Benjamin Grubin

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Top Stories by Benjamin Grubin

One of the advantages that Amazon's AWS has held is the ability to massively scale its elastic compute cloud (EC2) with nearly hands-free automation.  Amazon, of course, has always been very private about how it does this, but it seems clear that one of the keys has been their substantially customized version of the Xen hypervisor which (among other things) likely has implemented a form of software defined networking (SDN) for a pretty long while.  Capabilities such as AWS CloudFormation, security zones, Elastic Load Balancer, and others have clearly shown that much of what used to be network hardware is implemented in their software stack.  With VPC, AWS has been a leader in SDN, with strong network isolation (including overlapping IP ranges) that are obviously embedded in the hypervisor and supported by a custom hardware stack.  There's little argument that this h... (more)

The Essential Elements of a Private Cloud

Not long ago, Forrester analyst James Staten wrote a report with the compelling title: You're Not Ready for Internal Cloud. What Staten meant, of course, by the term "internal cloud" is what we have been referring to in this blog as a private cloud. Whether you're ready or not probably depends a lot on where you are on the project path. For those just starting on the private cloud journey, it might be useful to get the lay of the land and discuss the essential elements of any private cloud project, and point out areas where my definition diverges from Staten's, as a recognized e... (more)

Cloud Computing - Keep It Simple Stupid

End users like to live in a comfort zone. For many that means their work applications should resemble the ones they use at home or the ones on their mobile phones. These programs tend to be simple, consistent and easy to use. And more and more, end users are demanding the same simplicity they find in these consumer tools in the tools they use at work. What's an IT pro to do? One of the basic tenets of private cloud computing is keeping it simple for end users. That means when they access your resource selection tool on the Web, users will find it as friendly to use as, say iTunes.... (more)

One Size Most Definitely Does Not Fit All

Larry Ellison let it be known at the recent Oracle OpenWorld (an ironic name if I ever heard one) that he saw nothing wrong with companies using just Oracle solutions across the entire enterprise. Of course, he would think that given that he runs Oracle. But these days, more often than not, you are going to find multiple solutions from a variety of vendors, and you need a cloud solution that is going to support them all. Once upon a time, a company was an IBM shop with IBM mainframes, software and support services. On one level, CIOs might have found this single vendor view attr... (more)

Cloud Management Could Change the CIO's Role

It's no secret that cloud computing has been on the minds of a lot of IT executives. Conference agendas are filled with cloud talk and the Internet is abuzz with it. As more enterprise IT departments move to the cloud, it begs the question: How will it affect the traditional role of the CIO. It's fair to say that there will be changes if the department shifts from a service provider to utility model with usage-based metering. This will cause a shift in core tasks from developing applications and user interfaces and so forth, to a new set of tasks involving defining service-level... (more)