Category Archives for "Network World Data Center"

Face of Chinese IT industry doesn’t please everyone at German trade show

Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba Group, made his first visit to the Cebit trade show 14 years ago, pitching Chinese products to Westerners from a small booth that attracted few visitors.Eight years ago, he returned, that time hoping to interest European companies in an online marketplace. That didn’t work out, because people saw the Internet and trade fairs as competitors.Now, though, Ma has it made. China’s tech industry, of which his company is one of the leaders, is a guest of honor at this year’s show, and Ma was the industry star of Sunday night’s Cebit opening ceremony, where he told the story of his previous visits.Feted during the opening ceremony, Ma would have been jeered on Monday morning had he been among the first through the gates. Two groups of protestors greeted visitors, one from Amnesty International, the other from Germany’s Society for Threatened Peoples. Both were unhappy about how the Chinese government orders companies to censor the Internet.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

7 things we want to see in the Surface Pro 4

Surface Pro 4Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 has become a surprise hit, bringing in more than $900 million in revenue, according to industry analysts, and generating such enthusiasm that fans are looking forward to the next version. The Surface Pro 3 was designed to present Windows 8.1 at its best, so it’s expected that its successor will serve as a showcase for Windows 10, which could come out as early as this summer. Perhaps a “Surface Pro 4” will debut at the same time or soon after Windows 10 launches. Here’s what we’d like to see in the Surface Pro 4.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

New products of the week 03.16.2015

New products of the weekOur roundup of intriguing new products. Read how to submit an entry to Network World's products of the week slideshow. Allworx ConnectPricing: Connect 320: $1,230; Connect 324: $1,355; Connect 530: $1,665; Connect 536: $1,875; Connect 731: $3,250To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

German industry is poised to exploit rural broadband

Internet speeds of 50Mbps are nothing but a pipe dream for most inhabitants of Britain, while even 5Mbps would be a welcome boost for many living in remote areas.Yet by 2018, German Chancellor Angela Merkel wants all Germans, even those in rural communities, to have access to 50Mbps broadband connections, she said at the opening ceremony of the Cebit trade show on Sunday.This ambitious goal, if attained, could revolutionize many aspects of farming and forestry, allowing a transition from practices based on intuition and tradition to those based on big data and analytics.And German businesses, including century-old agricultural machinery maker Claas, enterprise software specialist SAP, and a new generation of mobile app developers, are ready to take advantage of it.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

German IT spending forecast to rise on eve of industry’s biggest trade show

IT spending is forecast to rise faster than previously expected in Germany, a bellwether for European industry, while IT sector jobs there will total almost one million by year-end. However, forthcoming legislation could have a chilling effect, industry association Bitkom warned.The news will put a smile on the faces of exhibitors and visitors at the giant Cebit trade show in Hanover, Germany, which opens Monday.Last year, 26,000 new jobs were created in the German IT industry, more than the 10,000 expected, Bitkom said. It expects 21,000 more will find employment in the industry by year end, taking the total to 990,000.The faster-than-expected rise in employment last year has prompted the association to raise its forecast for German IT spending on IT, telecommunications and consumer electronics this year to €155.5 billion (US$163 billion), up 1.5 percent year on year compared to an earlier growth forecast of 0.6 percent.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Facebook acquires The Find e-commerce search engine

Facebook has acquired The Find, a nine-year-old company with a search engine that indexes products across thousands of e-commerce sites.The deal, the value of which was not disclosed, was announced in a post on The Find’s website.“Key members of our team are joining the company and will be working hard to integrate our technology to make the ads you see on Facebook every day better and more relevant to you,” the company said.That probably means the ads Facebook users see will be more relevant to products they’ve been browsing and buying online, perhaps highlighting local retailers. One of The Find’s features is that it attempts to mix online and local stores and says its results are based on “your social profile.”To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

