Article | October 10, 2023
DApps (sometimes called Dapps) are from the blockchain universe and so, logically, the apps part stands for application (obviously) and the D part stands for decentralised (only obvious once you know that we’re talking distributed immutable language here). According to the guides section at blockgeeks, DApps are open source in terms of code base, incentivised (in terms of who validates it) and essentially decentralised so that all records of the application’s operation must be stored on a public and decentralised blockchain to avoid pitfalls of centralisation. So then, Cartesi is a DApp infrastructure that runs an operating system (OS) on top of blockchains. The company has now launched a more complete ‘platform-level’ offering, which is described as a layer-2 solution
Article | October 3, 2023
As your organization scales, inevitably, so too will its infrastructure needs. From physical spaces to personnel, devices to applications, physical security to cybersecurity – all these resources will continue to grow to meet the changing needs of your business operations.
To manage your changing infrastructure throughout its entire lifecycle, your organization needs to implement a robust infrastructure lifecycle management program that’s designed to meet your particular business needs.
In particular, IT asset lifecycle management (ITALM) is becoming increasingly important for organizations across industries. As threats to organizations’ cybersecurity become more sophisticated and successful cyberattacks become more common, your business needs (now, more than ever) to implement an infrastructure lifecycle management strategy that emphasizes the security of your IT infrastructure.
In this article, we’ll explain why infrastructure management is important. Then we’ll outline steps your organization can take to design and implement a program and provide you with some of the most important infrastructure lifecycle management best practices for your business.
What Is the Purpose of Infrastructure Lifecycle Management?
No matter the size or industry of your organization, infrastructure lifecycle management is a critical process. The purpose of an infrastructure lifecycle management program is to protect your business and its infrastructure assets against risk.
Today, protecting your organization and its customer data from malicious actors means taking a more active approach to cybersecurity. Simply put, recovering from a cyber attack is more difficult and expensive than protecting yourself from one. If 2020 and 2021 have taught us anything about cybersecurity, it’s that cybercrime is on the rise and it’s not slowing down anytime soon.
As risks to cybersecurity continue to grow in number and in harm, infrastructure lifecycle management and IT asset management are becoming almost unavoidable. In addition to protecting your organization from potential cyberattacks, infrastructure lifecycle management makes for a more efficient enterprise, delivers a better end user experience for consumers, and identifies where your organization needs to expand its infrastructure.
Some of the other benefits that come along with comprehensive infrastructure lifecycle management program include:
More accurate planning;
Centralized and cost-effective procurement;
Streamlined provisioning of technology to users;
More efficient maintenance;
Secure and timely disposal.
A robust infrastructure lifecycle management program helps your organization to keep track of all the assets running on (or attached to) your corporate networks. That allows you to catalog, identify and track these assets wherever they are, physically and digitally.
While this might seem simple enough, infrastructure lifecycle management and particularly ITALM has become more complex as the diversity of IT assets has increased. Today organizations and their IT teams are responsible for managing hardware, software, cloud infrastructure, SaaS, and connected device or IoT assets. As the number of IT assets under management has soared for most organizations in the past decade, a comprehensive and holistic approach to infrastructure lifecycle management has never been more important.
Generally speaking, there are four major stages of asset lifecycle management. Your organization’s infrastructure lifecycle management program should include specific policies and processes for each of the following steps:
Planning. This is arguably the most important step for businesses and should be conducted prior to purchasing any assets. During this stage, you’ll need to identify what asset types are required and in what number; compile and verify the requirements for each asset; and evaluate those assets to make sure they meet your service needs.
Acquisition and procurement. Use this stage to identify areas for purchase consolidation with the most cost-effective vendors, negotiate warranties and bulk purchases of SaaS and cloud infrastructure assets. This is where lack of insights into actual asset usage can potentially result in overpaying for assets that aren’t really necessary. For this reason, timely and accurate asset data is crucial for effective acquisition and procurement.
Maintenance, upgrades and repair. All assets eventually require maintenance, upgrades and repairs. A holistic approach to infrastructure lifecycle management means tracking these needs and consolidating them into a single platform across all asset types.
Disposal. An outdated or broken asset needs to be disposed of properly, especially if it contains sensitive information. For hardware, assets that are older than a few years are often obsolete, and assets that fall out of warranty are typically no longer worth maintaining. Disposal of cloud infrastructure assets is also critical because data stored in the cloud can stay there forever.
Now that we’ve outlined the purpose and basic stages of infrastructure lifecycle management, it’s time to look at the steps your organization can take to implement it.
Hyper-Converged Infrastructure, Windows Systems and Network
Article | July 11, 2023
Streamlining operations and maximizing efficiency: Choose the right tools for managing and orchestrating hyper-converged infrastructure to unlock its full potential with Hyperconverged solutions.
