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Developing the customized cloud in the data center

Eric Tabor  |  April 17, 2014

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The past few years have seen a wholesale embrace of cloud storage and application hosting approaches, and companies are continuing to look for solutions that meet their evolving computing needs. Despite the rapid growth of cloud services, however, the majority of cloud deployments are still private, occurring in the on-premise or managed data center, according to VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger. While the move to public cloud services is set to continue as companies look for cheaper delivery models for certain services, this general reality is expected to stay consistent for the foreseeable future.

"On-premise cloud is a $2 trillion market … 92 percent of cloud is on-premise," Gelsinger said at the Cloud Factory conference in Banff, Alberta, according to VentureBeat. "And Gartner says that by 2020 it will still be 77 percent."

Companies are keeping their clouds on-premise due to reasons tied to security, cost, government regulations and availability, Gelsinger added. However, there's another reason for the ongoing use of on-premise cloud: There are many ways to use the cloud, and not all of them are best suited for public cloud deployments. Companies can leverage virtual servers in a variety of ways, and the dominant model for new IT deployments is moving toward custom implementations on a per-use basis, ITBusinessEdge's Arthur Cole wrote in a recent column. Rather than following industry trends, companies are looking for the right way to meet their needs for individual applications, whether they have certain scale requirements that necessitate using the public cloud or regulatory demands that make it easier to keep data in a single colocation facility.

"If ever there was an example of a technology being all things to all people … it is the cloud," Cole wrote. He later added, "Cloud infrastructure, then, is likely to become as diverse as today's legacy environments, but with the added twist that it can be made and remade according to the needs of the moment."

As companies look for the best balance of cloud deployments, they can benefit from working with a managed services provider or IT consulting firm to determine the optimal data center infrastructure and virtual server architecture solutions to meet their needs.

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Eric Tabor

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