Thoughts on enterprise IT

Dustin Amrhein

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Top Stories by Dustin Amrhein

A common feature of cloud computing solutions is that they enable self-service access to the services they provide. This enables users to directly procure services from the cloud, and it eliminates the need for more time-consuming, labor-intensive, human-driven procurement processes familiar to many in IT.  That's not to say that a cloud computing solution should provide its services in a free-for-all manner, letting any user take any action within the system. There should be strict controls over the services users have access to and the actions they can perform with those services. This is the only way to ensure that such solutions can actually stand up to the rigors of an enterprise environment. That being said, the WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance strikes a nice balance between self-service access and security. This balance enables WebSphere CloudBurst users to p... (more)

WebSphere CloudBurst in Test Organizations

The WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance can bring speed and agility to test organizations by drastically increasing the pace and ease with which users interact with WebSphere Application Server environments. I recently got a chance to catch up with IBM's Robbie Minshall. Robbie is a WebSphere Test Architect, and he is responsible for a team of testers that harness a lab of over 2,000 physical machines to put our WebSphere Application Server product through some pretty rigorous testing. Toward the beginning of 2009 Robbie’s team started to leverage the WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance in... (more)

Virtualization in the Enterprise

I spent last week at the annual IBM IMPACT event, and had a lot of great conversation with enterprise users about some of the transformations taking place in the IT industry. Most of my conversations focused on virtualization and the broader cloud computing architectural shift, and many of these conversations reminded me of how early in this journey we still are. Many enterprise users are still very much in the "toes in the water" phase when it comes to cloud computing. Specifically, that phase is somewhere between assessing the business value and working out a prototype for the ... (more)

Adopting Virtualization is Not Without Friction

This much is clear, advanced virtualization techniques are here. Some time ago, we moved beyond base operating system virtualization, towards virtualization approaches that render more functionally complete systems. From single virtual images that contain entire software stacks (i.e. LAMP, JEE servers, content management systems, etc.), to virtual appliances built to satisfy particular workloads, the functional encapsulation provided by various virtualization techniques continues to expand. On the surface, this is an obvious benefit to end-users, but that does not mean it comes ... (more)

The Intersection of Legacy Processes and Cloud Computing

One of the really cool things about getting out and talking with users about different cloud computing approaches is that, in many cases, you get to pose radically different ways of doing things within an organization. In some discussions, you can practically see the wheels turning behind the eyes of the audience as they think what this new approach means to them, their teams, and their organization. This usually results in some fun (and challenging) conversations about what cloud adoption means to the existing operational process of users. I spend much of my time talking with u... (more)