AFCOM Releases Cloud Computing Guide

Data center industry trade group AFCOM has released "Guiding Data Centers to Cloud Computing," a position paper with recommends for data center managers eyeing cloud computing services.

Data center industry trade group AFCOM has released "Guiding Data Centers to Cloud Computing," a position paper with recommends for data center managers considering cloud computing services. The paper is free to AFCOM members, but costs $175 for non-members.

Cloud computing has been a prominent focus of industry events and discussion for several years. AFCOM has taken a deliberate approach in offering guidance on the topic for its 4,000 members. The group has featured keynotes on cloud computing at recent Data Center World conferences, but today's paper represents its most specific guidance to date on the transition to cloud services.

AFCOM says the paper is "not designed to debate the definition of cloud computing" but instead provide specific guidance for the data center manager. 

"The purpose of this paper is to help AFCOM members understand the issues they will need to address since the architecture of clouds will drive the way future data centers are built, configured and operated," said Tom Roberts, Director, DC Facility Management, Trinity Information Services.

"The decision to move to the cloud can be challenging because it raises many concerns dealing with having less direct operational control, and the preparedness of the cloud provider when it comes to training, meeting your existing Service Level Agreements, and physical and data security,” Roberts added.

AFCOM says the guide addresses tips for selecting the right cloud provider, the value of cloud computing, and "Ten Steps for Building an Internal Cloud."

"Data center managers are dealing with cramped facilities, massive data growth, tight budgets and archive mandates that have created nearly impossible storage requirements," said Jill Eckhaus, the CEO of AFCOM. "Cloud computing works to contain these issues and make data centers more manageable and cost effective, but data centers will have to be prepared in order to leverage public clouds, or become a public or private cloud."

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