Managing and orchestrating hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) is critical to modern IT operations. With the growing adoption of HCI solutions, choosing the right tools for management and orchestration is essential for organizations to optimize their infrastructure and ensure seamless operations. In this article, we will delve into the factors to consider when selecting Hyper-Converged tools for management and orchestration and explore some of the top options available in the market.
1. Symcloud Orchestrator
The Symcloud platform is a webscale solution designed for metal-service automation and orchestration in telecommunications. It enables the automation and management of various network components, including RAN (Radio Access Network), packet core, and MEC (Multi-Access Edge Computing). With Symcloud, businesses can centrally manage large numbers of CNF (Cloud-Native Function) and VNF (Virtual Network function) capable Kubernetes clusters on a single Kubernetes platform. The platform allows for rapid deployment of the entire solution stack in minutes, supporting edge, far edge, and core data centers. Symcloud provides advanced monitoring, planning, and healing capabilities, enabling users to view hardware, software, services, and connectivity dependencies. The architecture of Symcloud Orchestrator combines app-aware storage, virtual networking, and application workflow automation on Kubernetes. Symcloud Storage provides advanced storage and data management capabilities for Kubernetes distributions, seamlessly integrating with native administrative tooling. Symcloud Platform is a Kubernetes infrastructure that supports containers and virtual machines, offering superior performance, features, and flexibility.
Morpheus Data is a comprehensive hybrid cloud management platform that empowers enterprises to manage and modernize their applications while reducing costs and improving efficiency. With Morpheus, businesses can quickly enable on-premises private clouds, centralize access to public clouds, and orchestrate changes with advanced features like cost analytics, governance policies, and automation. It provides a unified view of virtual machines, clouds, containers, and applications in a single location, regardless of the private or public cloud environment. Morpheus offers responsive support from an expert team and features an extensible design. It helps centralize platforms, create private clouds, manage public clouds, and streamline Kubernetes deployments. This tool also enables compliance assurance through simplified authentication, access controls, policies, and security management. By automating application lifecycles, running workflows, and simplifying day-to-day operations, Morpheus helps modernize applications. The platform optimizes cloud costs by inventorying existing resources, right-sizing them, tracking cloud spending, and providing centralized visibility.
3. The Kubernetes Database-as-a-Service Platform
Portworx Data Services is a Kubernetes Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS) platform that offers a single solution for deploying, operating, and managing various data services without being locked into a specific vendor. It simplifies heterogeneous databases' deployment and day-to-day operations, eliminating the need for specialized expertise. With one click, organizations can deploy enterprise-grade data services with built-in capabilities like backup, restore, high availability, data recovery, security, capacity management, and migration. The platform supports a broad catalog of data services, including SQL Server, MySQL, PostgreSQL, MongoDB, Redis, Elasticsearch, Cassandra, Couchbase, Kafka, Consul, RabbitMQ, and ZooKeeper. Portworx Data Services provides a consistent DBaaS experience on any infrastructure, whether on-premises or in the cloud, enabling seamless migration based on evolving business requirements.
DCImanager- a platform for managing multivendor IT infrastructure is a comprehensive platform for providing a unified interface to oversee and control all equipment types, including racks, servers, network devices, PDUs, and virtual networks. It is suitable for servers and data centers of any size, including distributed environments. DCImanager eliminates the need for additional tools and associated maintenance costs, allowing users to work seamlessly with equipment from popular vendors. With DCImanager, users can efficiently manage servers remotely, automate maintenance tasks, monitor power consumption, configure network settings, track inventory, visualize racks, and receive timely notifications. With over 16 years of experience, DCImanager is a reliable solution trusted by thousands of companies worldwide, backed by professional support.
EasyDCIM, a cloud-like bare metal server provisioning is a comprehensive and hassle-free data center administration solution that offers an all-in-one platform for managing daily tasks without requiring multiple software tools. It provides mobility, allowing remote management of data centers from any location and device. The system is highly expandable and customizable, allowing users to tailor the functionality to their needs. EasyDCIM excels in automated bare metal and dedicated server provisioning, streamlining the process from ordering to service delivery. It features a standalone system with a fully customizable admin control panel and user portal. The platform includes advanced data center asset lifecycle tracking, automated OS installation, network auto-discovering, and integration with billing solutions. EasyDCIM's modular architecture enables the easy extension and modification of system components.
Puppet-Infrastructure automation and compliance at enterprise scale offers an automation solution that allows businesses to manage and automate complex workflows using reusable blocks of self-healing infrastructure as code. With model-driven and task-based configuration management, organizations can quickly deploy infrastructure to meet their evolving needs at any scale. By automating the entire infrastructure lifecycle, Puppet increases operational efficiency, eliminates silos, reduces response time, and streamlines change management. Puppet's automated policy enforcement ensures continuous compliance and a secure posture, enabling the identification, reporting, and resolution of errors while enforcing the desired state across the infrastructure. Leveraging the vibrant Puppet community, users can benefit from pre-built content and workflows, accelerating their deployment. With deep DevOps and enterprise experience, Puppet is a trusted advisor, assisting the largest enterprise customers in rethinking and redefining their IT management practices.
