DDoS, the Cloud, Digital Transformation Hot Topics at the Gartner Data Center, Infrastructure & Operations Management Conference 2016

Carl Levine
December 15, 2016

This year, over 2,000 IT leaders and practitioners descended on Las Vegas for the Gartner Data Center, Infrastructure & Operations Management Conference 2016. In a year where we have seen some significant – even market changing – events in our industry, it's no surprise that DDoS and resiliency, the cloud, and digital transformation dominated much of the conversation. Here is a brief rundown of some of the topics:
 
DDoS and DNS Resiliency: You may recall a few months back the Internet sort of stopped working across a wide swath of the US and other places around the globe. The cause? A mega DDoS attack credited to the Mirai botnet. Most of us know the back-story on this one. Nonetheless, the game has certainly changed for infrastructure and operations professionals charged with keeping their digital business online.
 
CIO and other IT leaders have long forgotten about some of the fundamental components of their application stack – like DNS – but now that fairly sophisticated mega DDoS attacks (over 1 tbps) can be fairly easily launched at both service providers and enterprises themselves, DNS and it importance to the business is now top of mind.
 
There is still a lot of work to do here to educate the market, but the need to eliminate single points of failure in the application delivery stack – in particular DNS – is quite clear. Application developers, site reliability engineers, and IT leaders who oversee digital applications should take a look at this recorded webinar to get a better understanding of what options they have when deploying a redundant DNS solution.
 
The Cloud: Many enterprises are actively looking to move from the traditional data center and appliance-based models to more robust and cost-effective cloud solutions. At the same time there are a lot of questions involving the risk, costs, and benefits of moving to the cloud as well as how to build and execute on a cloud migration strategy.
 
Many enterprises are opting to utilize a hybrid cloud model that allows them to migrate some of their applications and services to the cloud while keeping others on premises. One area where there appears to be a great deal of interest on this hybrid model is with global server load balancing. As enterprises are not ideally equipped to run their own robust authoritative DNS service, many are looking for ways to leverage cloud service providers to manage their global traffic while continuing to use their local managers in the data center.
 
This makes sense, saves money, and eliminates the need to run your own authoritative DNS. At the same time it enables the enterprise to take advantage of the robust infrastructure, dedicated NOCs, and security capabilities baked into cloud offerings.
 
Digital Transformation: One of the biggest changes to hit the enterprise in recent years is how quickly and easily disruptors can take on an established player. To some extent the tables have turned and now lean and agile startups can innovate and deliver much faster than their enterprise counterparts. Digital transformation is designed to change all of that and enable the enterprise to deliver customer-facing applications at speed and streamline the traditional waterfall build, test, deploy model.
 
A number of frameworks like, Agile, DevOps, and Infrastructure as Code, exist to help facilitate IT leaders and practitioners who are charged with developing and executing on digital transformation strategies. However, these frameworks often assume that the tools that enterprises have to work with have the built-in automation and integration capabilities to make digital transformation possible from a technical perspective.
 
In many cases – especially in the infrastructure space – products are not designed with an API-first architecture and have limited integration capabilities. Buyer beware: robust API’s and integrations are critical to building automation in your ecosystem. Ensure your tech team evaluates these capabilities and don’t rely on vendor claims alone.
 
We look forward to seeing you at next year’s show where we will be a sponsor and have a spot in the exhibit hall. Until then, please check out our events page to see what we have coming up.

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