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Posts Tagged ‘Cloud Applications

What do you need to move to the Cloud?Today, many organizations are contemplating how to harness the power of Cloud Computing in order to streamline their IT processes and make their daily computing lives easier — but how many organizations are actually ready to make the switch from the desktop to the Cloud?

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The many benefits of cloud computing include: the ability to access your data wherever you are; no need for bulky physical storage devices; easy scalability based on the organizations’ size; lower demands on in-house IT professionals’ time. Disadvantages to consider when moving to the cloud are limited, but may include reliance on a third party to ensure information is kept secure and confidential, and concern that when the cloud goes down access to data may also be lost. Despite these points, the positives far outweigh the negatives when it comes to moving an organization over to the cloud.

The future of the cloud is promising; in fact it looks positively fantastic. Predictions and forecasts suggest that the estimated cloud computing market value for 2015 is approximately $121.1billion. Even more interestingly, the U.S. government has shown that they are willing to invest in cloud computing, and by 2014 the U.S. IT budget is expected to have dedicated $1 billion exclusively to cloud computing. The predictions for the United Kingdom are similarly impressive – in 2011 the cloud computing market in the UK is estimated to be at around $2.4 billion, and by 2014 the predictions suggest it will reach a massive $6.1 billion.

With so many clear benefits, organizations of all sizes are considering transitioning their IT services to the cloud, but many don’t realize that network performance is a critical component to successfully deploying cloud services; there is still a long way to go before many organizations can handle these changes to their network infrastructure.

It is becoming more and more apparent that the future of computing is in the cloud. For this reason, there’s never been a better time to assess your network’s performance in order to assure that your organization is ready to successfully make the big switch.

In today’s business climate, organizations are risk averse and looking for rapid payback on their IT investments. These are key reasons why cloud computing and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) deployments have become so popular so quickly – and why time-to-value is now a focal criteria in evaluating IT solutions.

Time-to-value is fundamentally a measure of customer experience. How high are the time, effort, planning and training hurdles an organization has to jump before it experiences tangible business value from an investment? Offering much lower cost of entry and a pay-as-you-go utilization model, cloud-based deployments offer time-to-value equations no on-premise solution can hope to match.

PathView microAppliances enable zero-administration, cloud-based deployment of network performance management capabilities.

So why does on-premise software still exist? One reason is that some on-premise solutions may still offer greater long-term business value than SaaS alternatives, by supporting integrations and customizations that push the limits of today’s SaaS models. Another reason is that businesses are looking to get maximum leverage from the investments they’ve already made in on-premise IT.

The ideal, “grand slam” IT investment is one that combines rapid time-to-value with massive long-term value plus the ability to squeeze more value from what you already own

So how are we defining value? How do you know you are investing in technology that will deliver network performance management quickly and effectively?

  • It’s easy to buy. Today, cloud-based technology offers all the advantages of SaaS. Low-cost, easily configurable, plug-and-play bundles that give any size organization everything it needs for one predictable monthly price.
  • It delivers huge business value. When managing your network, it is critical to have affordable, real-time, end-to-end insight into the performance of your network-dependent applications like unified communications, cloud/SaaS applications and virtual services.
  • It comes with everything you need. Integrated performance management services include active bandwidth monitoring, active application performance monitoring, remote flow generation and analysis and remote packet capture – all in one.
  • It works with what you have. You need a solution that can be cost-effectively deployed across any IP infrastructure. And can measure performance end-to-end from wherever a service originates to wherever it’s consumed, even over networks you don’t own.
  • The technology is proven. Achieving value can only come from a tried and true technology that is proven to deliver exceptional performance and predictable service levels across data center, remote office, mobile and cloud/SaaS environments.

AppNeta’s instant-value, cloud-based network performance management service is that kind of game-changing play for network performance management and networked application delivery. To learn more about how your organization can begin deriving immediate, lasting business value and competitive advantage from PathView Cloud technology, visit  www.appneta.com.

