Cloud Computing Implementation Road-Map

Step 1- Determine the Bad and Good “Candidates” for the Cloud

First, start by taking a broad look at the applications and other IT resources and systems under your “control” (both existing ones and planned ones); categorize them into mission-critical (i.e., if it goes offline your company will not “survive”) and non-mission-critical. Both mission-critical and non-mission-critical can be further sub-categorized into core business practices (those that provide competitive differentiation) and non-core practices (typically internal activities such as HR services, etc.)

Then apply the following rules of thumb:

1. If mission-critical and non-core, then the application is a good candidate for deployment in the public clouds
2
. If mission-critical and core, then definitely keep it behind the firewall (you may choose to put them in a private cloud or non-cloud)
3
. If non-mission-critical and non-core, then deploy in the public clouds
4. If on-mission-critical and core, then it's a good idea to keep it behind the firewall (you may choose to put it in a private cloud or non-cloud)

With these rule of thumb in mind let's take a look at some more considerations of good and bad candidates for Public Clouds.


Good candidates for the Public Clouds:

Applications that are used by a group of mobile workers to manage their time and activity (like sales support and field service support applications, e-mail, etc.);
• Software development environments;
Applications that require system hardware or software not normally used by your company's IT operations (you can save money on IT infrastructures that you don't use often);
• Applications that are run infrequently but require significant computing resources when run, like test and pre-production systems;
• Companies who want to have backup for critical applications are good candidates for both public and private cloud computing;
• Companies that have distributed server locations and data centers (you may be able to make more efficient use of servers and storage, lowering equipment costs, and also support your IT investment more efficiently);


Bad candidates for the Public Clouds:

Applications that involve extremely sensitive data, particularly where there is a regulatory or legal risk involved in any disclosure, will require special treatment if they are to be run on a public cloud (get legal advice before committing any applications of this type to public cloud computing);
• Applications that require access to very intensive data workloads (for example, loading the database onto the cloud may be costly) as well as any performance-sensitive application (i.e., one that is very likely to create performance problems if it is to run on a public cloud)
• Applications that require high customization (e.g., customized SaaS)

You should conduct a feasibility study that engages legal, risk, and compliance officers to determine if cloud computing is appropriate with respect to laws and regulations your business is subject to.



Step 2 - Prepare Your IT portfolio for the Cloud

Second, prepare your IT portfolio for the cloud (can be somewhere in between cloud services and installed applications).

This could be anything from new assets, to the redeployment of certain existing assets or a complete rewrite of some existing applications (remember not all your current applications are Cloud-enabled: Service Oriented Architecture and Virtualized applications are better candidates) taking always in account the security, audit and compliance systems requirements, as discussed earlier in the “Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks” section. And of course if you take an insecure application to the Cloud (either public or private), it won't become automatically secure!

Next you need to find a vendor that meets those security, legal, and compliance requirements.



Step 3 - Key Questions to Ask Cloud Computing Providers


While reading this section, keep in mind that the exact security measures don’t need to be fully described by the Cloud Providers (nor should they, otherwise they may have security problems themselves) but the degree of security provided needs to be stated, then audited by you or by a trustworthy third party, so that you can be sure that the provider is doing what it claims to be doing.

These are some of the questions you should have answers to regarding your Cloud Computing providers, so that you can be confident that they are secure, collaboratively enabled, and compliant with applicable regulations:

Where is my data and who has access to it? The provider’s access control and authentication procedures should be reviewed, and companies should find out if third parties have access to the information
How is data being protected? Ask to review the service provider’s architecture to make sure proper data segregation is available; review their data leak prevention (DLP) deployment to prevent insider attacks; review the vendor’s data protection techniques to ensure appropriate cryptography is used for both data in rest and in motion; and make sure the appropriate documentation is available for auditors.
Will you maintain the features we contracted? And what are the penalties?
• What's customer support like?
How can I ensure that my data and the cloud services will continue to be available, in the event of the provider’s bankruptcy or change in business direction?
What's the exit strategy?

Some links to information about Cloud Platforms, Providers and Enablers:

• List of Cloud Platforms, Providers, and Enablers: http://groups.google.ca/group/cloud-computing/web/list-of-cloud-platforms-providers-and-enablers
• An A to Z of Cloud Computing Companies in 2009: http://virtualization.sys-con.com/node/770174
• Research, Companies, Key Players and Platforms: http://www.cloudviews.org/2009/07/cloud-computing-briefings-about-research-companies-key-players-and-platforms/


Step 4 - Test, Deploy, Monitor and Measure ROI

One of the major benefits of Cloud Computing is the ability to test a concept relatively quickly and easily. Before making the final decision either to deploy or not to deploy (production phase) to the Cloud, you should perform full cloud integration tests. This may seem like a lot of work, but it's worthwhile because when you move a system into the cloud, you introduce a range of new variables that are beyond your experience and direct control, such as security, performance, etc.

Finally you should have monitoring systems so that you can measure the performance, as also continuing to measure the ROI. And remember this effort also takes extra time, capital, and human capital resources.


In the next article, I will give some more recommendations and also present a kind of summary of all the previous articles:

- Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's
- Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?
- Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...?
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?
- What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks? (Part 1: Cloud Security Advantages!)
- Cloud Computing Challenges and the Delicate Balance Between Risks and Benefits (Part 2 of 2)
- Real-World Cloud Computing Applications


Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

Real-World Cloud Computing Applications

In this article, we will see some examples of real-world Cloud Computing applications:

• Coca-Cola Enterprises uses a Cloud-based system to streamline operations with
merchandisers in the field: http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/09_24/b4135048953042.htm

• Nasdaq uses Amazon’s S3 Cloud Service to deliver historical stock and mutual fund information, rather than add the load to its own database and computing infrastructure: http://www.infoworld.com/d/cloud-computing/early-experiments-in-cloud-computing-020

• Animoto, a small start-up which decided to use Amazon's Cloud Services, was able to keep up with soaring demand for its service and scale up from 50 instances to 3,500 instances over a three day period: http://www.idgconnect.com/index.cfm?event=showarticle&cid=116&pk=970

• Times wanted to place scanned images covering a 60-year period (15 million news stories) online. After being repeatedly turned down by the CIO for the use of six servers, the newspaper moved four terabytes into Amazon’s S3, ran all the software over a weekend on EC2 for $25, and then launched its product in a matter of minutes: http://queue.acm.org/detail.cfm?id=1554608

• Mogulus streams 120,000 live TV channels over the Internet and owns no hardware except for the laptops it uses. It handled all of the election coverage for most of the large media sites. Its CEO states that he could not be in business without IaaS: http://queue.acm.org/detail.cfm?id=1551646

• How the pharmaceutical company EliLilly saved more than $1 billion by using IaaS Amazon Web Services:http://blog.mariaspinola.com/2009/10/why-large-public-and-private-sector.html


In the next article, we will see a possible road-map that will help you determine the bad and good “Candidates” for the Cloud, because not all applications can be in the Cloud!


Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola


P.S. Also see:
- Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's
- Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?
- Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...?
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?
- What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks? (Part 1: Cloud Security Advantages!)
- Cloud Computing Challenges and the Delicate Balance Between Risks and Benefits (Part 2 of 2)

Cloud Computing Challenges and the Delicate Balance Between Risks and Benefits (Part 2 of 2)

In the previous article we looked at some Cloud Security Advantages.

Now let's now look at some Cloud Challenges.

Cloud Challenges

Trusting vendor’s security model
• Customer inability to respond to audit findings
• Obtaining support for investigations
Indirect administrator accountability
Proprietary implementations can’t be examined
Loss of physical control; Data dispersal and international privacy laws
• Need for isolation management
• Multi-tenancy
• Logging challenges
Data ownership issues
• Quality of service guarantees
• Dependence on secure hypervisors
Attraction to hackers (high value target)
• Possibility for massive outages
• Encryption needs for cloud computing

Let's look depper into a few of the major concerns.


How can you be sure your Data is Safe?

Data safety in the cloud is not a trivial concern. Some online storage vendors such as The Linkup and Carbonite have lost data, and were unable to recover it for customers.

Secondly, there are data access governance concerns, because there is the danger that sensitive data could fall into the wrong hands, either as a result of people having more privileges than required to do the job or by accidental or intentional misuse of the privileges they were assigned to do their job.

For example, how can you be sure that Cloud providers (especially external providers) apply the right patches, workarounds, access restriction, isolates systems in a secure way? How can you be sure that they are doing what they are meant to do (no more and no less)? Who establishes, maintains and checks audit trails (assuming they are being done in the first place)?

Data segregation is another major concern, because in the cloud your data is typically in a shared environment alongside with data from other customers. Find out what is done to segregate data, besides encryption.


Ensuring Compliance in the Cloud

When it comes to compliance, more questions arise than answers!
For example, if you have customer data in the cloud (files, documents, emails, memos, scanned images, etc.) what controls are available to ensure compliance with your published privacy policies and with the privacy and freedom of information regulations in all of the countries where you do business? Where does liability falls in the case of law suits?


Monitoring SLA's and Contracts

Before choosing a cloud vendor, due diligence is necessary by thorough examination of the Service-Level Agreements (SLA's) to understand what they guarantee and what they don’t. In addition, scour through any publicly accessible availability data. Amazon, for example, maintains a "Service Health Dashboard" that shows current and historical up-time status of its various services.

Regarding the level of performance, there will always be some network latency with a cloud service, possibly making it slower than an application that runs in your local data center. But thirdparty vendors, such as RightScale, are building services on top of the cloud to make sure applications can scale and perform well.

But even when SLA's are set and contracts are signed, there are some concerns that should not be ignored. For example, who is responsible for monitoring, auditing and enforcing the SLA's? Or if security is breached or audits fail, who is responsible for measuring and reporting those breaches? What liability for your business is there in the case of a breach of the SLA?

Since the Cloud Service consumer has no visibility inside the cloud, the only option is to trust the provider. Until an independent entity arises that performs those verifications, providers have little or no incentive to admit fault.


Integration with Your Legacy Systems

Of course you are not going to rely entirely on the Cloud, far from it. Therefore, there will be plenty of integration work integrating Cloud Applications with your Legacy Systems, as well as securing the applications as they move around the cloud and your legacy systems.


Can Applications Move From One Cloud to Another?

Yes, but that doesn't mean it will be easy, because there are two main issues here: interoperability and migration cost policies.

Regarding interoperability, Cloud vendors will have to adopt standards-based technologies in order to ensure true interoperability. The recently released "Open Cloud Manifesto" supports interoperability of data and applications, while the Open Cloud Consortium is promoting open frameworks that will let clouds operated by different entities work seamlessly together. The goal is to move applications from one cloud to another without having to rewrite them.

However, there are two sides to this coin: the massive capital investments Cloud Computing providers have made in their data centers, on hardware and software, on highly qualified personnel and so on, will not be generating revenue if customers leave, so customers may incur switching and migration costs.

Another reason this concern is very important is if your Cloud provider disappears, as happened with the provider Coghead:

“Then, on Feb. 18, 2009, came the death knell, in an e-mail to customers announcing Coghead was ending its cloud-based development platform service immediately "due to the impact of economic challenges." ERP giant SAP bought Coghead's intellectual property but pulled the plug on the development platform, giving customers until April 30 to retrieve their applications and data.

It took about 4.5 person-months for Shockey, founder and principal of Hekademia
Consulting, to port his CRM application from Coghead to Intuit's QuickBase database.
While he's philosophical about the forced migration, it's a stark reminder of how quickly a cloud vendor can go under.”

(source:
http://www.itworld.com/saas/66657/what-do-if-your-cloud-provider-disappears)



The Delicate Balance Between Risks and Benefits

Keep in mind that before moving to the cloud (as with any emerging technology and businessmodel) the most important aspect is that you know your team, know your solutions, and know the Cloud providers.

The decision to move to the cloud should involve at minimum enterprise architects, developers, product owners/stakeholders, IT leadership, and outsourcing teams.

Take into account that human capital in your organization may be lacking, because exploring new models requires an adventurous spirit and technical astuteness, and if your team is not willing to stretch and learn new things, Cloud Computing can be very frustrating. Also consider the chance that some of your team elements, may think (and with some reason) that Cloud Computing may place their jobs at risk.

Some business managers are simply too scared to move forward with Cloud initiatives! However, this concern, while valid, is not insurmountable. Solutions do exist and are being finetuned every day.

There are countless examples of successful Cloud Computing implementations, and that's what we will see at next article.

Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola


P.S. Also see:
- Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's
- Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?
- Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...?
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?
- What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks? (Part 1: Cloud Security Advantages!)

What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks? (Part 1: Cloud Security Advantages!)