MacBook makes a case for wireless docking — but too soon

The new MacBook is supposed to usher in a wire-free future for laptops, but Apple left out technologies that could have saved road warriors a few ungainly wires.“The only intelligent vision for the future of the notebook is one without wires, where you don’t have to plug up cables to connect to things,” Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller said as he introduced the MacBook on Monday.But while he crowed about the IEEE 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 built into the laptop, Schiller never mentioned that Apple passed on emerging technologies to make a USB connection over the air or wirelessly link peripherals at 7Gbps (bits per second).To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Intel to ship built-to-order Xeon D chips in second half

Intel will start offering custom chips based on the Xeon D starting in the second half of this year, making it easier to tailor servers to process specific workloads.Intel this week announced Xeon D chips for servers, storage and networking, but the four- and eight-core chips have a fixed set of components and features. The built-to-order chips later this year will be tailored to customer specifications, and to needs in storage, networking and web serving.For example, Intel will be able to customize chips to include components such as FPGAs (field-programmable gate arrays), which are reprogrammable chips used for specific tasks. For example, Microsoft uses FPGAs in servers to boost the accuracy of search results in Bing. Bringing FPGAs inside Xeon D could make the chip more versatile.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

This isn’t your father’s enterprise software

When Patrick Benson joined Ovation Brands back in September 2013, he was given a tall order: modernize an array of legacy IT systems that could no longer keep up with the restaurant-chain conglomerate’s business processes.“I was strapped to a rocket and shot out of a cannon,” said Benson, the company’s CIO. “My job was to figure out what tools were needed.”Originally founded in 1983 under the name Old Country Buffet, Ovation had grown considerably over the years to comprise more than 300 restaurants in 35 states, operating under brands including Tahoe Joe’s Famous Steakhouse and Ryan’s.“We were conducting business in a much different way that was better and faster than our systems could keep up with,” Benson explained.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

If you hate PC bloatware, here are the vendors to avoid

Lenovo may have publicly buried bloatware, but it’s anything but dead. After the company’s Superfish scandal, we shopped Best Buy and found it alive and well on major vendors’ PC offerings. A little research should save you from the worst of it, though. Here’s what we learned. Bloatware is as bloatware does We call it bloatware, but PC executives make clear that they install software on PCs to benefit consumers and pad tiny profit margins. The vast majority is harmless (if obnoxious), and some, such as a year’s subscription to Microsoft’s Office 365, arguably increase a PC’s value without increasing the price.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Amazon acquires IoT platform developer 2lemetry has acquired 2lemetry, a startup that has developed a platform for the integration of connected devices across enterprises, as it expands on its Internet of Things strategy.“We can confirm that Amazon has acquired 2lemetry, and we look forward to continuing to support 2lemetry customers,” a spokeswoman for Amazon wrote in an email Friday.2lemetry said on its website that its existing service had not changed and it would offer the same customer support after the acquisition by Amazon. It would retain its existing name and branding, it added.The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.Founded in 2011, the company describes its core technology as an IoT version of Enterprise Application Integration middleware solutions, “providing device connectivity at scale, cross-communication, data brokering and storage.” It also offers companies the ability to manage and analyze the captured data through predictive computational models and a configurable rules engine, according to its website.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

PC sales may be worse than expected this year

PC shipments are forecast to drop by 4.9 percent this year, more than the 3.3 percent fall earlier predicted, IDC said Thursday.Earlier in the day, Intel, the key chipmaker for the PC business, said its first quarter revenue would be around US$12.8 billion, down from the about $13.7 billion it had earlier expected, citing weaker than anticipated demand for business desktop PCs and lower than expected inventory levels in the PC supply chain.About 293 million PCs are expected to be shipped this year, according to IDC. The PC market dropped in value by 0.8 percent to $201 billion in 2014, and is expected to drop by another 6.9 percent in 2015, IDC said. Smaller declines in subsequent years are expected to take the total market to $175 billion by 2019.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

IDG Contributor Network: Optical fiber soon to see performance gains

We're seeing a surge in successful experiments with alternative, atom-thin materials that are going to speed up and reduce the size of computer chips. Black phosphorus is the latest super-material that promises efficiency in electronics. This one promises speed gains too.Adding the substance, commonly found in match heads and tracer bullets, to optical circuits made out of silicon increases data speeds, according to a University of Minnesota research team, and reported by Dexter Johnson in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers' IEEE Spectrum publication.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

