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For secure data backup, here’s how to do the 3-2-1 rule right

As the number of places where we store data increases, the basic concept of what is referred to as the 3-2-1 rule often gets forgotten. This is a problem, because the 3-2-1 rule is easily one of the most foundational concepts for designing data protection. It's important to understand why the rule was created, and how it's currently being interpreted in an increasingly tapeless world.What is the 3-2-1 rule for backup? The 3-2-1 rule says there should be at least three copies or versions of data stored on two different pieces of media, one of which is off-site. Let's take a look at each of the three elements and what it addresses.[Get regularly scheduled insights by signing up for Network World newsletters.] 3 copies or versions: Having at least three different versions of your data over different periods of time ensures that you can recover from accidents that affect multiple versions. Any good backup system will have many more than three copies. 2 different media: You should not have both copies of your data on the same media. Consider, for example, Apple's Time Machine. You can fool it using Disc Utility to split your hard drive into Continue reading

Japanese firm announces potential 80TB hard drives

Hard drive makers are staving off obsolescence to solid-state drives (SSDs) by offering capacities that are simply not feasible in an SSD. Seagate and Western Digital are both pushing to release 20TB hard disks in the next few years. A 20TB SSD might be doable but also cost more than a new car.But Showa Denko K.K. of Japan has gone one further with the announcement of its next-generation of heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR) media for hard drives. The platters use all-new magnetic thin films to maximize their data density, with the goal of eventually enabling 70TB to 80TB hard drives in a 3.5-inch form factor.[Get regularly scheduled insights by signing up for Network World newsletters.] Showa Denko is the world’s largest independent maker of platters for hard drives, selling them to basically anyone left making hard drives not named Seagate and Western Digital. Those two make their own platters and are working on their own next-generation drives for release in the coming years.While similar in concept, Seagate and Western Digital have chosen different solutions to the same problem. HAMR, championed by Seagate and Showa, works by temporarily heating the disk material during the write Continue reading

IBM consolidates storage products under a single brand

IBM says it is consolidating its Storwize and the Flash Systems lines of storage products under a single family, the FlashSystem, that will span from entry level to advanced. It also announced a trio of all-flash storage products, spanning a range of use cases.Eric Herzog, chief marketing officer and vice president of worldwide storage channels for IBM storage, made the announcing in a pair of blog posts here and here. He noted that different organizations have different requirements for storage, and that storage vendors have traditionally responded with unique storage platforms to meet themTo read this article in full, please click here

Server sales projected to decline 10% due to coronavirus

Global server sales had been projected to grow by 1.2% compared to the most recent quarter, but the chaos wrought by the coronavirus in China will cause sales to decline 9.8% sequentially, according to DigiTimes Research.DigiTimes is an IT publication based in Taiwan. Its proximity to Taiwanese and Chinese vendors gives it some good sources, but it can also be way off target. However, the signs are piling up that coronavirus is causing some real mayhem.For example, DigiTimes also reported that less than 20% of Chinese factory employees would return to work after an extended Lunar New Year break due to the coronavirus outbreak, and that many components plants in China have decided not to restart production until February 25.To read this article in full, please click here

Who should lead the push for IoT security?

The ease with which internet of things devices can be compromised, coupled with the potentially extreme consequences of breaches, have prompted action from legislatures and regulators, but what group is best to decide?Both the makers of IoT devices and governments are aware of the security issues, but so far they haven’t come up with standardized ways to address them.[Get regularly scheduled insights by signing up for Network World newsletters.] “The challenge of this market is that it’s moving so fast that no regulation is going to be able to keep pace with the devices that are being connected,” said Forrester vice president and research director Merritt Maxim. “Regulations that are definitive are easy to enforce and helpful, but they’ll quickly become outdated.”To read this article in full, please click here

Game changers at the branch: Wi-Fi 6, 4G, 5G plus SD-WAN

Combining 4G and 5G cellular services with SD-WAN can give enterprise IT pros connectivity options that are faster than wired alternatives such as MPLS and that provide benefits including rapid provisioning, improved reliability and more bandwidth for less money.Branch offices, which are undergoing dramatic changes in the amount of traffic they generate and where that traffic goes, can particularly benefit from 4G and 5G, and one enabler is software-defined WAN.To read this article in full, please click here