Perhaps by now, after you have read the:

- Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's
- Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?
- Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...?
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?



you may be asking the following questions, among many others:

Where is my data?
• How does my data securely enter and exit the cloud?
How is my data protected in transit?
Who has access to my data?
• Who is accountable if something goes wrong?
• What’s the disaster recovery plan, including response to a pandemic?
• How to comply with Export and Privacy laws?
• Will my data disappear when my online storage site shuts down?
What happens if my cloud provider disappears?
How is the environment monitored for OS / DB / application failures and how are we notified?
How is the data protected and secured from theft and damage? Encrypted? and how are the
encryption keys rotated and managed?
• How easy is it to integrate with existing in-house IT?
• Does the system have enough customization capabilities to suit my needs?
Will on-demand cost more? What is the sweet-spot to consider when weighing Cloud vs inhouse?
• How difficult is it to migrate back to an in-house system? Is it even possible?
• Are there any regulatory requirements on my business that can prevent me from using the cloud?

You are not alone, as you can see by the results of the following poll:





Permission to use image provided by Frank Gens - http://blogs.idc.com/ie/


And let's start with probably the biggest one:

Security Issues in Cloud Computing Environments (Advantages and Challenges)

Research showed that the most common concern about implementing Cloud programs was security and privacy, a finding supported by an IDC study of 244 CIO's on Cloud Computing where 75% of respondents listed Security as their number one concern.

"With services such as Google's SaaS, data loss is less likely because the information is accessible from anywhere and anytime without saving it to an easily lost or stolen USB stick or CD" (Eran Feigenbaum, director of security for Google Apps)

Most organizations pay extraordinary attention and devote considerable resources to IT security, but that doesn't mean that their data is any more or less secure. The reality is that many attacks come from a lack of timely software update management and server misconfiguration. And the likelihood of such issues occurring (at least as frequently) is greatly reduced in the Cloud, where security-patching process is more streamlined than in a typical enterprise: vendors, servers and software architecture tend to be more homogeneous, and due to economies of scale, there is staff dedicated to security, ensuring application of the latest security patches.

In addition, the larger Cloud providers tend to have a better grasp of threats, because these people deal with security issues at more complex levels than your own IT team sees on a daily basis.


Let's look at some Cloud Security Advantages before looking to the Security Challenges:


Cloud Security Advantages

• Data fragmentation and dispersal are held by Unbiased Party (cloud vendor assertion); in fact,
shifting public data to an external cloud reduces the exposure of the internal sensitive data
Survey says that more than one-third of IT professionals abuse administrative passwords to access confidential data (in
http://www.internetnews.com/breakingnews/article.php/3824296)
• Cloud homogeneity makes security auditing/testing simpler
Dedicated Security Team
• Rapid Re-Constitution of Services
• Greater Investment in Security Infrastructure (Real-Time Detection of System Tampering; Low- Cost Disaster Recovery and Data Storage Solutions, Hypervisor Protection Against Network Attacks)
1 In 5 Companies Cutting IT Security Spending in 2009 (in
http://www.informationweek.com/news/storage/security/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=218100139&cid=RSSfeed_IWK_All )
• Simplification of Compliance Analysis
• On-Demand Security Controls


However, that doesn't mean you should blindly assume instant security when you opt for a services provider. Verify the Cloud provider procedures, even if that provider has security certifications.

So, in the next article we will look at some Cloud Security Challenges.


Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

P.S. Also see:
- Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's
- Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?
- Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...?
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?


Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?

Cloud Computing gives you access to completely different levels of scale and economics in terms of the ability to scale very rapidly and to operate IT systems more cost-effectively than previously possible, as we can see by the results of the following poll:




We can say that the three main categories of benefits are:

1. delivery of service (faster time-to-value and time-to-market)
2. reduction of cost (CapEx vs. OpEx tradeoff and costs that are more competitive)
3. IT department transformation (focus on innovation vs. maintenance & implementation)

During economic downturns, the ability to speed up time-to-value and time-to-market becomes more critical than ever, and represents probably the most important benefit of the Cloud. Many companies are delaying projects unless they deliver a return on investment within weeks. With Cloud Computing, companies can speed up those times, because of the following benefits:

No upfront capital investments and less financial risk (allows companies to shift from capital to operational expenses, which also means better cash flow and a more competitive business); no more upfront huge capital investments on on-premise infrastructure (applications, servers, network, maintenance, licenses, hardware, facilities, etc.) with uncertain payoff and that may never be needed. After all, what if the benefits don't materialize? Too bad, the money's been spent! With Cloud Computing, you only pay for what you use when you need it and you can terminate the contract.

• Offers improved agility to deploy solutions (instead of taking months or weeks, now you just need days or hours) and choice between vendors (particularly when cloud interoperability becomes more of a reality than it is today)


Reduces the headaches of integrating and maintaining servers, storage & software, and eliminates mundane IT management tasks from skilled staff, leaving those tasks as the responsibility of the Cloud dedicated specialists. This allows your staff to concentrate on what they are skilled at, and to focus on things that drive the business: service innovation, in other words, rather than the drudgery of maintaining server uptime, installing yet another software upgrade, or adding yet another user account.


• Cloud computing also offers an on-ramp for your IT staff to recent computing advances such as non-relational databases, new languages, and new computing frameworks.

• Cloud Computing can lower IT barriers to innovation and increase interoperability between disjoint technologies


CLOUD COMPUTING: PAY FOR INNOVATION, NOT INFRASTRUCTURE ...

Maybe the best way to understand all these benefits is by giving an example:


Cloud Computing Benefits Example (IaaS)


Consider a researcher at a pharmaceutical company that needs to analyze a lot of data fast. If the results turn out as expected, the company could have a world-class success (and high profits) on its hands. But 25 servers are needed to crunch the huge volume of data!

• Scenario without Cloud Computing: wait until the purchase request is approved, wait until the servers arrive, wait until the servers are configured, etc. all of which can take several weeks or even several months. Let's say it takes three months. In an industry where the cost of delaying a product is estimated at $150 per second, that three months' wait would cost more than $1 billion.

• Scenario with Cloud Computing: the researcher clicks over to Amazon Web Services, configures the 25 servers in the Cloud in one hour, and within two hours has crunched the data. Total fee for the time using Amazon’s resources? Just $89.

Just a note: this isn't an imaginary example! This really happened at pharmaceutical company EliLilly, as you can see at:
http://searchsecurity.techtarget.com/magazineFeature/0,296894,sid14_gci1349671,00.html
Although this is a real-world example, there were some concerns about security and SLAs(Service Level Agreements) that Eli Lilly faced, such as: "How could they prove there was no trace of their data left in the Amazon Cloud? They had to take Amazon's word for it", and that's what we will address in the following sections.

