Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

Summary: Novell extends cloud management capabilities to your iPhone

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Management, monitoring, and reporting seem to take up a large part of the daily activities of the datacenter IT staff, so the ability to use a mobile device to fill some of the information needs of the IT would be one of those things differentiates a product from a growing field of contenders. With their latest version of their private cloud management solution, Novell goes so far as to add your iPhone as a management tool.

The Novell Cloud Manager is designed to give the user flexibility in managing and administering both new and existing virtual hosts and their client operating systems. Unlike most tools of this nature, Novell claims that the system is designed not just for the use of IT, but also for all business stakeholders who utilize the virtualized infrastructure.

Detailed control over the views and actions that any given user of the tool can see makes the distribution of the tool outside of normal IT channels practical. Allowing business stakeholders to monitor their pieces of the cloud computing infrastructure can give them a better feel for how resources are used and what IT is doing to improve their business lives.

Making a native iPhone application available will actually encourage the non-IT business users to keep themselves informed as to the status of the back-end of their business applications and eventually reduce the amount of time that It needs to spend explaining the impact of their infrastructure work on the business front end.

From the IT perspective, a native iPhone application that provides real-time console information is much more valuable than simple text or email alerting that IT has grown accustomed to. Many IT pros currently use a remote console application to permit them to do some management and mobnitoring from their smartphones; a dedicated application that more simply performs the same functionality is definitely worth a look.

Topics: Open Source, CXO, Data Centers, iPhone, Mobility, Software

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13 comments
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  • RE: Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

    Not my data center. I refuse to allow this insecure device to have access to any of my network.
    travis.duffy@...
    • You may want to read the following link...

      @travis.duffy@...
      http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1288

      You make yourself sounds as though you do not work in a data center. If you are you may want to upgrade your reading.
      BubbaJones_
      • RE: Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

        @RicD_

        and since unlocking a locked iPhone is apparently child's play, perhaps you should stay up to date with security requirements ;-)
        tonymcs@...
      • RE: Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

        tonymcs@...<br>When someone shows how to unlock anything then posting it all over the web, unlocking anything becomes child's play.<br><br>My question to you is if it is child's play how long did it take you all by yourself without input from anyone or anything to come up with the unlocking? Oh, now you will say you do not have an iPhone on which to try it.<br><br>Combination locks for safes, doors, bicycles, and the like, can be unlocked without a code when one knows how. When someone shows you how easy it is to do that then it is a, "wow that is child's play".<br><br>Kudos to the person that found that unlocking trick. Apple will fix it. I feel the same way about software security flaws, they are found then the vendors fix them. I do not look down on vendor products, they are dancing as fast as they can. When folks spend their time looking for flaws they will find them. It does not matter how diligent the vendors work not to have flaws they will be found.
        BubbaJones_
      • RE: Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

        @RicD_
        Maybe you should upgrade your reading on mobile device security. http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2009/07/iphone-encryption/ The article is on the 3gs but the iphone 4 is no better.

        So it has built in vpn access. If you are such a smart data center employee, you would know that security beyond VPN's on mobile devices is a big requirement. The iphone's weak device encryption does not meet our standards therefore they will not be allowed to access our network until Apple gets serious about device security. You can crack the encryption on an iphone in under 5 minutes.
        travis.duffy@...
      • RE: Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

        Hello travis.duffy@...
        Thank you for that article. Quite interesting.

        Notice: Jonathan Zdziarski, an iPhone developer and a hacker who teaches forensics courses on recovering data from iPhones.

        How long for folks not in that field, you and I, to come up with that find? It is certain he did not say "okay today I will spend only five minutes to find flaws, exploits, workarounds for iPhone security". Once time was spent, could be days through months, and flaw is found then presented to everyone it is easy to say "You can crack the encryption on an iphone in under 5 minutes". Du'h.

        As with all devices, OS and, software regardless how secure it is someone with enough time, patience and, knowledge will overcome it. On their own 99.999% of users would never find it.

        Could the security be better on any phone, PC, etc., heck yes. It is my hope security will become better for all of us. Thus hackers are doing a service as they find flaws then notify the vendor. We then expect the vendor fixes those issues. It is a never-ending cycle. Not one OS or phone is secure. It is only a matter of time that someone will find a way to overcome that which we think is secure.

        Again, thank you for that article.
        BubbaJones_
  • So...

    Which insecure device would you allow access to your network/datacenter?
    zkiwi
    • RE: Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

      @zkiwi
      Blackberry because it is not an insecure device.
      travis.duffy@...
  • Did the concept of ...

    an IPSEC enable phone just fly over your head? Or is it IPSEC you don't get? Which is it?
    Alan Henry
    • RE: Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

      @Alan Henry

      Precisely, however the challenge is around creation of keying material, supporting secur auth moethods and credentials (kerb and certs) and encryption support which can eat up processor cycles on these wimpy cell phone procs.

      Pat
      omdguy
  • RE: Should you manage your Datacenter on your iPhone?

    Trust Novell? Aren't they the people that just drove their business into the ground?

    Seriously though, everyone is using company controlled BBs today to do the same thing. Extending this concept to the iPhone and the Android would be a natural thing. Really management through web pages and console applications is becoming the norm. Anyone who isn't clearly doesn't have to worry about large scale problems with limited support staff, in other worlds, they're not in the real world.

    In all seriousness, I wouldn't use Novell anything right now as who knows what really will happen to their business. There is a reason their in such a dire state, in general their software quality slipped in a HUGE way.
    sys_engineer
  • I think it would make a great iPhone app ...

    Imagine an iPhone app with two knobs and two readouts: a knob for speed, a knob for capacity, a traffic-light readout for user experience and a $cost/per/month odometer. Then the CIO could check the user experience, adjust either the speed or capacity and see the resulting monthly cost on the app! Everything else would all be done by magic monkeys in the background!

    I ought to patent this ...
    terry flores
  • A better question than should you is...

    ...would you want to. On that tiny little screen. Well, never in a million years if my laptop is available.

    "business stakeholders to monitor their pieces of the cloud computing infrastructure can give them a better feel for how resources are used"

    Really!?!?! Seriously!?!?! You really want that?
    cornpie