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Posts Tagged ‘infrastructure as a service’

 

Get Your Game On in the Cloud

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013 by

Do you play mobile games on your smartphone or tablet? What about on your computer? And do you still put in a CD or DVD to play them? Or do you download an app to play? Have you ever tried an online game within Facebook? And what about on your game console? As bandwidth has increased and technology has evolved, more and more of these gaming experiences are being served from the cloud. Online gaming has transcended physical media like CDs, DVDs, and installed applications and moved to virtual environments based on Flash, HTML5, or other streamed or in-browser technologies.

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According to investment bank Digi-Capital, mobile games account for 42 percent of all new game investments. If money trails are any indication of success, we should watch to see where the banks are investing. In December 2012, Forbes reported that US video game sales dropped 25 percent in the month of October 2012, falling from $1 billion to $775.5 million. Conversely, general spending on mobile and social games rose 7 percent to $7.24 billion in 2011…and that was a few years ago!

Just take a look at some of the games listed in this .NET article, “The top 10 HTML5 games of 2012.” It’s very impressive that the underlying technology is completely browser-based and that these games are absolutely interactive and full-featured. Just for fun, I decided to see how many of these HTML5 games are cloud-hosted. (Remember though, because HTML5 is in-browser code, it doesn’t matter that much if it is cloud or traditionally hosted.) Here’s what I discovered:

  • “A Grain of Truth” – shared hosting
  • “Dune 2 Online” – colocation
  • “Cut the Rope” – cloud/dedicated/custom hosting
  • “Hex GL” – shared/dedicated hosting
  • “Lux Ahoy” – cloud/dedicated hosting
  • “D.E.M.O.” – cloud hosting
  • “BananaBread” – telco hosting
  • “Save the Day” – cloud hosting
  • “Bombermine” – shared hosting
  • “BrowserQuest” – ISP/VPS/Web hosting

As you can see, there’s quite a mixture of hosting provider types, ranging from shared to large-scale ISP/telco to cloud. The physical requirements for these types of HTML5 games rely mainly on the end user and the capabilities of the specific device. However, if any of these HTML5 games were to take off in popularity, the game owner would need to scale its infrastructure to handle the increased demand.

(more…) «Get Your Game On in the Cloud»

How To Enable & Manage the New, Free GoGrid Firewall Service

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013 by

Security and infrastructure don’t always go hand in hand. In fact, many non-adopters of cloud computing have cited the lack of good security as one of the primary reasons they are not wholeheartedly embracing the cloud and all its glory. In some ways, these naysayers are correct: You shouldn’t deploy a cloud or frankly any type of infrastructure without some type of security, whether it’s software-based controls or a hardware device. At GoGrid, it is this desire to overcome security concerns that compelled us to release our free (that’s right FREE) Firewall Service.

When we developed our Firewall Service, we wanted to do more than simply offer a set of blocking rules or a hardware device. We wanted our solution to be centrally managed, easy to use and configure, fully featured, integrated across all our data centers, reliable, programmatically controlled, highly available, flexible, elastic, self-healing…whew! And did I mention, free? As we did for our new Dynamic Load Balancers, we embraced the concepts of software-defined networking (SDN) when architecting our Firewall Service.

Our research showed that for small environments, software-based firewalls (like IPtables or a Windows Firewall) worked just fine, provided the infrastructure didn’t need to scale. Similarly, hardware-based firewalls were great for enterprise-grade installations (but remember, if you get one hardware device, you typically need another one ready as a failover). We wanted to do it better. You can read more about the theory behind our cloud Firewall Service in this article.

As with my previous How To articles, there are 3 easy steps in the Firewall Service setup:

1. Create a Security Group
2. Define
a Policy
3. Add
a Connection

GoGrid’s Firewall Service is distributed and global. That means that once it’s configured, it automatically synchronizes across all our data centers. If you have multiple web servers in multiple GoGrid data centers, you simply define the Security Groups and Policies, connect the servers, and you’re done. Any future policy changes are automatically synchronized to the connected servers. Simple, right? Let’s see how to set up the Firewall Service. (more…) «How To Enable & Manage the New, Free GoGrid Firewall Service»

Public Cloud Infrastructure Continues Gaining Momentum

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013 by

As the prospect of using cloud infrastructure technologies continues to influence decision-makers to adopt hosted services, companies are forced to choose which model they will implement: the private, public or hybrid network. In most cases, organizations are opting for the public cloud, because its multi-tenant environment and low buy-in opportunity lets firms of all sizes embrace the services.

A recent report by Gartner highlighted the progress of the public cloud, noting that it is forecast to generate roughly $131 billion in revenue in 2013, up 18.5 percent from the 2012 value of $111 billion. As executives gain more confidence in the cloud, they will leverage the solutions for a broader range of purposes, hoping to extend the value of the services to more departments and teams within the organization.

Public cloud infrastructure continues gaining momentum

Public cloud infrastructure continues gaining momentum

“The continued growth of the cloud services market will result from the adoption of cloud services for production systems and workloads, in addition to the development and testing scenarios that have led as the most prominent use case for public cloud services to date,” said Ed Anderson, research director at Gartner. “Evidence of this growth is found in the increasing demand for cloud services from end-user organizations, met by an increased supply of cloud services from suppliers.”

