Monday May 21, 2012

iPad and tablets - Back to thick client devices and 3270 vendor lock in?

I just keep thinking that the proliferation of iPads and tablets in the enterprise is leading us back to the path of thick client computing. Don't get me wrong, I love the iPad and believe it is a great device....for emails, surfing the web, playing music, playing games, and getting directions. However, it is as thick of a client device as you can get. In addition, just like 3270 screens were proprietary, they are a proprietary platform. It seems like just yesterday everyone was rushing to get off of client/server systems and move to thin client machines with browser based access.

Wednesday Nov 09, 2011

Forth Key attribute of Cloud Computing - Provisioning

Provisioning the system from end to end - OS, hardware, storage, application, network and datavase need to be self service provisioned. Provisioning is dynamic and self-service provisioning of applications involves deploying applications to your cloud infrastructure with a few mouse clicks. So, when moving to the cloud, application provisioning will be made easier since there are not hundreds or thousands of client machines to deploy too. Self-service provisioning of computing infrastructure in a cloud infrastructure is also very desirable as it can cut down the time it takes to deploy new infrastructure for a new application or scale up/down infrastructure for an existing application. Public cloud service providers like Savvis, Terremark, and AT&T all have self-service portals where users can sign up for cloud services and their compute infrastructure is ready within hours for usage. Oracle Enterprise Manager provides many Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) that can be incorporated into the self-service portals of cloud providers to automate the provisioning of compute infrastructure for Oracle products such as Oracle Fusion Middleware and Oracle database.

Saturday Oct 01, 2011

Metering and chargeback- First key attribute of cloud computing

This entry along with the next three will be about the key attributes of cloud computing. Cloud computing is not virtualization, putting your computing resources on the internet or consolidating IT resources. There are four key atributes that you must have to really be 'on the cloud'. Metering and chargeback – Metering and chargeback are mechanisms for gathering compute resource usage (metering) and then charging back the user, department, or company for the computing cycle that they consume. In the client/server model, metering and chargeback were not necessary because each user had their own personal computer and typically each department or customer had their own database server. Today, most cloud services are offered on flat pricing model structured upon usage of computing resources for fixed unit of time (month or days). Although this model reduces the cost of using IT infrastructure, end users and developers pay a price regardless of actual usage. If a user subscribes for a compute infrastructure for a month and even if they actively use it for only 10 or 15 days, they still have to pay for entire month. This pricing model is typically derived by calculating the overall cost of the infrastructure (acquisition cost + operational cost + margin) and then dividing the amount by a fixed unit of time such as months, days, or years. Using sophisticated metering and chargeback tools provide both public and private cloud providers the ability to monitor actual usage of resources by the users and then charge them accordingly. Accurate resource usage information (metering) up to the minute or second in time can lead to a true pay as you go model which is a key premise cloud computing. Oracle Enterprise Managers captures very detailed information about the resource usage and stores it in its repository that can be later used for chargeback purposes.

Saturday Sep 17, 2011

Attributes of cloud computing

What really defines a cloud as opposed to running a consolidated system in a private or public accessible network environment are these four characteristics: 1. Provisioning – Dynamic and self-service provisioning. Application provisioning involves deploying applications to your cloud infrastructure with a few mouse clicks. So, when moving to the cloud, application provisioning will be made easier since there are not hundreds or thousands of client machines to deploy too. 2. Metering and chargeback – Metering and chargeback are mechanisms for gathering compute resource usage (metering) and then charging back the user, department, or company for the computing cycle that they consume. In the client/server model, metering and chargeback where not necessary because each user had their own personal computer and typically each department or customer had their own database server. 3. Multi-tenancy – Multitenancy, or running multiple customers or departments on the same central hardware and software infrastructure, is not an issue for client/server applications since each user has her own instance of the application, and most likely each department or customer has its own dedicated database server. In cloud environments, the application, database, and hardware infrastructure are shared among departments or even companies. 4. Elastic – Elasticity refers being able to dynamically provision, migrate, and allocate computing resources to users, departments or customers. It includes the infrastructure to easy set up and ‘tear down’ applications. One of the first areas that customers focus on when moving to the cloud is developer and User Acceptance Testing (UAT) environments. The ability to quick set up a new test environment and then delete it once the testing is done is a cost effective and time saving exercise when done using cloud computing.

Friday Aug 26, 2011

Paper Mills as Data Centers

Be interesting to see if this is a growing trend: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/05/24/google_finland_data_center_video/ Looks like an interesting idea since so many paper mills lay empty. Maybe all the mills in Wisconsin and Maine could be converted. Makes sense since these states have a lot of cold air to use for cooling as well.
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Migrating legacy client/server and mainframe technologies to the Oracle cloud.

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