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Lori MacVittie

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Latest Blogs from Lori MacVittie
It used to be that “mobile” access implied “remote” access. That’s no longer true. As the variety of clients continue to expand along with the venues from which we users can access corporate resources the ability to intelligently enforce access-control policies also increases in strate...
Both are taken for granted but provide vital services without which you and your digital presence would be lost. In the case of DNS, that should be taken literally. Mom. She’s always there, isn’t she? She kissed away your bumps and bruises. You treated her like Google before you had ...
Virtualization has many benefits in the data center – some that aren’t necessarily about provisioning and deployment. There are some things on your shopping list that you’d never purchase sight unseen or untested. Houses, cars, even furniture. So-called “big ticket” items that are g...
The response from sufferer’s of Celiac Disease (and similar conditions) to Subway’s announcement it was trying out a new, gluten-free version of some of its sandwiches was heavily weighted toward excitement. One of the most frustrating effects of suffering from Celiac’s is, of course, ...
Alan Shimel twitterbird posted a question as a blog post last week regarding the usefulness of anti-virus products on desktops. It was an intriguing question because no doubt many of us who are security savvy have asked ourselves the same thing – especially if our AV scanner is consum...
The consumerization of IT is well underway. Supporting secure remote access via what are traditionally “consumer” gadgets is a must.     In the days when Web 2.0 was forcing its way into IT along with the Millennials the warning went out to IT: either you adopt the technology or yo...
If you ask someone to describe the kinds of animals that are in the ocean they probably think of odd invertebrates like jellyfish and octopuses and of course the colorful, strange looking fish. They might also mention the corals or in particular the coral reefs – those long stretches o...
The saying goes that if all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. I suppose then that it only makes sense that if the only tool you have for dealing with the rapid dynamism of today’s architectural models is virtualization that everything looks like a virtual image. Virtu...
In the wake of attacks that disrupted service to many popular sites in December the question on many folks’ minds was: how do you prevent such an attack? My answer to that question was – and continues to be – you can’t. You also can’t prevent an SQLi attack, or an XSS-based attack, or...
It’s not just having partnerships, it’s what you do with them that makes a difference When you’re an application delivery focused organization it kind of behooves you to focus on, well, applications. But since you don’t actually develop the applications yourself, how do you ensu...
The premise upon which scalability through cloud computing and highly virtualized architectures is built is the rapid provisioning of additional resources as a means to scale out to meet demand. That premise is a sound one and one that is a successful tactic in implementing a scalabil...
While just about every developer and information security professional knows that a buffer-overflow exploit can result in the execution of malicious code not many truly grok the “why”. Fortunately, it’s not really necessary for either one to be able to walk through the execution stack ...
The right infrastructure will eventually enable providers to suggest the right services for each customer based on real needs. When I was in high school I had a job at a fast food restaurant, as many teenagers often do. One of the first things I was taught was “suggestive sellin...
When you look across the “class” of attacks used to perpetrate a denial of service attack you start seeing patterns. These patterns are important in determining what resources are being targeted because it provides the means to implement solutions that mitigate the consumption of those...
Modern DoS attacks are distributed, diverse and cross the chasm that divides network components from application infrastructure. A unified application delivery platform with multi-layer visibility is the best way to detect and mitigate multi-layer attacks. The WikiLeaks attacks...
If Anonymous has taught us anything it’s that the future of information security is in fending off attacks across the breadth and depth of the network stack – and the data center architecture – at the same time. Traditionally DDoS attacks are so-named because the clients are distribute...
Anyone familiar with enterprise-class infrastructure and servers knows that lights-out management is a must-have; not just in the event of a failure but also in the face of any event that compromises the ability of an admin or operator from accessing the machine. Lights-out management ...
When WAN optimization was getting its legs under it as a niche in the broader networking industry it got a little boost from the fact that remote/branch office connectivity was the big focus of data centers and C-level execs in the enterprise. Latency and congested WAN links between co...
Bridging the gap between data access and cloud storage to enable a critical storage strategy: tiering. There’s a disconnect between the way in which we access files and the way in which cloud storage providers are offering us access to files stored “in the cloud”. We use well-est...
It’s time to stop talking about imaginary trolls under the cloud bridge and start talking about the real security challenges that exist in cloud computing .  I’ve been watching with interest a Twitter stream of information coming out of the Gartner Data Center conference this w...