IF ALL OF YOUR IT INFRASTRUCTURE (APPLICATIONS, DATA, SERVERS, ETC.) COULD BE MOVED 100% TO PUBLIC CLOUD MODEL, YOUR BUSINESS WOULDN'T NEED TO BUY ANY MORE HARDWARE, ANY MORE SOFTWARE, OR HIRE ANY ADDITIONAL IT STAFF.



So if Cloud Computing is all that, why isn't every business using Cloud Computing?

Well, because there are some risks – some major ones – and inherent challenges such as: the security of the enterprise data that is stored in the cloud, the risk of lock-in to cloud platform vendors, loss of control over cloud resources that are run and managed by someone else, reliability, governance, performance, human capital, compliance, integration with legacy systems. Some of these risks still don't have a industry-wide solution.

And that's what we will see in the next article: "What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks?"

In the nexts articles, I will cover the followings points:

- What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks?
- Real-World Cloud Computing Applications
- Cloud Computing Enterprise Implementation Road-Map

Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

P.S. Also see:
- Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's
- Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?
- Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...?
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?

What Exactly is Cloud Computing?

In the prevous article Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...? I made the following statement:

"SaaS is one of the three possible Cloud Computing delivery modes; however, to be considered Cloud Computing, any of those delivery modes must have certain specific characteristics"

So, in this article we will look at those specific characteristics that define exactly what is Cloud Computing, so that next time you will be able to evaluate if a specific offer is truly Cloud Computing, or simply a pre-existing offering that has the Cloud label slapped on it.


We can state that Cloud Computing allows business to increase IT capacity (or add capabilities) on the fly and in real time (Internet-enabled), without investing in new infrastructure, training new personnel or licensing new software, and as a pay-per-use service.

However, the above definition is not complete. Here is the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) simplified version of Cloud Computing:


The five characteristics:

On-demand self-service: individuals can set themselves up without needing anyone’s help;
Ubiquitous network access: available through standard Internet-enabled devices;
Location independent resource pooling: processing and storage demands are balanced across a common infrastructure with no particular resource assigned to any individual user;
Rapid elasticity: consumers can increase or decrease capacity at will;
Pay per use: consumers are charged fees based on their usage of a combination of computing power, bandwidth use and/or storage



The possible delivery models:

Cloud Software as a Service (SaaS): Customers rent software hosted by the vendor;
Cloud Platform as a Service (PaaS): Customers rent infrastructure and programming tools hosted by the vendor to create their own applications;
Cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): Customers rent processing, storage,networking and other fundamental computing resources for all purposes.



The possible deployment models:

Private cloud: The cloud infrastructure is owned or leased by a single organization and is operated solely for that organization.
Community cloud: The cloud infrastructure is shared by several organizations and supports a specific community that has shared concerns (e.g., mission, security requirements, policy, and compliance considerations).
Public cloud: The cloud infrastructure is owned by an organization selling cloud services to the general public or to a large industry group.
Hybrid cloud: The cloud infrastructure is a composition of two or more clouds (internal, community, or public) that remain unique entities but are bound together by standardized or proprietary technology).




Here is a chart (created by http://twitter.com/adowbor) that provides a visual summary of NIST working definition of cloud computing:








Note: Private Clouds are also known as Internal Clouds, and Public Clouds as External Clouds.

We can summarize the NIST definition by saying that Cloud Computing is nothing more than a service model where business workloads such as software applications (SaaS), and/or Platforms (PaaS) such as programming tools, and/or Infrastructures (IaaS) such as processing, storage, networking, etc., are used in accordance with the following characteristics:


1. services are provisioned quickly without requiring excessive administrative intervention on the part of the end user’s organization
2. usage of a shared resource model (pool of virtualized resources) to support a cost-effective pricing structure (only pay what you consume), either housed locally within the four walls of the your data center (Private Cloud) or outside the data center at a secondary site or third party hosting facility (Public Cloud)
3. providing self-service interfaces that let customers acquire resources at any time and get rid of them the instant they are no longer needed.


A TRUE CLOUD ABSTRACTS THE UNDERLYING HARDWARE FROM THE BUYER, IS ELASTIC IN SCALING TO DEMAND AND BILLS BUYERS ON A PAY-PER-USE BASIS.


Although the right Cloud Computing definition is important, concentrate on what Cloud Computing does for your business: it provides a way to increase capacity or add capabilities on the fly without investing in new infrastructure, training new personnel, or licensing new software, and you only pay what you “consume”.


In the nexts articles, I will cover the followings points:
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?
- What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks?
- Real-World Cloud Computing Applications- Cloud Computing Enterprise Implementation Road-Map

Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

P.S. Also see:
- Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's
- Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?
- Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...?

Cloud Equals SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting...?

With virtually every vendor/provider on the planet jumping on the Cloud Computing bandwagon, sometimes it's difficult to tell whether a service is truly a Cloud Computing offering or simply a pre-existing offering that has the Cloud label slapped on it, such as hosting, outsourcing, ASP (Application Service Provider), On Demand Computing, Grid computing, Utility computing, SaaS (Software as a Service) and so on.

In fact, Cloud Computing is not a technology revolution, but rather a process and business evolution on how we use those technologies that enables Cloud Computing as it exists today: SaaS, inexpensive storage, REST, AJAX, SOA(service-oriented architectures), On Demand Computing, Grid Computing, Utility Computing, virtualization, etc.

The issue is that many providers of those technologies hijacked the term Cloud Computing, and it is this confusion that discredits the entire industry; if everyone is doing "Cloud", then in a sense, no one is doing it. The advantages the cloud are supposed to deliver become dissipated in the mist of confusion, deception, deceit and disillusionment.

Consider the following analogy: any example of franchising is a business, however not all businesses are franchises; this line of reasoning can be applied to Cloud Computing: while some SaaS offerings are Cloud, that doesn't make all SaaS offerings Cloud services.

Just a quick note about the last statement: SaaS is one of the three possible Cloud Computing delivery modes; however, to be considered Cloud Computing, any of those delivery modes must have certain specific characteristics (as you will see in the next article - "What is Cloud Computing?")

For all of the above reasons, it's important to define what is really Cloud Computing because there is definitely promise of value, despite all the hype and confusion.


In the nexts articles, I will cover the followings points:
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?
- What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks?
- Real-World Cloud Computing Applications- Cloud Computing Enterprise Implementation Road-Map

Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

P.S. Also see Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's
and Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?

Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?

Business managers know that in spite of the benefits of every new technology/business model, there are also risks and issues like trust, loss of privacy, regulatory violation, data replication, coherency and erosion of integrity, application sprawl, and dependencies, among others.

