Click here to close now.


Microservices Expo Authors: Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz, Lori MacVittie

Related Topics: Containers Expo Blog, @CloudExpo

Containers Expo Blog: Article

Recession-Proofing IT via Virtualization and Cloud Computing

Recessions are about as appealing as a root canal; but they do force us to think differently

Recessions are about as appealing as a root canal; but they do force us to think differently. Now that the recession is official, it's an ideal time to explore how virtualization and cloud computing can help "recession-proof" IT by transforming yesterday’s costly and rigid computing model to one that puts costs under control and sets applications free.

The National Bureau of Economic Research recently declared that the U.S. has been in a recession since December 2007. The news would be darkly amusing if it weren’t so utterly painful. But now that the recession is official, this seemed to be the ideal time to explore how virtualization and cloud computing can help recession-proof IT. Consider the following four tips:

1. Virtualize infrastructure to increase capacity utilization.

Traditional server infrastructure tightly couples applications to hardware, wasting computing capacity whenever applications utilize less than 100 percent of system resources. Virtualized infrastructure decouples applications from hardware, freeing excess capacity for use by other applications. A single virtualized server can often support 5X the workload of a non-virtualized server. This allows IT to consolidate server infrastructure, which reduces capital costs associated with server acquisition and datacenter infrastructure, as well as operating costs associated with management, maintenance, and energy consumption.

2. Use external clouds to offset capital infrastructure expense.

While virtualized infrastructure can reduce capital expenses, IT may have the opportunity to eliminate those expenses altogether by using the variable compute model of external clouds like Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2). In this model, compute capacity becomes elastic, allowing lines of business to align the cost of application consumption to actual demand. Swapping traditional datacenter for external cloud provides infinitely scalable capacity and the ability to align cost to value received.

3. Virtualize applications to accelerate and simplify deployment.

Packaging and deploying application workloads as virtual images can close the “deployment gap” which adds cost and delay to the deployment of enterprise applications. The virtualized application is separated from its operating infrastructure and a self-contained unit that includes just enough operating system (JeOS), databases, and middleware required to run the software in production. These bits travel with the application package and allow it to run as an image in any virtualized or cloud-based execution environment without any manual setup, tuning, configuration, or certification. Suddenly, applications are set free and deployment cycles are compressed from months to minutes. This equates to cost savings and improved business agility.

4. Construct virtual applications for simplified management, automated maintenance.


The reality is that this new approach to application delivery can create new costs and risks. Taking the friction out of application deployment will lead to an onslaught of volume and demand, resulting in what is often called “VM sprawl.” What organizations must recognize is that they may be exchanging one cost and management burden for another, as physical machines become virtual machines. In fact, virtual sprawl is likely to far outstrip any physical sprawl you’ve witnessed heretofore. As such, organizations need a scalable approach for managing and maintaining application images. Adding headcount isn’t an option, so the answer is finding ways to do more with less. In this case, this means architecting application images for management and control, trading manual one-at-a-time updates for seamless changes that are implemented en masse. It also means complete lifecycle control and transparency wherever the application is being run — datacenter or cloud, internal or external.

Recessions are about as appealing as a root canal. But they do force us to think differently — to take an inventory of costs, retool, reinvent. The reality is that this recession is coincident with a fundamental inflection point in IT. The friction and the economics of traditional computing models no longer work. This is why organizations must embrace virtualization and cloud — both to weather the storm of a down economy and to transform yesterday’s costly and rigid computing model to one that puts costs under control and sets applications free.


More Stories By Jake Sorofman

Jake Sorofman is chief marketing officer of rPath, an innovator in system automation software for physical, virtual and cloud environments. Contact Jake at [email protected]

