It seems counterintuitive, but the latest designs in IT infrastructure incorporate three ideas that run against the “more is more” tradition of the IT stack. Instead, today’s agile hybrid cloud platform approach is known for being simpler, open and leveraged.
Simpler is not to say that infrastructure designs are being dumbed down. As more functions of the IT stack become software defined and virtual, the actual hardware that executes it is becoming more generic and commoditized. This offers a number of benefits, notably in the way commodity hardware can be repurposed.
Modern data center technologies such as flash, software defined, scale out and API enablement are making platforms radically cheaper to implement, with commodity infrastructure that starts small, grows incrementally, and is operated through improved levels of automation and instrumentation.
Today’s platform is also infinitely easier to leverage according to real-time business needs. A tightly coupled bundle, connected to a network, becomes a defined quantity of storage, computing and memory that can be provisioned into blocks of computing resource. These blocks can be scaled up or down as needed, and turned from one workload to another, automatically and instantly.
The key to all of this is the large-scale use of application programming interfaces (APIs), which erase boundaries between applications, data, networks and platforms.
Given the ability to provision computing resources through self-service, storefront-like interfaces, business units become less tempted to turn to shadow IT. This reduces the complexity and scope of the IT estate. And, with consistent control and governance policies, the overall system — not just the individual instance — is more secure.
The agile hybrid cloud platform translates into business benefits in several other ways:
- An agile compute infrastructure, spanning private and public clouds, allows users to select the right location for workloads without having to compromise with a single option.
- Unified and granular visibility of resource consumption helps address governance, risk and compliance and leads to better workload analysis, placement and, ultimately, cost optimization.
- Hyper-converged private cloud resources can be obtained as a service, which means they can be consumed by business need on an ongoing basis.
The evolution of the agile hybrid cloud platform is good news for IT departments that have found themselves attempting to address the accelerating pace of change with a sprawling, complex and aging IT estate.
The agile hybrid cloud enables a consistent experience across public and private cloud infrastructures. The approach delivers the benefits of a managed service with the level of control a business needs and creates a new center of gravity that better balances today’s business demands.
Read more in the white paper, Agile Hybrid Cloud Platform Enables Digital Success
Chris Swan is CTO for Global Infrastructure Services at CSC, where he directs the vision, strategy and architecture for CSC’s infrastructure and managed services portfolios including cloud, workplace, data center, platform and service management. Chris also leads CSC’s shift towards infrastructure as code and being a data-driven delivery organization. Connect with him on LinkedIn.
Bob Eastham is a Distinguished Architect currently working in the Infrastructure Technology Office responsible for CSC’s platform strategy. Bob has held a number of senior architecture positions across account delivery, new business, strategy and offering development. He has extensive expertise in infrastructure architecture, strategy and integration and solution governance. Connect with him on LinkedIn.