Therefore they realize that rushing things when it comes to Cloud Computing can be a very bad decision. However, ignoring Cloud Computing all together, because of a belief in your ability to secure your own environment better than a service provider ever could, or jumping rapidly into it because the many claims made about Cloud Computing have led you to the point of "irrational exuberance" and unrealistic expectations, isn't smart either.

This following articles will contain useful information even if your company (either private company or public organization) has already decided not to use Cloud Computing in the near future. It is likely that unbeknownst to you, some of your departments are already using Cloud Computing, and you will need to define a Cloud Governance Program and make it available to all your internal customers.

For instance, if your company has an IT department, one must agree that it is very tempting for software developers, pressed to demonstrate a proof of concept, to use a Cloud Computing service provider and configure the servers there (in minutes or hours), instead of waiting days or months for new server acquisitions to be approved, delivered, set up by IT, have the network configured, and so on.

Or maybe it is your sales department that decides to go to a Cloud Computing service provider and start using their Cloud Computing CRM immediately, instead of waiting months to have an onpremise CRM program, and you will only become aware of this initiative when they ask to integrate it with the billing and finance programs.

After all, all they need is a credit card (if the cost is low it may well be within the discretionary budget of the department, and in some situations not even a credit card is required because some Cloud offerings are free), to start using any Cloud Computing service immediately, and in true agile fashion, instead of asking permission to use it, they may be asking you for forgiveness after they have already done so...

Also, a relatively young company, without a huge IT infrastructure, will tend to move more quickly to the Cloud, be able to enter and build new "markets" more rapidly, and thus achieve competitive advantages over more traditional businesses.

And this last paragraph, made me remember the following "analogy":

Two guys are swimming in the ocean when they notice a shark and one guy takes off swimming towards the boat, while the other says, "What are you doing? We can't swim faster than a shark", the other replies, "I don't need to swim faster than a shark, just faster than you." (source Einstein, Sharks and Clouds)


In the nexts articles, I will try to explain the followings points:
- Cloud Computing Equals to SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting?
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?
- What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks?
- Real-World Cloud Computing Applications
- Cloud Computing Enterprise Implementation Road-Map

Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

P.S. Also see http://blog.mariaspinola.com/2009/08/cloud-computing-in-plain-english-to-it.html

Cloud Computing News: Week 10 to 16 Aug 2009

This list is a summary of Cloud Computing news that I posted during the past week on Twitter:


- Putting the Cloud Before the Horse http://bit.ly/gjcPG (by @lmacvittie)

- Einstein, Sharks and Clouds http://bit.ly/GiAGs (by @RayDePena) /ME: loved sharks analogy - good read

- Top 5 Challenges faced by a Cloud Vendor / SaaS Provider http://bit.ly/UMsje (via @Symplified) #CloudViews

- Moving Applications to the Cloud – Determining What Applications Make Sense for Your Business http://bit.ly/iVapd webminar

- Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's: http://bit.ly/155KPt #CloudViews

- CIOs & Companies Fail to Measure Outsourcing Financial Effect http://bit.ly/112Z9i (via @PeterKretzman) ME: Cloud Computing will be the same

- Cloud Security Panel: Is Cloud Computing more or less secure than on-premises IT? http://bit.ly/13czc1 (via Dana_Gardner)

- RT @HighTechDad: Getting some laughs from John Keagy's NoHardware.com video at #CloudWorld - http://bit.ly/uItcX

- Cloud Computing: RT @wattersjames: "30 million servers out there at 10% utilization" #cloudworld

- Open-source, proprietary vendors partner on cloud-based Business Intelligence... http://bit.ly/tXon (via @DavidLinthicum)

- Ten observations about cloud computing http://bit.ly/2PnVJK (via @cloudcomp_group) /ME: good read

- Cloud Computing: Top 10 Worst Practices http://bit.ly/iQ32e by @madgreek65 (via @sectorprivate) /ME: of course I agree #CloudViews

- Cloud Computing debate; The 'imminent death' of enterprise IT as cloud models ascend http://bit.ly/og0ck (by @Dana_Gardner) #CloudViews

- Cloud Computing pushes enterprise architects beyond IT into business process optimization role http://bit.ly/13i6gl (by @Dana_Gardner)

- White Paper: Taking Account of Privacy When Designing Cloud Computing Services http://bit.ly/W6Gkt #CloudViews

- White Paper Cloud Computing: Defining a dWAF to secure cloud applications href="http://bit.ly/Qy3Ko">http://bit.ly/Qy3Ko #CloudViews

- How to Develop an Effective Security Strategy to Play in the Public Cloud http://bit.ly/IkxCL @sysconmedia #CloudViews

- Cloud Computing: Key Questions to Ask when Evaluating “SaaS” Alternatives http://bit.ly/diSz9

- White Paper SaaS: Brief History of Software as a Service - @computerworld http://bit.ly/diSz9 (via @Insol_IT @workinthecloud @tones810 )

- Why a 'protective' techie just can't trust the cloud http://bit.ly/2ANY3 by @pvenezia@infoworld (via @franciscojsaez )

- Speak at Cloud Connect 2010 - Call for Papers http://bit.ly/D0wVz (via @cloud_connect)

- Can security concerns kill cloud computing? http://bit.ly/1awJct /ME: on the other hand http://bit.ly/wvn5c ,@Kevin_Jackson

- Vendors must help with confusion over cloud computing - IT PRO http://bit.ly/ql7Ar (via @cloud_dennis) #CloudViews

- 5 Tips from Hackers on Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/YQd5V (via @CIOonline) #CloudViews

- Cloud Computing Explained: A Guide from Sun Microsystems http://bit.ly/13AuHg #CloudViews


Thanks and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

Cloud Computing, in Plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's

Sometimes we forget that every day, new people are discovering Cloud Computing, and that they know very little about it.

So the objective of this article is very simple... to explain Cloud Computing, in plain English, to IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's:,







I hope that with this video, you could understand what is Cloud Computing and what it can do to your company.

