Coping with the Complexity of Modern Enterprise IT

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IT Complexity on the Rise

Despite virtualization, a new survey makes it clear that IT environments are more complex than ever.

While interest in private cloud computing is definitely on the rise, a lot of IT organizations are not necessarily prepared for the complexity associated with managing environments where applications regularly share access to the same IT infrastructure.

In fact, many IT organizations today are struggling to manage virtual machine environments. While private cloud computing depends heavily on those virtualization technologies, the complexity of managing private clouds is exponentially higher because the overall environment calls for not only being elastic, but also giving users the ability to self service their own IT needs.

A new survey of 250 IT executives from Information Technology Intelligence Corp. (ITIC) that was conducted on behalf of Stratus Technologies, a provider of fault-tolerant servers, finds that 29 percent of the respondents said that their IT environments have increased substantially, while another 48 percent said complexity has increased somewhat.

As virtualization and cloud computing continues to increase, it's pretty certain that the complexity of the overall IT environment is only going to increase. There's a certain irony in that two technologies, virtualization and cloud computing, offer so much in terms of lowering IT infrastructure costs, but wind up costing IT organizations so much more to manage overall.

Roy Sanford, chief marketing officer for Stratus, says that all the inherent complexity of most IT environments means that all it takes is for one single failure to create a series of cascading events throughout the entire environment. As a result, Sanford says interest in high availability in the cloud is on the rise, which he says starts with having the right fault-tolerant IT infrastructure in place.

In the meantime, the survey notes that the number of applications that are considered mission-critical by the business is on the rise, which also means that the number of opportunities that the IT organization has to disrupt those applications is exponentially increasing as well.