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

@MicroservicesExpo Stories
The web app is agile. The REST API is agile. The testing and planning are agile. But alas, data infrastructures certainly are not. Once an application matures, changing the shape or indexing scheme of data often forces at best a top down planning exercise and at worst includes schema changes that force downtime. The time has come for a new approach that fundamentally advances the agility of distributed data infrastructures. Come learn about a new solution to the problems faced by software organ...
Between the compelling mockups and specs produced by analysts, and resulting applications built by developers, there exists a gulf where projects fail, costs spiral, and applications disappoint. Methodologies like Agile attempt to address this with intensified communication, with partial success but many limitations. In his session at DevOps Summit, Charles Kendrick, CTO and Chief Architect at Isomorphic Software, will present a revolutionary model enabled by new technologies. Learn how busine...
With containerization using Docker, the orchestration of containers using Kubernetes, the self-service model for provisioning your projects and applications and the workflows we built in OpenShift is the best in class Platform as a Service that enables introducing DevOps into your organization with ease. In his session at DevOps Summit, Veer Muchandi, PaaS evangelist with RedHat, will provide a deep dive overview of OpenShift v3 and demonstrate how it helps with DevOps.
JFrog has announced a powerful technology for managing software packages from development into production. JFrog Artifactory 4 represents disruptive innovation in its groundbreaking ability to help development and DevOps teams deliver increasingly complex solutions on ever-shorter deadlines across multiple platforms JFrog Artifactory 4 establishes a new category – the Universal Artifact Repository – that reflects JFrog's unique commitment to enable faster software releases through the first pla...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Dyn, the worldwide leader in Internet Performance, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Dyn is a cloud-based Internet Performance company. Dyn helps companies monitor, control, and optimize online infrastructure for an exceptional end-user experience. Through a world-class network and unrivaled, objective intelligence into Internet condit...
The last decade was about virtual machines, but the next one is about containers. Containers enable a service to run on any host at any time. Traditional tools are starting to show cracks because they were not designed for this level of application portability. Now is the time to look at new ways to deploy and manage applications at scale. In his session at @DevOpsSummit, Brian “Redbeard” Harrington, a principal architect at CoreOS, will examine how CoreOS helps teams run in production. Attende...
The APN DevOps Competency highlights APN Partners who demonstrate deep capabilities delivering continuous integration, continuous delivery, and configuration management. They help customers transform their business to be more efficient and agile by leveraging the AWS platform and DevOps principles.
Containers are revolutionizing the way we deploy and maintain our infrastructures, but monitoring and troubleshooting in a containerized environment can still be painful and impractical. Understanding even basic resource usage is difficult - let alone tracking network connections or malicious activity. In his session at DevOps Summit, Gianluca Borello, Sr. Software Engineer at Sysdig, will cover the current state of the art for container monitoring and visibility, including pros / cons and li...
Containers are changing the security landscape for software development and deployment. As with any security solutions, security approaches that work for developers, operations personnel and security professionals is a requirement. In his session at @DevOpsSummit, Kevin Gilpin, CTO and Co-Founder of Conjur, will discuss various security considerations for container-based infrastructure and related DevOps workflows.
Manufacturing has widely adopted standardized and automated processes to create designs, build them, and maintain them through their life cycle. However, many modern manufacturing systems go beyond mechanized workflows to introduce empowered workers, flexible collaboration, and rapid iteration. Such behaviors also characterize open source software development and are at the heart of DevOps culture, processes, and tooling.
IT data is typically silo'd by the various tools in place. Unifying all the log, metric and event data in one analytics platform stops finger pointing and provides the end-to-end correlation. Logs, metrics and custom event data can be joined to tell the holistic story of your software and operations. For example, users can correlate code deploys to system performance to application error codes.
Any Ops team trying to support a company in today’s cloud-connected world knows that a new way of thinking is required – one just as dramatic than the shift from Ops to DevOps. The diversity of modern operations requires teams to focus their impact on breadth vs. depth. In his session at DevOps Summit, Adam Serediuk, Director of Operations at xMatters, Inc., will discuss the strategic requirements of evolving from Ops to DevOps, and why modern Operations has begun leveraging the “NoOps” approa...
Internet of Things (IoT) will be a hybrid ecosystem of diverse devices and sensors collaborating with operational and enterprise systems to create the next big application. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Bramh Gupta, founder and CEO of, and Fred Yatzeck, principal architect leading product development at, discussed how choosing the right middleware and integration strategy from the get-go will enable IoT solution developers to adapt and grow with the industry, while at th...
In their session at DevOps Summit, Asaf Yigal, co-founder and the VP of Product at, and Tomer Levy, co-founder and CEO of, will explore the entire process that they have undergone – through research, benchmarking, implementation, optimization, and customer success – in developing a processing engine that can handle petabytes of data. They will also discuss the requirements of such an engine in terms of scalability, resilience, security, and availability along with how the archi...
“All our customers are looking at the cloud ecosystem as an important part of their overall product strategy. Some see it evolve as a multi-cloud / hybrid cloud strategy, while others are embracing all forms of cloud offerings like PaaS, IaaS and SaaS in their solutions,” noted Suhas Joshi, Vice President – Technology, at Harbinger Group, in this exclusive Q&A with Cloud Expo Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff.
DevOps has often been described in terms of CAMS: Culture, Automation, Measuring, Sharing. While we’ve seen a lot of focus on the “A” and even on the “M”, there are very few examples of why the “C" is equally important in the DevOps equation. In her session at @DevOps Summit, Lori MacVittie, of F5 Networks, will explore HTTP/1 and HTTP/2 along with Microservices to illustrate why a collaborative culture between Dev, Ops, and the Network is critical to ensuring success.
Application availability is not just the measure of “being up”. Many apps can claim that status. Technically they are running and responding to requests, but at a rate which users would certainly interpret as being down. That’s because excessive load times can (and will be) interpreted as “not available.” That’s why it’s important to view ensuring application availability as requiring attention to all its composite parts: scalability, performance, and security.
Saviynt Inc. has announced the availability of the next release of Saviynt for AWS. The comprehensive security and compliance solution provides a Command-and-Control center to gain visibility into risks in AWS, enforce real-time protection of critical workloads as well as data and automate access life-cycle governance. The solution enables AWS customers to meet their compliance mandates such as ITAR, SOX, PCI, etc. by including an extensive risk and controls library to detect known threats and b...
Clearly the way forward is to move to cloud be it bare metal, VMs or containers. One aspect of the current public clouds that is slowing this cloud migration is cloud lock-in. Every cloud vendor is trying to make it very difficult to move out once a customer has chosen their cloud. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Naveen Nimmu, CEO of Clouber, Inc., will advocate that making the inter-cloud migration as simple as changing airlines would help the entire industry to quickly adopt the cloud wit...
Overgrown applications have given way to modular applications, driven by the need to break larger problems into smaller problems. Similarly large monolithic development processes have been forced to be broken into smaller agile development cycles. Looking at trends in software development, microservices architectures meet the same demands. Additional benefits of microservices architectures are compartmentalization and a limited impact of service failure versus a complete software malfunction....