In the nexts articles, I will try to explain the followings points:

- Why Should IT Directors, VP's, CIO's and CEO's Care About Cloud Computing?
- Cloud Computing Equals to SaaS, Grid, Utility Computing, Hosting?
- What Exactly is Cloud Computing?
- Why Large Public and Private Sector Organizations (not just SMB's) Are Seriously Considering Cloud Computing?
- What are the Cloud Computing Challenges and Risks?
- Real-World Cloud Computing Applications
- Cloud Computing Enterprise Implementation Road-Map


Thanks, and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

Cloud Computing News: Week 3 to 9 Aug 2009

This list is a summary of Cloud Computing news that I posted during the past week on Twitter:

- RT @cloudbook: New: Thinking Out Cloud’s @gevaperry & the CEO of Twilio discuss recent developments in Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/nFtTK

- The days of traditional IT are numbered... http://bit.ly/gDx7A ,by @RayDePena ME: Yes, and 1 reason is http://bit.ly/oZf6J

- Security and Cloud Storage: Everybody Talks About it, but is it Really All That Different? http://bit.ly/JLB6j by @slesem

- The end of IT as we know it? http://bit.ly/hbtHp (by @VishAgashe) ME: Yes, and one reason is http://bit.ly/oZf6J

- Five Reasons Why Oracle Will Enter the Cloud Computing Business (by IDC) http://bit.ly/p1lRh

- 5 Lessons from Dark Side of Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/PACx2 (via @CIOonline) /ME: worth read

- Beware these risks of cloud computing, from no SLAs to vendor lock-in... http://bit.ly/11Wpab #CIO #CloudViews

- Twitter, Facebook and LiveJournal, where's your cloud bursting contingency plan? http://bit.ly/JX6Hv

- Facebook, Twitter, LiveJournal Down! Did The Cloud Actually Burst? http://bit.ly/JX6Hv (via @Ulitzer)

- Is Salesforce.com Set to Invade Healthcare? http://bit.ly/jajxx #CloudViews (by @CIOZone)

- U.S. DoD (Department of Defense) Holding Cloud Computing "Show & Tell" Workshop http://bit.ly/7cPxD (via @Kevin_Jackson)

- Site - Software as a Service Directory http://bit.ly/Ru0gI (via @onsaas)

- Cloud Computing Conference: 27-28 Aug 09 - San Diego, CA, USA http://bit.ly/KnKT9 (contact @skhage see if he still haves free admissions)

- Will cloud put traditional hosters out of business? http://bit.ly/14luNL #CloudViews

- Turning IT into a political issue - Computerworld http://bit.ly/10tzmL via (@cloud_dennis @MorphLabs)

- Introducing the Cloud Security Podcast http://bit.ly/3Rh7q with @CraigBalding and @Beaker #CloudViews

- Cloud Computing: CIO'S need to get in front of it, or your users will go out there, and... http://bit.ly/CsFBe by Mike Hill- IBM

- How the #CIO can appropriately leverage cloud to become the hero again http://bit.ly/M6PI5 (SYS-CON) #CloudViews

- RT @Werner: Server Labs eats their own dog food: moves 100% into the cloud at 1/3 of the cost http://bit.ly/jCohY

- @adowbor created a visual summary chart of NIST Cloud Computing definition http://bit.ly/1xwDXm /ME: great job

- Clouds and Beyond: Positioning for the Next 20 Years in Enterprise IT http://bit.ly/zIDmh (by @fgens - @IDC) #CloudViews

- Cloud Computing: The answer to supply chain woes http://bit.ly/zkpSE #ERP #CloudViews

- 'Culture' Biggest Hurdle To Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/81ln1 (via @wllm @cloudEq) /ME: I agree

- Cloud Computing is the Future of Mobile http://bit.ly/2qkWX by @sarahintampa (via @jafurtado)

- Cloud Computing Definitions: NIST, Gartner, Forrester http://bit.ly/fdSVP (via @Ulitzer)

- Oracle needs to clean up its applications to change the face of cloud computing? http://bit.ly/prnt4 #CloudViews

- Cloud Computing: 67 different definitions... what is and isn’t ‘cloud’ (via @Furrier @datacenter) http://bit.ly/13zhIv / read @sfoskett blog

- White Paper: "Before you dive into the Cloud, have you asked yourself these questions?" http://bit.ly/7CdrV (via @cmSYSCON)

- Closing The Gap With #SaaS (Forbes) (via@laurejuil) http://bit.ly/44z3c8 /ME: worth read

- Research Shows Flexibility a Factor in #SaaS Adoption http://bit.ly/38vvDn (via @sysconmedia)

- White Paper: Cloud Consumers & Vendors Collaborate on Common #CloudComputing Use Case Scenarios http://bit.ly/4s14XY (via @cloudbook)

- LucidEra Closes its Doors - SaaS BI Weathers the Storm (by Aberdeen’s Technology ) http://bit.ly/l4AwC

- Above the Clouds - A Berkeley View of Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/zRYac #CloudViews

- Unisys Delivers Secure Cloud Solution http://bit.ly/xbGOi (via @Kevin_Jackson) /ME: good news for enterprise clients

- White Paper: Solving the Privacy, Residency and Security Issues of Enterprise Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/GSAm3

- RT @RFFlores I Agree: Cloud Requires Mature IT Service Management http://bit.ly/hjHpn

- White Paper Cloud Computing & SaaS: Ensure the Success of Your SaaS Implementation Strategy: http://bit.ly/12y83i

- NetSuite team shares insights & experiences w/ Cloud Computing & SaaS Implementation http://bit.ly/CArCI (via @cloudbook)

- @ITKLCameron SaaS Not Equal Cloud. Like analogy I made http://bit.ly/XzhIF "a franchising is a business, not all businesses are franchises

- RT @carmengonza Register TODAY for #CloudComputing Expo and Attend Cloud Computing Bootcamp for FREE http://bit.ly/ljy9u

- Cloud Computing Debate: Zittrain Counters CIO.com Criticism http://bit.ly/PtDnv (via @charltonb) #CloudViews

- Enrico DePaolis Launches His "Cloud Computing Simplified" Blog on ULITZER http://bit.ly/2BJWa2 (via @CloudExpo)

- The Long Tail of Cloud Computing? http://bit.ly/3yyfG0 (via @6fusion) #CloudViews

- Researchers "found" a problem that could undermine cloud computing's cybersecurity: http://bit.ly/1pA2A #CloudViews

- Gartner Survey Issues #SaaS Reality Check http://bit.ly/ZM0dm (by @andreyee) #CloudViews

- Cloud Computing Security Risks - Are They Real? http://bit.ly/Qd6Nl (via @CloudAdoption) #CloudViews


Thanks and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

Cloud Computing News: Week 27 July to 2 Aug 2009

This list is a summary of Cloud Computing news that I posted during the past week on Twitter:

- When a SaaS solution should or should not be considered Cloud? http://bit.ly/cj4mo (via @CloudExpo)

- RT @JohnTreadway EXCELLENT post by @ghaff on CloudCamp Boston + observations made there: http://bit.ly/19eZjd via @beaker