Some models garner more appreciation than others
Although the majority of the public cloud market is forecast to increase, certain segments of the industry will experience faster or more substantial growth than others. Because so many organizations are looking to augment storage, general computing and printing services, for example, the cloud infrastructure portion of the sector is forecast to develop quicker than other services.

Analysts said Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) grew 42.4 percent in 2012 to generate $6.1 billion in revenue and this rate will continue into this year, expanding 47.3 percent to $9 billion in revenue. This rapid evolution will make IaaS the fastest-growing cloud segment of the global market.

(more…) «Public Cloud Infrastructure Continues Gaining Momentum»

10 Cloud Resolutions for 2013

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013 by

It’s the New Year! Have you resolved to get in better shape? How about the shape of your business? Are you going to keep trudging along at the same pace with the same old hardware clogging up your data center? Don’t you think it’s time to look to the future and get a head start on your competition by moving to cloud computing?

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In case you’re still shaking the cobwebs out of your head from the holiday celebrations, I’ve put together a list of 10 cloud resolutions for 2013. Just pick a few of these to help you and your business start 2013 right!

  1. I resolve to spend less time in the data center and get my hearing back. Have you ever walked around a data center? You can’t talk without shouting, and you can easily catch a cold from the refrigeration needed to keep all those machines running cool. Besides, if you spend too long in there, you’ll tend to speak a lot louder in the regular world.
  2. I resolve to ensure other people understand that clouds aren’t just those fluffy things in the sky. It seems that many people still think clouds are what produce rain or sometimes block the sun. But more and more companies are turning to the cloud to solve real business problems.
  3. I resolve to donate my unused hardware to charity instead of letting it gather cobwebs in my data center. When you use cloud computing, you can control your spend and use of server resources at a much finer level. And because you “lease” the virtual resources, you can afford to give up the physical ones.
  4. I resolve to understand the difference between SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS so I don’t sound like an “aaS.” There’s a difference between software vs. platforms vs. infrastructure as a service. Think varying levels of control and capabilities.
  5. I resolve to better forecast my infrastructure use instead of just rolling the dice. You wouldn’t build a house without a budget, and you shouldn’t build out infrastructure without knowing how much you’re going to use it.
  6. I resolve to take more vacations while managing my infrastructure remotely. With the cloud, you can get out of that loud data center and into the real world. The nice thing about having scalable, controllable infrastructure is being able to manage it remotely from a web browser using an API or a mobile application.
  7. I resolve to scale my flexible infrastructure much the same way my tummy scales after the holiday (thank goodness for sweatpants)! Programmatic control of your infrastructure and IT spend means you now have the flexibility to adapt your business to market conditions and customer demands.
  8. I resolve to convince my IT department to get their heads out of the clouds and invest in the cloud. If your IT department is still manually provisioning out-of-date physical servers that take weeks or months to deploy, it’s high time they look into cloud computing so they can focus on other stuff.
  9. I resolve to stop throwing my cash out the window by spending it on physical hardware. The cloud lets you to control your costs and requisition virtual environments on-demand.
  10. I resolve to test out GoGrid’s high-performing cloud infrastructure. It’s the start of a new year, and time to start a new cloud project! Contact a GoGrid cloud specialist for a $100 service credit to help you get started, and be sure to mention this cloud resolutions blog post!

Happy 2013! May our clouds help produce success for your business this year!

Cloud Worries Dissolving with Service Provider Assistance

Monday, December 31st, 2012 by

Today’s cloud computing world is rapidly maturing, especially as more users migrate mission-critical resources to the hosted environment. As the cloud continues to evolve, many decision-makers will become increasingly confident in the technology’s ability to keep sensitive assets protected, enabling vendors to watch their services reach full-scale adoption.

A recent study by KPMG International highlighted this ongoing phenomenon, noting that cloud computing revenue will double in size during the next two years, largely because companies are moving more mission-critical, data-rich applications to hosted environments.

Cloud worries dissolving with service provider assistance

Cloud worries dissolving with service provider assistance

In the past, decision-makers were somewhat intimidated by the cloud. In today’s world, executives are less worried about falsified security concerns and more interested in saving money, as roughly 60 percent of service providers said cost savings was the primary driver behind the adoption of their offerings, KPMG reported.

“While providers are seeing the challenges of a maturing, yet still relatively young, market, we are at a pivotal point in the evolution of the cloud ecosystem as users become more comfortable with a variety of cloud applications,” said Gary Matuszak, an executive at KPMG’s technology, media and telecommunications practice. “Leading cloud providers know they must evolve to provide a new level of scale, capacity and capability.”

Addressing challenges in the industry
The primary difficulty most service providers are having is supplying evidence to users about real cost-saving opportunities, as only 39 percent of vendors believe cloud users have a realistic idea of the cost-reducing capability of the cloud, KPMG noted.

(more…) «Cloud Worries Dissolving with Service Provider Assistance»