The Virtualization Practice

Business Agility

Business Agility covers using the technical agility delivered by virtualization and cloud computing to improve business agility, performance and results. This includes the agility derived from the proper implementation of Agile and DevOps methodologies, the agility derived from proper application and system architectures, ...
the agility derived from the proper implementation of Infrastructure as a Server (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS) clouds, the agility derived from proper monitoring of the environment coupled with a process to resolve problems quickly, and the agility derived from have continuous availability through the use of high availability and disaster recovery products and procedures in place.

Small Businesses live by there online presence these days specifically during the holiday shopping season. Many small business also do not have the IT staff to maintain such a presence with the agility required when problems occur. In addition, they may also lack the basic management, networking, security, and storage knowledge to properly maintain this online presence internally, so they move their systems into hosting environments as virtual or physical machines or into the cloud. This begs the question of what service level such SMBs require?

It’s a different way of thinking about the Cloud, where the starting point is not the DataCenter, or the IT service, or the “user”, but the direct delivery of consumer services. Into this vision plays Chromium OS (released to Open Source on November 19th). Google devices delivering Google services (and other services intermediated by Google) from the Cloud to consumers.

XenDesktop’s initial marketing placement caused confusion, the latest release gives a greater flexibility and introduces new innovation. The latest release better provides for a flexible VDI offering – allowing access to XenApp technologies in one per named user license. Yet, depending on your environment – this can be at a hefty cost, massively increasing the license cost in some environments.

Today Citrix announced the release of XenDesktop 4, their next generation Virtual Desktop solution with the promise of being able to deliver a right sized desktop to any user in an organization. Along with 70 enhancements and new features, Citrix is positioning XenDesktop as the most flexible and open architecture solution supporting all types of client devices and hypervisors including Citrix XenServer, Microsoft Hyper-V, VMware ESX and vSphere.

Akamai Technologies, Inc. announce the industry’s first managed Internet service for optimizing delivery of virtualized applications and desktops. Based on Akamai’s IP Application Accelerator solution this new service is designed to help enterprises realize the cost efficiency, scalability and global reach inherent with the Internet to deliver VDI solutions offered by companies such as Citrix, Microsoft, and VMware.

The traditional Enterprise Desktop PC can be said to be on borrowed time. With marketing machines re-heralding the benefits of centralisation removing that Enterprise Desktop PC for Thin Client appears to be a far more prudent use of refresh budgets. While Thin Clients can, and do, replace Enterprise Desktops, there are major considerations to be made in their deployment. Multi-media, local device access, network access and mobile support, through to user acceptance and printing are often overlooked at the start of a project. Focus on understanding where where your costs are now and how you can best use the investment in deploying a Thin Client solution to reduce those costs in the coming years to realise savings on your enterprise workspace spend.

I’ve often written about using change and disruption as a competitive weapon in business, but John Chambers, CEO of Cisco Systems, is the epitome of using change and disruption as a way to gain market share and outrun his competition. As stated in previous articles “change presents opportunities”. The ability to adapt to change is a key advantage in business. To survive, compete, and win, enterprises must adapt. However, because change is often disruptive and expensive, few organizations are prepared to take advantage consistently of the opportunities that change presents. This is not the case with Cisco.