- #CloudComputing trend is growing - Innovators have to be quick to survive... by @jmkap http://bit.ly/2icmS (via @cloudbook)

- #CloudComputing Makes Servers Obsolete http://bit.ly/rdXFI (by @lmacvittie) #CloudViews
- Cloud Computing Use Cases #WhitePaper Published by @doug_tidwell http://bit.ly/HiNt5 (via @ruv)

- Federal IT spending to increase modestly thanks to cloud computing http://bit.ly/V38jp (via @cloudysaas)

- GSA released their Cloud Computing Request For Quotation (RFQ): http://bit.ly/UOrdN (via @Kevin_Jackson) #GovCloud

- Software Vendors Scooping Up SaaS Players http://bit.ly/xDxbP (via @workinthecloud)

- #CloudComputing #WhitePaper: Securing Applications in the Clouds http://bit.ly/SM6dV (by HP) #CloudViews

- Mythbusters of Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/yC8Fv (via @byron_cpa)

- The ‘Cloud’ Is NOT Outsourcing http://bit.ly/PyAh0 (via @PeterKretzman @charltonb) #CloudViews

- The real cost of cloud computing services http://bit.ly/17zWn7 (#CIO Tips) #CloudViews

- CIO News: Latest Cloud Computing trend: End users buying IT as a Service http://bit.ly/R1OqT (via @TTintheCloud)

- #CloudComputing: "neither private sector nor public sector really understands what cloud computing is all about"... http://bit.ly/4iWPF

- #CloudComputing brings developers to the people http://bit.ly/wBzWL (via @infoworld @NolioSoft)

- #Cloudcomputing, low or high appeal for banks? http://bit.ly/pOYFf (via @bslook) #CloudViews

- Brokering Cloud Computing as a Commodity http://bit.ly/gSFVv (via @CloudExpo)

- Cloud Governance: Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed… http://bit.ly/7IgvE (via @CloudExpo)

- The 2009 Cloud Consensus Report - Federal cloud initiative & MeriTalk http://bit.ly/ZSIJP (via @CloudedAnalysis)

- #CloudComputing explained in 152 slides OSCON 09 http://bit.ly/peNcg (via @justinpirie @opteso) #CloudViews

- The Single Biggest Reason Public Clouds Will Dominate the Next Era of IT http://bit.ly/16QhpY (by @fgens IDC)

- #CloudComputing #WhitePaper: Introspective Security in Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/KvLEz (via @bslook @ruv) #CloudViews

- Bandwidth No Longer an Obstacle to Applications in the Cloud http://bit.ly/2zX2Xx (via @Kevin_Jackson) #CloudViews

- RT @Pointzeromedia: Call for speakers - #CloudComputing World Forum - 1/10/09, London - http://www.cloudwf.com/ - contact mark@pointzeromedia.com

- @Kevin_Jackson Tech Chair, 1st Annual Government IT Conference & Expo: http://bit.ly/a2hm4 #CloudViews #GovCloud

- The U.S. Government is Making the Move to the Cloud - Does Your Company Want To Get Involved? http://bit.ly/19xE70

- CIOZone has a brand-new, detailed take on Government 2.0: http://bit.ly/cHvQw @dhinchcliffe views: http://bit.ly/Z76O

- #WhitePaper: #CloudComputing for Healthcare & Life Sciences Data Warehousing http://bit.ly/TdqHr (via @recomdata) #CloudViews

- Is cloud computing right for enterprise? http://bit.ly/514Ow (via @cloudnetworking) #CloudViews

- PivotLink Eliminates the #Security Barriers to Cloud-Based Business Intelligence http://bit.ly/MCT3z (via @Kevin_Jackson)

- @Kevin_Jackson review of @MariaSpinola "Essential Guide..." http://bit.ly/yoR3i (via @ITKLCameron @cloudysaas)

- "Large percentage of Middle East firms adopts cloud computing" (PR) http://bit.ly/XVsaE

- #CloudComputing: The Cloud Its Benefits and Its Threats http://bit.ly/FWB2F (via @Rich_Bruklis)

- #CloudComputing: Federal agencies are pushing standards & definitions that help the business world http://bit.ly/CGzSn (via @Rich_Bruklis)

- #CloudComputing: Compliance Research Group Outlines Strategies for Stronger Risk Management http://bit.ly/3qPTST (via @Kevin_Jackson)

Thanks and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

Cloud Computing News: Week 20 to 26 July 2009

This list is a summary of Cloud Computing news that I posted during the past week on Twitter:

- Unisys & #CloudComputing: Exclusive Q&A with Rich Marcello http://bit.ly/JmBad (via @cloudnomics) #Security & #Privacy are big concerns...

- Sun Microsystems view on #CloudComputing: http://bit.ly/1cm61n

- List of advantages of #CloudComputing http://bit.ly/X8mKB (via @CloudMarkets) ME: and list of advantages vs risks: http://bit.ly/oBwga

- How is Your Cloud Computing Provider Doing? http://bit.ly/nXWYM (via @cloudysaas)

- The tech jobs that the cloud will eliminate... and which become more valuable? http://bit.ly/UNp9U

- Platform-as-a-Service (PAAS) market to grow to $15.2 B in global sales by 2016 according to Forrester (via @MCFTechnology @AmericanUnit)

- Jericho Forum Collaboration Oriented Architecture Position Paper http://bit.ly/1h5Er (via @Capgemini)

- Cloud security depends on the human element http://bit.ly/rkOsm (via @Dana_Gardner) ME: I agree completely

- Will IT pros love the cloud? http://bit.ly/k4nVa (via @TTintheCloud)

- Budget issues are biggest driver for cloud services - IDC Research - http://bit.ly/1uiDe (via @cloudnetworking)

- Survey: Company Data Safer in Data Centre as #CloudComputing Grows http://bit.ly/TU8yW (via @surprisedcloud)

- @Dana_Gardner panel on cloud security http://bit.ly/E3NBE

- RT @jshuey When I say SaaS --- You Say ... http://bit.ly/52KNS

- The Transformational Power of the Cloud for Knowledge Workers http://bit.ly/15MU8 (via @PowerInTheCloud)

- [Security] Architectural Framework http://bit.ly/Z4hno (via @Beaker) ME: Recommend

- Amazon Web Services Secrets Revealed - Source: InformationWeek http://bit.ly/TexLX (via @cloudEq)

- Will the Kindle Crisis Kill Cloud Computing? http://bit.ly/Rfgss (via @techwatching)

- RT @cloudbook New Contributor: Patrick Stingley @patrickstingley Federal CTO shares insights #Government #CloudComputing

