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Gold-Medal Tech, Your Cloud Shopping List | @CloudExpo #IaaS #Cloud #DataCenter

Cloud computing adoption and money spent on it continues to rise across enterprises

Weekly Packet: Gold-Medal Tech, Your Cloud Shopping List
By Christine Cignoli

I just had to write an Olympic-themed headline, since today is the first day of the 2016 Summer Games! I love the Olympics. It's so much fun watching athletes do what they're best at. Plus, they have the extra challenge this year of swimming or boating in polluted, mucky water-so it's even more impressive for the winners, I suppose. Technology is charging forward in sports, like everywhere else. New at this year's Olympic Games are underwater lap counters for swimmers and an infrastructure powered by cloud computing, with a full disaster recovery center ready off-site. Keep an eye on network traffic these next few weeks when employees are streaming Olympic events during lunch.

Gartner released its 2016 Magic Quadrant for Cloud IaaS this week. In this market, AWS reigns supreme, with Microsoft Azure running second. Cloud computing adoption and money spent on it continues to rise across enterprises, so the niche players are looking to stake out ground in a robust market. If you're shopping around for cloud services, it's worth noting how Gartner categorizes public cloud Infrastructure as a Service offerings, with both storage and network elements shared. Even private cloud IaaS uses a shared network, though, so either way you'll need to plan ahead for monitoring those networks (in addition to monitoring the cloud service). Beware noisy neighbors.

For public cloud shoppers, also note Gartner's descriptions of SLAs and what's expected or standard in them. They mention that service credits for outages are typically non-negotiable, and that maintenance windows aren't usually part of SLAs. The devil is in the detail with SLAs, so pay attention to Gartner's notes on compute and network availability, performance and oversubscription, and customer service expectations. See if your SLAs line up with these recommendations, or use them for your next SLA negotiation.

In China, consumer technology advances are pulling ahead of those in the West, according to a New York Times story this week. Uber threw up the white flag this week, too, when it sold its China operations to a local competitor. Enterprise computing still relies on American tech for the most part, though, according to the Times. With China's firewall, there are a lot of interesting challenges-and potential-for Western firms operating in China. The Great Firewall of China can be a tricky barrier, but technology, including ours, is making inroads so that businesses can see into their China operations.

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