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Lori MacVittie

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WILS: Three Ways To Better Utilize Resources In Any Data Center

Cloud computing is, at its core, about using resources in the most operational and financially efficient manner possible

Cloud computing is, at its core, about using resources in the most operational and financially efficient manner possible. It’s about spreading resources around and sharing them to achieve greater scalability with fewer investments in hardware and software. But what if you aren’t moving to cloud? Or virtualization? Or perhaps you are, but the benefits won’t be really seen until you actually get enough resources shared across your organization. Isn’t there any other way to better utilize the resources you have now to improve the bottom line?

Yes, yes, there is. And the best part is that these methods will increase the efficiency of resource utilization in any architectural model.

1 “Server” offload technologies are applicable to any server – physical or virtual The efficiencies gained in server resource utilization and increase in VM densities are not peculiar to a cloud environment. In fact, the offload capabilities of an application delivery controller (SSL, TCP session management, compression, caching) can benefit any “server” in any environment. Because the offload capabilities are applied at the transport protocol and application protocol layers, these benefits are universal to web and application servers whether residing in virtual machines or on physical hardware, in the cloud or in a traditional data center.

 

2 Proactive security measures Whether it’s stopping common web application attacks or SPAM from entering the network, proactive security measures can make more efficient use of resources available by preventing them from spending time on “bad” or “illegitimate” traffic. Stopping attacks and SPAM and other malicious content at the perimeter of the data center prevents resources on the network, on the servers, and in the storage systems from being used to transport, process, and store what is nothing more than garbage. This improves the efficiency of the entire infrastructure and does not require a cloud model to achieve.

 

3 Automated Storage Tiering Automated storage tiering can automatically move less frequently accessed files to less expensive storage arrays while moving more frequently accessed files to faster, more expensive storage. Automating such processes mean administrators need not manually determine which file goes where, or optimize storage based on performance and cost by pulling out a slide ruler and calculating costs per megabyte. The system automatically determines how to best utilize the storage based on cost and performance and acts on behalf of the storage administrator, like a digital storage maid service that never needs to be reminded to sweep the floor.

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Lori MacVittie is responsible for education and evangelism of application services available across F5’s entire product suite. Her role includes authorship of technical materials and participation in a number of community-based forums and industry standards organizations, among other efforts. MacVittie has extensive programming experience as an application architect, as well as network and systems development and administration expertise. Prior to joining F5, MacVittie was an award-winning Senior Technology Editor at Network Computing Magazine, where she conducted product research and evaluation focused on integration with application and network architectures, and authored articles on a variety of topics aimed at IT professionals. Her most recent area of focus included SOA-related products and architectures. She holds a B.S. in Information and Computing Science from the University of Wisconsin at Green Bay, and an M.S. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University.