- Bringing Cloud Computing Down to Earth with Ultra Low-Cost Endpoints http://bit.ly/v4N5c (via @cloudEq)

- The tech jobs that the cloud will eliminate http://bit.ly/10gOxL (via @cloudnetworking

- The Top #CloudComputing Solutions people are looking for in 2009– Survey by onCloudComputing.com http://bit.ly/1u9e3F (via @oncloudcomp)

- Loads of good Cloud content (papers/presos) from Usenix/HotCloud09 http://bit.ly/A2KQ0 (via @Beaker)

- What does Amazon nuking Kindle copies of 1984 tell us about #CloudComputing? Unfortunately... http://bit.ly/FAVJg (via @Beaker @samj)

- The third draft of #CloudComputing Use Cases #WhitePaper is ready for your comments: http://bit.ly/r4CR0 (via @doug_tidwell) ME:recommend

- Vivek Kundra: #CloudComputing Could Improve Intergovernmental Collaboration: http://bit.ly/p0jvs (via @dasharp)

- Concerns raised as L.A. looks at Google Apps http://bit.ly/OTmsB

- Blog- SOA and Security: Are Services the Problem or the Solution? http://bit.ly/192ok0

- SOA, cloud: it's the architecture that matters http://bit.ly/nxQeS (via @cloudnomics)

- Open Group conf shows how security standards & governance hold keys to enterprise #cloud adoption http://bit.ly/2UKvmW (via @Dana_Gardner)

- Thanks onCloudComputing.com for publishing my #WhitePaper #CloudComputing http://bit.ly/sfiou and also thanks for the excellent feedback :)

- Is Your Cloud App Ready For 100,000 Users? http://bit.ly/wMcs9 (via @informationweek)

- A view of public & private cloud computing from the perspective of different applications & interfaces http://bit.ly/bE7mH (via @cloudbook)

- RThanks @PeterKretzman: If you read only 1 paper #cloudcomputing, I strongly recommend @mariaspinola "Essential Guide": http://bit.ly/RbXcy

- Engine Yard launches robust Ruby cloud-based deployment platform service http://bit.ly/ya1p0 (via @Dana_Gardner)

- RT @Kevin_Jackson #GovCloud The Government is the New Google http://twurl.nl/o5z1r5 (http://tiny.cc/KLJ)

- New Contributor: Maria Spinola @mariaspinola shares her insights on cloud computing with the community http://bit.ly/wLUrU (via @cloudbook)

- Lost in the Cloud... NYTimes http://bit.ly/2h7XRI #CloudViews

- Paper: @ChrisCrandell on Advancing Application Availability with PAN Manager Software http://bit.ly/48C6FK (via @cloudbook)

- "What happens when the biggest IT buyer in the world gets into #cloudcomputing? http://bit.ly/Q0ad9 (via @wllm @digiphile)

- Why Wouldn't You Adopt Cloud Computing? http://bit.ly/aVRgl (via @vaklove)

- Standards Groups Collaborate on Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/tHWTG (via @TheCloudNetwork)

- BMC makes cloud management push with Amazon as partner (by InfoWorld) http://bit.ly/SwhSL

- Three critical -- and avoidable -- cloud computing mistakes (by InfoWorld) http://bit.ly/14uO5V

- Before you jump into the Cloud, did you asked: "Who is accountable if something goes wrong?" or... http://bit.ly/oYn5K

- HP Acquires Cloud Computing Company http://bit.ly/sRDSO (via @cloudnetworking)

- Report: Twitter Hack Caused by Hasty Adoption of Cloud Computing http://bit.ly/9BuRf (via @iintelicomp)

- A Pragmatic, Effective and Hype-Free Approach for Strategic Enterprise Decision Making http://bit.ly/oYn5K

- List of Top “Cloud Computing Solution Providers to Watch in 2009″ http://bit.ly/yOYEe

- Cloud Data Import, Export by Amazon http://bit.ly/t5z7v (via @TheCloudNetwork)

- 4 1/2 Ways to Deal With Data During Cloudbursts http://bit.ly/7F1Ik (via @surprisedcloud)

- Clearing up cloud computing - Chicago Tribune http://bit.ly/3dp4JQ (via @cloud_dennis)

- Can Microsoft (or Rackspace) Dethrone Cloud King Amazon? http://bit.ly/mE1k0 (via @surprisedcloud)

- Government Adoption - The Cloud, the Crowd, and Public Policy http://bit.ly/Lp5jV

- White Paper: Emergency Preparedness for Local Government http://bit.ly/2NEZTp (via @Jonathan_Kantor @247survival)

- Ruby-on-Rails Apps Get Cloud Lift http://bit.ly/lSmZw

- Do You Trust Google More Than You Trust Your Wife? http://bit.ly/tab0t

- Will You Lead Cloud Computing or Will You Follow? http://bit.ly/D0kSR (via @cloudysaas)

- I just joined CIOZone - Professional Network for CIO's and IT Professionals - as a contributor: http://bit.ly/RGN4B


Thanks and please let me know how can I help you.
Maria Spínola
http://www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola

White Paper: An Essential Guide to Possibilities and Risks of Cloud Computing

Cloud Computing is quite possibly the hottest, most discussed and often misunderstood concept in Information Technology (IT) today.

In short, Cloud Computing proposes to transform the way IT it's deployed and managed, promising reduced implementation, maintenance costs and complexity, while accelerating innovation, providing faster timeto-market, and the ability to scale high-performance applications and infrastructures on demand.

But business managers know that in spite of the benefits of every new technology/business model there are also risks and issues (like for example: trust, loss of privacy, regulatory violation, data replication, coherency and erosion of integrity, application sprawl and dependencies, etc.) and that rushing things when it comes to Cloud Computing can be a very bad decision, but blowing off Cloud Computing all together because you think you can secure your own stuff better than a service provider or because many claims, made about Cloud Computing, have lead you to the point of “irrational exuberance” and unrealistic expectations, isn't smart, either.



The goal of this White Paper is to provide a realistic perspective of the possibilities, benefits and risks of Cloud Computing; what to look for, what to avoid, and also some tips and best practices on implementation, architecture and vendor management strategies. It is important to consider all those aspects before you decide either to move (but without putting the carriage before the horse) or not to move your systems, applications, and/or data to to the “Cloud”, in a “hype free” approach.


Click here to download the White Paper (or click on the image at left side)


Thanks and please let me know how I can help you.

Maria Spínola
http:///www.twitter.com/MariaSpinola


P.S. And of course your comments, feedback's and thoughts are always welcome.

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