Visualizing Server Infrastructure: Industry's Hottest Trend

Jason Worley, CIO, Adeptus
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Challenges in technology to meet enterprise needs in 2014 and expectations

Managing big-data is a growing problem (pardon the pun). "De-dupe everywhere" (de-duplication) is inevitable in my opinion, effectively a form of  compression, I expect to see de-dupe technology make its way into virtually every level of technology in the enterprise. I have been very impressed with some of the innovations that some of the storage, data backup, and virtualization vendors have made on this in the recent few years. If it's not available (or there by default) already, I expect to see everything from RAM, local storage, central storage (SAN etc), communications technology and everything in between move to de-dupe as a method of more efficient processing, storage and transmission of information.

"Enterprise storage is quickly becoming a software game."

Areas in business environment where solutions do not yet exist

Mobile device, cloud storage, and BYOD management are some of my continued concerns, what I call proliferation of "shadow-IT", meaning  employees storing important company information "in the cloud", where it is not managed nor touched by traditional IT systems. We work hard to educate our employees on this topic, and in most cases work "with" them on properly using these services, so they may glean the benefits of the cloud (such as convenience), but the enterprise still has some control over the fate of that information. Similarly, we see the progression of employees’  knowledge in the IT area increasing, due to the proliferation of advanced devices such as tablets, social media, smartphones, and "internet  everywhere", however, the struggle is that the consumer-level devices give a false sense of security and knowledge to the end-user, in an enterprise environment.

Trends impacting enterprise business environment

One of the most interesting trends I see is the continued adoption and push of virtualization into the enterprise. From most industry reports I have read, sometime in fall 2013 the total number of virtual computers in existence exceeded the number of physical computers in existence, for the first time. At First Choice ER, we were relatively early adopters of this technology. We 100 percent virtualized our server infrastructure in late 2008, and I'm glad to see it has been widely accepted and continues to improve dramatically every year. Another interesting trend I see, is that enterprise storage is quickly becoming a software game.

The role of CIOs today

Our business has dramatically grown over the past few years, so we have had to really pay attention to scalability and performance of our systems. My role has really laser-focused on how do we build processes to facilitate and support our growth, rather than historically fighting the daily incremental battles or technical issues. I’ve been busy recruiting and building my team, trying to stay on top of where the IT industry is going in general, making  sure we are meeting the needs of our users, and trying to innovate and bring new technologies to our business when it makes sense.

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