The Foundation of Cloud Computing

The phrase cloud computing is used all the time these days, but a lot of people are still baffled by what all the commotion is about and what it all means to them. The IT scene is ever changing faster than it has ever changed before.

Unless you are the one who created the cloud and spend all of your time reading computer tech manuals, it is real easy to lag behind in the knowledge needed to stay up to date on the new area of IT. For example, storage area networks (SAN) are being considered a traditional technology and the SAN is now being phased out.

Now more solutions are beginning to adopt storage solutions which are bringing the data I/O even closer to the system itself. Now cloud infrastructure, grid computing and other data centers are now replacing the old LUN (Logical Unit Number) based storage solutions.

New technology like the erasure coded disk is beginning to impact the way shops are implementing RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) storage. The object based and network attached storage are becoming more commonplace as applications servers are virtualized into the cloud.

Cloud computing utilizes something called virtual abstraction to facilitate the rapid deployment of applications and data to help reduce costs and lower the complexity of providing the underlying infrastructure, which in turn simplifies operations. The main goal is to free up the IT team to enable them to get back to more strategic projects and to allow them to use the technology as a service instead of just something they have built and manage.

Definition of Intelligent Abstraction

Intelligent abstraction as related to the computer industry is the decoupling of applications and data from all the physical constraints while still providing a policy based management, movement, storage and protection systems and information.

Cloud Characteristics

The idea of IA (Information Architecture) is simple. The cloud is constructed of a server and storage virtualization solutions which are tied together with software management and monitoring functions. According to NIST (National Institute for Standards and Technology), for the solution to be thought of as a cloud, it has to include the following 5 characteristics:

On-demand self-service

Broad network access

Resource pooling with location independence

Rapid elasticity

Measured service

IA incorporates the benefits of AI (artificial intelligence), the server and the storage virtualization and policy based automation together with the advances in data management technology that was made for the software defined data center to help redefine how information and infrastructures are managed.

The good news for storage companies, the underlying storage infrastructure is virtualized, so it dramatically reduces the need for developing a deep knowledge of the storage itself. You should only need to know how the virtual abstraction layer works.

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