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In many cases, the end of the year gives you time to step back and take stock of the last 12 months. This is when many of us take a hard look at what worked and what did not, complete performance reviews, and formulate plans for the coming year. For me, it is all of those things plus a time when I u...
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New CloudSwitch Blog for Enterprise Cloud Computing
Welcome to our enterprise cloud computing blog where we'll share our perspectives on cloud computing trends

Welcome to our enterprise cloud computing blog where we'll share our perspectives on cloud computing trends and best practices for the enterprise.

We're a team with extensive experience in IT software and systems (learn more about us), and we're passionate about the opportunity that cloud computing offers for fundamentally improving enterprise IT.

However, we believe that before the cloud can reach its potential, some innovation needs to take place within the enterprise data center to make cloud computing simple, secure and tightly integrated with existing IT infrastructure. Our mission is to do just that. We tend to see the world from the data center out, unlike much of the innovation around cloud computing to date, which has focused on the cloud as a separate and silo'd environment.

Enterprise Cloud Computing Hurdles
We share the view held by many that the cloud will transform enterprise computing. Market analyst firm Gartner predicts that by 2012, 80% of Fortune 1000 enterprises will be paying for some cloud computing service. We also believe that there are significant hurdles to this transformation, including data security, application re-architecture, poor integration with the data center and lock-in to cloud providers.

Security Risks
Protecting data within the cloud is the biggest concern for most enterprises when considering cloud deployments. When security is partly out of enterprise control, it becomes difficult to know with confidence if sensitive information has been accessed or compromised.

Applications Re-architecture
Today, moving an enterprise application to a cloud requires re-writing software to adapt the application to a specific cloud provider's infrastructure. A whole landscape of specifications for devices, services, networks, storage and other components has to be mapped to the virtual environment. This can take weeks or months of development work, time that many companies cannot afford.

Data Center Integration
Once the application is running in the cloud, managing it requires adhering to the cloud provider's tools and policies, even if they conflict with those of the enterprise. The application also needs to communicate back to existing business processes, identity services, databases and management tools - all the underlying components on which the enterprise depends.

Cloud Provider Lock-in
Cloud lock-in is always a concern when a cloud environment is out of enterprise control. What happens if the cloud provider changes its terms or its underlying infrastructure? What happens if another cloud provider comes along with a more attractive offer?

Subscribe to this blog so that you can know when we address these hurdles in more detail. Please share your thoughts on these and other hurdles and how you're thinking about solving them.

Our Vision for Enterprise Cloud Computing
At CloudSwitch, we believe enterprise cloud computing must achieve certain core tenets in order to deliver on its potential:

  • Cloud resources should be secured end-to-end as an extension of the enterprise's security perimeter
  • Applications should be able to run in the cloud without modification
  • Users should be able to manage applications running in the cloud just as if they were running in the data center, using existing management tools and processes
  • The enterprise should be free from cloud lock-in, able to move applications at will whenever it is appropriate, to another cloud or back to the data center.

Our goal for this blog is as a resource to help enterprises better understand and overcome the challenges that stand in the way of simple and secure enterprise cloud computing. We look forward to sharing what we learn from our customers and partners with you.

Read the original blog entry...

About Ellen Rubin
Ellen Rubin is the CEO and co-founder of ClearSky Data, an enterprise storage company that recently raised $27 million in a Series B investment round. She is an experienced entrepreneur with a record in leading strategy, market positioning and go-to- market efforts for fast-growing companies. Most recently, she was co-founder of CloudSwitch, a cloud enablement software company, acquired by Verizon in 2011. Prior to founding CloudSwitch, Ellen was the vice president of marketing at Netezza, where as a member of the early management team, she helped grow the company to more than $130 million in revenues and a successful IPO in 2007. Ellen holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and an undergraduate degree magna cum laude from Harvard University.

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