rackspace Hosting

Our industry is currently experiencing the growing pains of having our head in the cloud and our feet firmly planted in the data center. Industry chatter sells cloud and cloud computing as the answer to all our IT concerns and business needs, and the rapid growth of the segment definitely aligns with this positioning. There are great benefits to be had and efficiencies to be gained from shared environments. When considering the use of any cloud environment, one must examine a few key technology concerns to ensure one’s project is set up for success: security, compliance and performance. Actually adapting to cloud technology involves going a step further and instituting operational changes to receive the full benefits of cloud computing.

There is a lot of buzz around cloud in the market place. Early adopters have been enjoying the benefits for a while, but new users still have lingering concerns over security and compliance, which vary by use case and industry. We’ve heard extensively of the assets associated with this technology: cost savings from reduced capital expenditures; the ease of use it affords businesses; the agility a cloud empowers the industry as a whole with to propel us forward and transform our status quo. With the technological world in a constant evolution of ideas, processes, and applications, cloud computing can centralize it all.

These benefits are great and serve to drive awareness and adoption for public cloud and cloud computing-shedding a business light on the hosting world not often felt. For those of us using a cloud environment or computing power currently, or merely dipping our toe into the virtual world, we are now tasked with personalizing the cloud for our applications. What business problems will the cloud help us solve? How can cloud computing benefit an organization with already established systems that currently enjoy easy and familiar access for users?

In order to address these important concerns, and others unique to our specific industry or organization, we as data center professionals must be willing to change and adapt our internal operations to reap the full benefits of a cloud environment and cloud computing. By doing so, we will make the transition smooth, and ideally unnoticed, for our business coworkers. A personalized cloud will aid the business in saving money, handling the unexpected, and acclimating to the full benefits possible in a virtual environment.

In tomorrow's Industry Perspectives column, Rackspace Product Engineer Joel Wineland will elaborate on the specific data center changes needed to adapt to and ultimately sustain a cloud environment intomorrow will be. Specifically: what are the DC “checkboxes” needed and what are the operations changes required to optimize business value.

Industry Perspectives is a content channel at Data Center Knowledge highlighting thought leadership in the data center arena. See our guidelines and submission process for information on participating. View previously published Industry Perspectives in our Knowledge Library.

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