Foreman is a robust lifecycle management tool designed for system administrators to manage physical and virtual servers efficiently. With Foreman, tasks can be automated, applications can be deployed quickly, and server management becomes proactive. It supports a wide range of providers, enabling hybrid cloud management. The tool includes features such as external node classification, Puppet and Salt configuration monitoring, and comprehensive host monitoring. Its CLI, Hammer, offers easy access to API calls for streamlined data center management. With RBAC and LDAP integration, audits, and a pluggable architecture, Foreman provides a powerful solution for server provisioning, configuration management, and monitoring.
HCI choosing the right tools for management and orchestration is paramount for organizations seeking to optimize their operations and achieve greater efficiency. Businesses can make informed decisions and select tools that align with their specific needs by considering factors such as scalability, automation capabilities, integration, and vendor support. Whether leveraging vendor-provided solutions or opting for third-party tools, the key is ensuring that the chosen tools enable effective management and orchestration of the HCI environment, allowing organizations to unlock the full potential of their infrastructure and drive business success.
As HCI continues to gain prominence, selecting the appropriate Hyper-Converged tools for management and orchestration becomes crucial for organizations aiming to streamline operations and maximize the benefits of their infrastructure investment. By carefully evaluating the available options, considering key factors, and aligning with business requirements, organizations can make informed decisions that optimize their HCI environment and enable them to adapt to the evolving needs of their digital infrastructure.
IT Systems Management
Article | August 8, 2022
Consider IaaS (infrastructure as a service) as a virtual version of your traditional data center. IaaS is a branch of cloud computing technology that offers virtualized storage, server, and networking wrapped together as a self-service platform. It is highly cost-efficient and makes up for easier, faster workloads. Although incredibly convenient for business, it largely depends on what your company needs to use it for.
What is IaaS, and How Can It Benefit Your Business?
IaaS first rose to popularity in the early 2010s. Since then, it has become the standard abstraction model for many types of workloads. But with the rise of the microservices application pattern and the arrival of new technologies like containers and serverless IaaS is still a foundational service, but the field is more crowded than ever.
The most common household cloud computing names—AWS (Amazon Web Services), Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure— are all IaaS providers. They all maintain giant data centers around the globe. It includes tons of storage systems, physical servers, and networking equipment under a virtualization layer. Cloud customers access these resources to deploy and run applications in a highly automated manner.
Developing a cloud adoption strategy is a vital step forward for modern-day business. And this subscription-based cloud computing service, IaaS, offers a remote management solution and reduces your purchase cost at the same time.
Additionally, IaaS also provides key solutions vital for any company’s future plans, such as big-data analysis. It allows businesses like yours to analyze massive data sets and see future trends, patterns, and associations that a human wouldn’t.
Understanding the IaaS Architecture
In an IaaS service model, your cloud provider will take over your infrastructure components, such as traditional on-premises data centers and host them on the internet. This includes virtual computing, servers, networking hardware, and infrastructure components, as well as the hypervisor layer.
IaaS service providers will also provide a wide array of services to accompany those infrastructure components.
IaaS services are automated and highly policy-driven, so you can implement all your infrastructure tasks effortlessly.
How Does It Work?
IaaS customers access their resources through a WAN (wide area network). Leveraging the cloud provider's services, they will install the remaining elements of an application stack.
For example, you can log in to the IaaS platform to create VMs (virtual machines), install operating systems on each VM, deploy middleware like databases, create storage buckets for workloads and backups, and install the enterprise workload on that VM. Afterward, you can also use the IaaS provider's services to track costs, balance network traffic, monitor performance, troubleshoot application-related issues and manage disaster recovery.
IaaS Use Cases
As IaaS provides general-purpose computing resources, it can be used for any kind of use case. IaaS is most often used today for the development and testing environments, websites, and web apps that interact with customers, data storage, analytics, and data warehousing workloads. Plus, it also offers backup and disaster recovery services, especially for on-premises workloads. IaaS is also a good way to set up and run common business software and apps like SAP.
GE Healthcare: Reputed medical imaging facility GE Healthcare adopted Amazon EC2 from AWS to design the GE Health Cloud. GE Health Cloud platform successfully empowered its consumers by collecting, storing, accessing, and processing information worldwide from different types of medical devices to obtain value from data.
Coca-Cola: The beverage giant Coca-Cola collaborated with SoftLayer adopting a pay-as-you-go architecture to manage their CRM system effectively during peak seasons.
Before choosing a provider, you will need to think carefully about the services, reliability, and costs. First, you should thoroughly assess the capabilities of your organization’s IT department and determine how well equipped it is to deal with the ongoing demands of IaaS implementation. Accordingly, you will be prepared to choose an alternative provider and move to the alternative infrastructure if you need to.