First look: VMware vSphere 6 keeps its edge

In the not so distant past, VMware held a long and commanding lead in the server virtualization space, offering core features that were simply unmatched by the competition. In the past few years, however, competition in virtualization has been fierce, the competitors have drawn near, and VMware has been left with fewer ways to distinguish itself.The competition may have grown over the years, and VMware may not enjoy quite as large a lead as it once did -- but it still enjoys a lead. With useful improvements to a number of key features, as well as the bundling of functions such as backup and recovery that were previously available separately, vSphere 6 is a worthy addition to the vSphere line. That said, some of the major advances in this version, such as long-distance vMotion, will matter most to larger vSphere shops.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Qualcomm’s Raspberry Pi-like computer has wireless capabilities

Raspberry Pi has inspired many board computers, and Qualcomm is now offering one of its own with a range of features never before seen in the low-price end of the market.The DragonBoard 410c is an uncased computer a little larger than a credit card, with all the important components on one board. With Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, location tracking and 64-bit Snapdragon chips, it offers many capabilities not yet available in other low-cost boards.Qualcomm is best-known for its smartphone and tablet chips, but the board could be used to make robots, drones and wearables. The chip maker’s high-end developer boards have been used to develop self-learning robots.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

VMware expands desktop virtualization to Linux

VMware’s VMware Horizon desktop virtualization software suite will soon deliver virtual Linux desktops over a network, in addition to the Microsoft Windows desktops it has long provided for remote workers.The company has launched an early access program for customers to test a version of Horizon 6 that can package server-based Red Hat and Ubuntu Linux desktops so they can be accessed from remote computers and mobile devices.Although Windows remains the dominant platform for enterprise desktops, at least a small percentage of organizations use Linux instead, according to market reports.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Intel lowers Q1 revenue outlook, citing sluggish PC sales

Intel lowered its revenue outlook for the first quarter and now expects to bring in about US$12.8 billion, down from its previous forecast of about $13.7 billion.Intel attributed the nearly $1 billion [b] downward revision to sluggish sales of business desktop PCs and lowered inventory levels across the PC supply chain. In particular, the “refresh rate” at which small and medium-size businesses are replacing Windows XP computers with newer ones has been slower than expected. Microsoft stopped supporting Windows XP last April.Intel also cited “challenging” macroeconomic and currency conditions, particularly in Europe, for the revised outlook. Intel will update other financial expectations on April 14 when it reports first quarter earnings, but for now those prior expectations should be disregarded since they “have been withdrawn,” the company said.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Juniper rewires the data center

Juniper Networks this week rolled out new data center switches to help customers address opportunities and challenges presented by cloud computing.The new switches are yet another line of data center spine switches that have virtually no integration with Juniper’s three-and-a-half year old QFabric portfolio.Juniper says there will be 7.6 billion Internet users with 50 billion connected devices by 2020, continually accessing data around the globe. This necessitates higher levels of network performance, automation and scale for both enterprises and service providers to address growing demands on their IT infrastructure.+ MORE ON NETWORK WORLD: Juniper unveils new fabric switch, architecture +To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Alibaba investing $200 million in photo-messaging app Snapchat

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group is investing US$200 million in photo-messaging app Snapchat, following a string of prior investments in U.S. tech companies.The companies did not publicly comment on the deal. But a person familiar with the matter confirmed the investment on Thursday.The e-commerce firm has been funding both U.S. and Chinese tech companies, as a way to grow the company’s global ecosystem, the source said.Previous deals made in the U.S. include investing in messaging app Tango, online retail site ShopRunner, and ride-sharing service Lyft.The activity has sparked speculation that the Chinese e-commerce company is preparing to buy its way into the U.S. market. Last week, Alibaba announced it was opening its first data center in Silicon Valley to target the U.S. cloud computing sector.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here