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How Virtualization and the Cloud are Taxing your Network

cloud networksOne of the lessons that many organizations are discovering is that, no matter how things change in the IT world, the more they stay the same. Over the past few years, technologies and strategies revolving around virtualization and cloud computing have become the center of IT’s attention. This is the way it should be, of course; these movements have the potential to save just about any organization significant amounts of capital while greatly increasing service levels. In some cases, however, organizations are caught by surprise when their network can’t handle these new technologies.

Over the past few years, many areas in IT have pushed ahead rather rapidly, while networking has fallen, to some degree, by the wayside. This is due, at least in part, to the fact that networks have become much more reliable over the years. We finally hit a tipping point where it was no longer a struggle to get the bandwidth that we needed from the network, so the focus of IT moved on to bigger and better things, such as virtualization and the cloud. The network was solid enough to support new technologies.

However, now that some of these new technologies are seeing wide adoption, attention needs to be paid to the network again. Virtualization, for example, offers tremendously agile tools such as fast migration and automated provisioning. However, virtual machines need to be able to move across the data center between physical servers at a rapid rate, putting new pressure on the network. As such, there are opportunities to see the kind of automation on the network side that’s already happening on the virtualization side.

Cloud computing has created another situation that network managers need to really pay close attention to. Because IT is able to offload much of its processing power to vendors, there is a new challenge: making sure that their own network integrates flawlessly with cloud vendors. The other area that often needs attention is the ability of the network to handle the incoming side of cloud computing traffic.

Network managers need to be even more concerned today with capacity, monitoring, and performance than they were just three years ago. Virtualization and cloud computing are putting new strains on the network, and you need to be both aware and proactive of the kinds of changes happening to your network, or you may find yourself playing catch-up.

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Unitiv, Inc., is a professional provider of enterprise IT solutions. Unitiv delivers its services from its headquarters in Alpharetta, Georgia, USA, and its regional office in Iselin, New Jersey, USA. Unitiv provides a strategic approach to its service delivery, focusing on three core components: People, Products, and Processes. The People to advise and support customers. The Products to design and build solutions. The Processes to govern and manage post-implementation operations.