As companies turn to the Cloud as a low cost, highly scalable and agile way to save on their infrastructure cost or to host new applications, a number of cloud performance testing and monitoring solutions are appearing. There are applications popping up to perform load testing against your cloud infrastructure, some of which are even developed and hosted by the providers themselves, such as Grinder in the Cloud and Pylot,  as well as a number of commercial services.

While these tools are needed and can be quite valuable, they all miss the most critical aspect of cloud performance: the physical distance between your users and the cloud infrastructure.

The majority of applications that are run from the Cloud are running on top of TCP and because TCP is location dependent, the physical distance between your users and the Cloud Datacenter has a dramatic impact on the maximum achievable performance you will see from the cloud. As this example details the latency on a network connection can be a bigger factor in the end to end performance, so much so that a 1 Gbps WAN connection from New York to Chicago with latency of 30ms has a maximum achievable throughput of 17.4 Mbps. That distance between New York and Chicago just cost you 98% of the capacity you are paying for. Finding out where the Cloud Data Centers are should be one of the critical questions to be answered before signing on with any Cloud Provider.

There is now a way to see the performance to each of these cloud providers both in terms of the maximum achievable performance as well as the performance to major cities around North America. The Cloud Performance Center measures the performance from 10 major cities to leading Cloud Providers. The Cloud Performance Center provides real-time performance information including the Total and Available bandwidth, Latency, Packet Loss and Round Trip Time. All of this information is available free, and you can subscribe to be notified of performance issues in any provider you are interested in.

The low cost and high performance of the Cloud is changing the way IT is delivered, and now you are armed with the info needed to choose the right Cloud provider for you. Check out how your provider is performing at www.cloudperformancecenter.com

If you’re suffering from slow application performance, chances are you’re suffering from some degree of latency.  As everyone knows, each computer has its own performance limits.  With one too many applications, lag will result from the inability of the computer to process all of its inputs. If the application relies on connectivity with some type of remote device, such as a back-up service, an exchange e-mail server or even just video chatting with a colleague over the internet, the performance disruption or failure is a result of the network, rather than the hardware.

The latency on your network defines the minimum wait time before the person or service on the other end receives the packets you send. For a connection between New York and Los Angeles, the minimum possible latency is typically 40ms. In many cases, network traffic and misconfigurations can dramatically increase this time.

However, when it comes to cloud based applications, such as the CRM application we use here at Apparent Networks, both of these factors come into play and exponentially increase response time as they suffer performance losses. The local client for cloud based applications is usually a thin client, or even a web-browser client that only relays inputs to the actual application running on a machine on the cloud.  In this case, latency is the lag time for a signal to reach the server (for the NY to LA example, this would be at the lowest 40ms) the processing time for the server to create a response, and the time for it to be sent back to the client machine.

This increase in response time is also exacerbated when the application is an ‘on demand’, or live application, that requires packets to be sent upstream then received downstream whenever an action is taken.  An example of this is a virtualized desktop.  Because even the smallest action requires data to be sent, each individual action will be subject to the round trip latency on your network.

Latency is a problem – and one that we can’t afford to risk. So how do we ensure that latency stays at a minimum? For managed devices and services, optimization is up to the service provider. For localized devices and services, there are a plethora of tools that can determine and alert you on service quality drops.  However, with an increasingly network dependant world, how do we detect and address increases in response time on our carrier networks and externally managed services?

Without a network monitoring tool that can determine exactly what the problem is and pinpoint where on the network it is happening, troubleshooting is virtually impossible.  If the performance issue is occurring because of a lack of bandwidth, searching for lagging devices will not help.  If the latency is occurring across the WAN, you have no power to make optimizations without proof. PathView Cloud is one tool that manages network performance, including latency, up the path to remote applications and back to the source to detect real time changes in network performance. Learn more about PathView Cloud’s reporting capabilities here!


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