Networking as the Weakest Cloud Computing Link

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Cloud Computing Adoption Is Slow but Steady

For all the talk about cloud computing, most IT organizations are not all that far along in terms of actual adoption.

In fact, a recent survey of 1,300 IT professionals conducted by Cisco found that one of biggest inhibitors to cloud computing adoption is the readiness of the network in terms of being able to support cloud application availability.

The fact that the network is such an issue may not be all that surprising when you consider it's less expensive to ship a 1TB drive overnight to someone than it is transfer that data across a wide area network. And yet, the survey finds that the number one thing that IT organizations want to put into the cloud is storage, which may say more about how chronic a problem storage has become than the actual viability of the cloud.

According to Inbar Lasser-Raab, senior marketing director for the Cisco Services Routing Technology Group, a majority of organizations that intend to make use of cloud computing on any serious level are probably going to wind up upgrading their networks. Given the number of IT professionals who said they would be making more significant use of the cloud in 2012, that may be happening sooner than later.

Of course, two-thirds of those surveyed also said they'd rather get a root canal, dig a ditch or do their own taxes than address network challenges associated with public or private cloud deployments. That may suggest that all those folks who also said it would take them less than six months to complete a cloud project are wildly optimistic about the state of their existing network. If so, that would seem to indicate that a lot of the cloud computing projects currently under way are going to be sliding into 2013 before they see completion.