The tension within IT on moving to the cloud will resolve as organisations recognise that a hybrid cloud model is needed to serve their application portfolio.
CIOs will sort their application portfolio into those they must control entirely (in on-premise private clouds), control partially (in enterprise public clouds), as well as workloads that are more transient (public hyperscalar clouds), and those best purchased as SaaS. IT will act as brokers across these diverse cloud models. This will also uncover the need to easily move application data between clouds and to provision consistent storage service capabilities across different cloud models.
As the Software Defined Data centre vision gains acceptance, the evolutionary path of the infrastructure components become clearer. Policy-based software control over traditional infrastructure components begins to take root. Virtual versions of infrastructure components – network and storage controllers – become more common. The most valuable virtual components are the ones that cleanly integrate with existing physical network and storage systems, and can offer features and services consistent with those offered by traditional physical controllers.
The wide-spread adoptions of cloud computing and storage services have challenged traditional geopolitical barriers. This leads to concerns by large enterprises in many countries regarding government disclosure laws their data is subject to. Organisations outside of the US will seek hybrid cloud options that allow them to maintain sovereign control of their data while still taking advantage of cloud computing economics.
The next evolution of the Ethernet, 40Gb, begins widespread adoption at the core of the data centre. Higher bandwidths allow larger datasets to move more quickly and easily, which in turn encourages the growth of data.
Several technology trends that built momentum in 2013 will continue to grow. Clustered storage adoption accelerates. Converged Infrastructure becomes the most compelling building block of data centre infrastructure. Object Storage grows in adoption as applications that monetise vast capacities of data objects gather momentum. And in-memory databases, led by the popularity of SAP Hana, enter the mainstream.
Jay Kidd is the CTO of NetApp.