VMware sees executive churn amid small layoffs

VMware is going through an annual ritual it calls “workforce rebalancing,” which has resulted in a few hundred employees being let go including with four senior executives, which might be concerning as executive churn is often a sign of trouble.On Jan. 25, the California Employment Development Department disclosed that VMware had cut 159 people in the Palo Alto office earlier in January. For a company of more than 22,000, that’s nothing, although there were likely cuts in other offices around the world as well.[Get regularly scheduled insights by signing up for Network World newsletters.] “We can confirm that there have been a limited number of changes to our workforce this month,” a VMware spokesperson said via email. “This is a part of regular workforce rebalancing that ensures resources across VMware’s global businesses and geographies are aligned with strategic objectives and customer needs. We have an active employee support program to ensure, where possible, impacted employees will be redeployed to open roles within VMware. We continue to recruit in areas of strategic importance for the company.To read this article in full, please click here

VMware: sees executive churn, some layoffs

VMware is going through an annual ritual it calls “workforce rebalancing,” which has resulted in a few hundred employees being let go including with four senior executives, which might be concerning as executive churn is often a sign of trouble.On Jan. 25, the California Employment Development Department disclosed that VMware had cut 159 people in the Palo Alto office earlier in January. For a company of more than 22,000, that’s nothing, although there were likely cuts in other offices around the world as well.[Get regularly scheduled insights by signing up for Network World newsletters.] “We can confirm that there have been a limited number of changes to our workforce this month,” a VMware spokesperson said via email. “This is a part of regular workforce rebalancing that ensures resources across VMware’s global businesses and geographies are aligned with strategic objectives and customer needs. We have an active employee support program to ensure, where possible, impacted employees will be redeployed to open roles within VMware. We continue to recruit in areas of strategic importance for the company.To read this article in full, please click here

VMware: Executive churn, some layoffs

VMware is going through an annual ritual it calls “workforce rebalancing,” which has resulted in a few hundred employees being let go including with four senior executives, which might be concerning as executive churn is often a sign of trouble.On Jan. 25, the California Employment Development Department disclosed that VMware had cut 159 people in the Palo Alto office earlier in January. For a company of more than 22,000, that’s nothing, although there were likely cuts in other offices around the world as well.[Get regularly scheduled insights by signing up for Network World newsletters.] “We can confirm that there have been a limited number of changes to our workforce this month,” a VMware spokesperson said via email. “This is a part of regular workforce rebalancing that ensures resources across VMware’s global businesses and geographies are aligned with strategic objectives and customer needs. We have an active employee support program to ensure, where possible, impacted employees will be redeployed to open roles within VMware. We continue to recruit in areas of strategic importance for the company.To read this article in full, please click here

Private equity firms are gobbling up data centers

Merger and acquisition activity surrounding data-center facilities is starting to resemble the Oklahoma Land Rush, and private-equity firms are taking most of the action.New research from Synergy Research Group saw more than 100 deals in 2019, a 50% growth over 2018, and private-equity companies accounted for 80% of them.[Get regularly scheduled insights by signing up for Network World newsletters.] M&A activity broke the 100 transaction mark for the first time in 2019, and that comes despite a 45% decline in public company activity, such as the massive Digital Reality Trust purchase of Interxion. At the same time, the size of the deals dropped in 2019, with fewer worth $1 billion or more vs. 2018, and the average deal value fell 24% vs. 2018.To read this article in full, please click here

IBM’s CEO Virginia Rometty to be replaced by its cloud, Red Hat chiefs

If anyone was still wondering how serious IBM is about being a major cloud player that question was resoundly answered this week when its current cloud and cognitive-software leader Arvind Krishna and Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst to be CEO and president, respectively, to replace long-time CEO Virginia Rometty.Krishna, 57, was a principal architect of IBM’s $34 billion acquisition of Red Hat last year and is currently IBM’s senior vice president of Cloud and Cognitive Software, which has become the company’s palpable future.   [Get regularly scheduled insights by signing up for Network World newsletters.] The Red Hat acquisition not only made Big Blue a bigger open-source and enterprise-software player, but mostly it got IBM into the lucrative hybrid-cloud business, targeting huge cloud competitor Google, Amazon and Microsoft among others. Gartner says that market will be worth $240 billion by next year.To read this article in full, please click here

