The Seven Deadly Sins of Cloud Computing

    Too many IT organizations are taking a narrow approach to cloud computing that not only threatens to lock them into one particular platform, but also serves to constrain the development of the IT organization itself.

    Those are just two of the major conclusions of a list of "Seven Deadly Sins of Cloud Computing" that rPath, a provider of IT automation tools, created to help IT organizations better comprehend the real potential of cloud computing.

    According to rPath CTO Brett Adam, to many, IT organizations are essentially taking an approach to cloud computing that does little more than “put some lipstick on virtualization.” They are not really developing an elastic cloud that allows applications to not only dynamically scale up or scale down, or one that includes a bevy of self-service capabilities based on automated provisioning of IT resources.

    Obviously, a lot of IT organizations are under an intense amount of pressure to get a cloud computing strategy in place. But in response to that pressure, many of them are simply deploying virtualization management tools on top of a particular virtual machine environment and calling that a cloud, which is also known as “cloudwashing” an existing IT infrastructure. The biggest danger associated with that tactical approach is that it can easily lock an IT organization into a particular virtual machine platform that may prove costly to deploy at scale later on.

    At the same time, not having a real cloud computing strategy hinders the development of the IT organization, says Adam, because of an over-reliance on manual processes that were originally developed for what is rapidly becoming a bygone era of enterprise computing.

    Ultimately, Adam says cloud computing will transform enterprise IT, but right now many IT organizations are simply trying to buy some time to create isolated clouds within their enterprise that ultimately do little to improve the total cost of delivering IT services.

    The Seven Deadly Sins of Cloud Computing - slide 1

    Click through for the seven deadly sins of cloud computing, as identified by rPath.

    The Seven Deadly Sins of Cloud Computing - slide 2

    If you focus on optimizing infrastructure for service delivery, you’re not solving the biggest problem for the enterprise — service bottlenecks. Service bottlenecks most often arise when the process of deploying and updating applications is broken, and deploying more IT infrastructure will not fix that problem.

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    For those that think the use of scripted stack assembly is sufficient automation, understand the reliability risks you face with this philosophy when magnified at cloud scale. Learn how to make automation a core component of your cloud strategy at the onset to deliver consistent, reliable and accurate deployments and updates throughout your cloud network.

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    There are many who think they will be able to maintain golden images in a cloud environment, but this is a misconception – at cloud scale, image management becomes highly error-prone. Learn how to minimize image degradation with the implementation of version-controlled blueprints.

    The Seven Deadly Sins of Cloud Computing - slide 5

    Creating a cloud infrastructure without ensuring interoperability equates to added costs, risk and ramp-up time whenever you want to leverage new technology. Learn why a cloud infrastructure built on “open” technology can minimize integration headaches while speeding deployment and future-proofing your investment.

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    For those who manage process and change manually, the road is long and fraught with human error. Learn how a push-of-the-button, repeatable change management solution offers enormous time savings, greater accuracy and absolute reliability.

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    The old IT model of entering tickets for service will quickly turn into a bottleneck at cloud scale – and the alternative of letting lines of business loose on your infrastructure will create a big mess. You need an automated solution that lets your clients request services in a controlled fashion.

    The Seven Deadly Sins of Cloud Computing - slide 8

    Without visibility into your environment – past and present – you’ll keep making the same mistakes. Learn how centralized version control gives you visibility into what you have and where it’s located, preparing you for where you want to go.

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