That’s “Improvise. Adapt. Overcome.” and it should be if it isn’t. The right tools can help you live up to that motto.  If you Google “Zeus Trojan” you’ll find a wealth of information. Unfortunately all that wealth appears to be draining into the bank accounts of miscreants levera...
Cloud computing is mostly about “elasticity.” The extraction and contraction of resources based on demand. It is the contraction of resources which is oft times forgotten but without it, cloud computing and highly dynamic, virtualized infrastructures are little more than seamless capac...
Why these two are very different but complementary technologies Have you ever wondered why one network product is called a “controller” while another seemingly similar in function solution is called a “gateway”? There’s actually a very good reason for the naming and despite appea...
Balancing security, speed, and scalability is easy if you have the right infrastructure. A dynamic infrastructure. All the talk about “reusing” and “sharing” resources in highly virtualized and cloud computing environments makes it sound as if IT has never before understood how...
One of the universal truths about user adoption is that if performance degrades, they will kick and scream and ultimately destroy your project. Most VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure) solutions today still make use of traditional thin-client protocols like RDP (Remote Desktop Pr...
There are a few vertical industries for which performance is absolutely critical. A delay of even a micro-second can mean a huge differential in revenue or lost opportunities. A delay of seconds is a disaster, and more than that? Might as call yourself unavailable. While most organizat...
F5 introduces its Service Delivery Network to help service providers weather the storm.   If you haven’t seen the video “Everything’s amazing, nobody’s happy” (Louis CK) go ahead and check it out. You won’t regret it, trust me. Especially the section where he’s talking about the ...
Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. If you’re concerned about maintaining application availability, then these three rules of thumb shall be the number of the counting. Any less and you’re asking for trouble.    I like to glue...
No one knows that better than a service provider. Remember when the iPhone launched? Remember the complaints about the device not maintaining calls well? Was it really the hardware? Or was it the service provider network, overwhelmed by not just the call volume but millions of h...
 Data replication is still an issue for large organizations and as data growth continues, those backup windows are getting longer and longer… With all the hype surrounding cloud computing and dynamic resources on demand for cheap you’d think that secondary and tertiary data centers...
Back in the day (when they still let me write code) I was contracted to a global transportation firm where we had just completed the very first implementation of an Internet-enabled tracking system. We had five whole pilot customers and it was, to say the least, a somewhat fragile syst...
Without the proper feedback an automated data center can experience vertigo, leaving end-users dizzy and frustrated. As organizations continue to virtualize and automate the data center in their quest to liberate themselves and their users from the physical bonds that have kept them ...
Caramel. Chocolate nougat. Coconut. No matter what liquid, flowing, tasty goodness is hidden inside a chocolate bar, without the chocolate shell to hold it we’d be in whole a lot of trouble because your mom would so be on you for that mess, let me tell you. Every food-stuff that is li...
Improving the availability, performance, and security of Microsoft Lync Server 2010 with F5 BIG-IP The word “consolidation” generally brings to mind these days a reduction in physical equipment, whether that physical equipment be servers or infrastructure. But consolidation can – a...
Say “cloud” and ask for a definition today and you’ll still get about 1.2 different answers for every three people in the room. It’s just a rather nebulous technology that’s hard to nail down and because it’s something that’s defined by characteristics rather than a concrete specificat...
A deeper dive on how to apply scalability best practices using infrastructure services. So it’s all well and good to say that you can apply scalability patterns to infrastructure and provide a high-level overview of the theory but it’s always much nicer to provide more detail so so...
Automated configuration analysis that’s accessible as a service. How cool is that? Tuning infrastructure that’s designed to mediate for applications can be difficult, especially when there are a lot of knobs and buttons to push, pull, twist and turn. It’s often not convenient to ...
Discussions typically associated with application integration – particularly when integrating applications that are deployed off-premise – are going to happen in integration-doom-signthe infrastructure realm. It’s just a matter of time. That’s because many of the same challenges the wo...
When the terms “acceleration” and “optimization” in relation to application delivery are used it often evokes images of compression, caching, and similar technologies. Sometimes it even brings up a discussion on protocol optimization, which is really where things get interesting. Y...
Catching bees with honey(pots) means they’re preoccupied with something other than stinging you. Pop quiz time…pencils ready? Go. Is it good or bad to block malicious requests? If your answer was “that depends on a lot of different factors” then pat yourself on the back. You done ...