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As Your Organization Embraces Cloud 2.0, Don’t Forget the WAN

As Your Organization Embraces Cloud 2.0, Don’t Forget the WAN

Cloud computing has evolved from being a buzzword to real usage among enterprises. A 2015 Frost & Sullivan cloud user survey captured some of the adoption trends and the results are impressive (with important implications with regard to network services; more on that shortly). In the survey, 55% of the respondents indicated they currently use public Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) services.¹ However, what stood out are the familiarity and adoption trends the survey results depicted for hosted private cloud and “bare-metal” cloud services.²

Fifty-one percent of the survey respondents stated they are currently using hosted private cloud; while 32% indicated that, they are currently using bare-metal cloud. Exhibit 1 depicts the adoption across various cloud services by US businesses:

Exhibit 1

Ex1

Further probing of the survey responses indicates that cloud adoption will not slow down in the near future. Sixty-two percent of the survey respondents indicated that they expect their usage to increase significantly (more than 50%) for public IaaS services; while 57% expect to significantly increase their use of hosted private IaaS services.

Welcome, Cloud 2.0!

The new cloud era – Cloud 2.0 – involves a tightly integrated hybrid environment consisting of multiple deployment models, including managed hosting, virtualization, bare-metal cloud, on-premises private cloud, hosted private cloud, public cloud and software as a services (SaaS). It puts these heterogeneous types of environments at the fingertips of IT managers, so they can choose the best-suited option to respond quickly and effectively to business needs.

In the 2015 cloud survey, 37% of the respondents stated they are currently using hybrid cloud.³ The hybrid cloud of the Cloud 2.0 era promises optimal IT efficiency, with each workload or component deployed in the environment that delivers the best combination of price, performance, and security.

Network is an Integral Part of Cloud 2.0 Era

Cloud-based services shift the IT spending model from capital expenditure to operational expenditure, wherein the IT department can deploy IT resources in an on-demand manner, as and when the need arises. Cloud also eliminates the need for in-house maintenance of IT infrastructure, thus freeing up IT team’s time to focus on building solutions that add value to business. The cost savings in terms of infrastructure and personnel are huge, and every enterprise wants to take advantage of it.

However, as hybrid clouds evolve, and your enterprise applications are distributed across various deployment models, one might ask, would you rather trust the best-effort public Internet to move workloads or should you evaluate private and hybrid wide area networks (WANs) that promise application performance and security for the applications?

For example, would your organization be comfortable with users accessing ERP applications over the public Internet? Even though the application itself could be in a hosted private cloud, you need to know if the networks connecting users to the application moving data back and forth are secure and will provide the performance required.

Additional questions to consider might include:

  • How do you ensure there are no packet losses or latency in transmitting your data?
  • How do you ensure your corporate data is not subject to security breaches, such as Distributed Denial of Service or Intrusion by harmful elements?
  • Are there service level agreements associated with your WAN to ensure network performance?
  • In short, how do you ensure your data is as secure as it was while in your data center?

It is high time enterprises evaluated cloud and networks together to ensure a secure end-to-end solution. Meaning, not only secure the cloud but also secure the networks that connect users to the cloud.

Part II of this post looks at private cloud connectivity solutions that can address the security concerns associated with public Internet.

Image Credit: pcmag.com

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The Role of High Performance WAN in
Enterprise Cloud Transformation

A Frost & Sullivan Executive Brief Sponsored by EarthLink

Guest blog post by Roopa Honnachari from Frost & Sullivan, a global consulting firm and a strategic partner to EarthLink. They work with clients to leverage visionary innovation that addresses the global challenges and related growth opportunities that will make or break today’s market participants. This is the first in two-part series on cloud connectivity.

About Roopa Honnachari

Roopa Honnachari
Our guest blogger is Roopa Honnachari of Frost & Sullivan. Roopa leads the Business Communication Services practice at Frost & Sullivan. She is an authority in the wholesale and business network services space, with 14 years of experience spanning market research, growth consulting, and technical marketing in the communication services industry. She monitors market developments in the wholesale and retail network services (MPLS VPN, Ethernet, Waves, etc.), managed network services and cloud networking.