Cisco offers on-prem Kubernets-as-a-Service to challenge public cloud

Cisco says it will offer a Kubernetes-based “container-as-a-service” for its HyperFlex hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) environment.The turnkey system, called HyperFlex Application Platform (HXAP), is Kubernetes at its core and includes all manner of integrated tools such as container networking, storage, a load balancer and more to let customers install, manage, and maintain a complete platform for cloud-native application development, Cisco stated.See predictions about what's big in IT tech for the coming year. HyperFlex is Cisco’s HCI that offers computing, networking and storage resources in a single system.To read this article in full, please click here

Cisco offers on-prem Kubernetes-as-a-Service to challenge public cloud

Cisco says it will offer a Kubernetes-based “container-as-a-service” for its HyperFlex hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) environment.The turnkey system, called HyperFlex Application Platform (HXAP), is Kubernetes at its core and includes all manner of integrated tools such as container networking, storage, a load balancer and more to let customers install, manage, and maintain a complete platform for cloud-native application development, Cisco stated.See predictions about what's big in IT tech for the coming year. HyperFlex is Cisco’s HCI that offers computing, networking and storage resources in a single system.To read this article in full, please click here

Intel denies reports of Xeon shortage

Intel has denied reports that its Xeon supply chain is suffering the same constraints as its PC desktop/laptop business. CEO Bob Swan said during the company's recent earnings call that its inventory was depleted but customers are getting orders.The issue blew up last week when HPE – one of Intel's largest server OEM partners – reportedly told UK-based publication The Register that there were supply constraints with Cascade Lake processors, the most recent generation of Xeon Scalable processors, and urged HPE customers "to consider alternative processors." HPE did not clarify if it meant Xeon processors other than Cascade Lake or AMD Epyc processors.To read this article in full, please click here

You can now have a Mac Pro in your data center

Steve Jobs rather famously said he hated the enterprise because the people who use the product have no say in its purchase. Well, Apple's current management has adopted the enterprise, ever so slowly, and is now shipping its first server in years. Sort of.Apple introduced a new version of the Mac Pro in December 2019, after a six-year gap in releases, and said it would make the computer rack-mountable for data centers. But at the time, all the attention was on the computer’s aesthetics, because it looked like a cheese grater. The other bit of focus was on the price; a fully decked Mac Pro cost an astronomical $53,799. Granted, that did include specs like 1.5TB of DRAM and 8TB of SSD storage. Those are impressive specs for a server, although the price is still a little crazy.To read this article in full, please click here

Cisco helps IT and DevOps troubleshoot hybrid-cloud apps

Cisco has taken the wraps off of new tools it says will boost on-premises or cloud application performance by helping IT and devops work together to automate and more quickly resolve software problems.The new tools include a package from Cisco AppDynamics that lets customers track the key components users interact with as they use enterprise applications. Cisco paid $3.7 billion for AppDynamics three years ago for its application-performance monitoring and problem-resolution automation technology.  The idea was to develop products and applications that would give customers better end-to-end visibility of the IT infrastructure, including cloud, devices, security, network, compute and applications.To read this article in full, please click here

Hybrid cloud management requires new tools, skills

Hybrid cloud environments can deliver an array of benefits, but in many enterprises, they're becoming increasingly complex and difficult to manage. To cope, adopters typically turn to some type of management software. What soon becomes apparent, however, is that hybrid cloud management tools can be as complex and confounding as the environments they're designed to support.A hybrid cloud typically includes a mix of computing, storage and other services. The environment is formed by a combination of on-premises infrastructure resources, private cloud services, and one or more public cloud offerings, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Microsoft Azure, as well as orchestration among the various platforms.To read this article in full, please click here

Hybrid-cloud management requires new tools, skills

Hybrid cloud environments can deliver an array of benefits, but in many enterprises, they're becoming increasingly complex and difficult to manage. To cope, adopters typically turn to some type of management software. What soon becomes apparent, however, is that hybrid cloud management tools can be as complex and confounding as the environments they're designed to support.A hybrid cloud typically includes a mix of computing, storage and other services. The environment is formed by a combination of on-premises infrastructure resources, private cloud services, and one or more public cloud offerings, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Microsoft Azure, as well as orchestration among the various platforms.To read this article in full, please click here

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