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Optimising the datacentre using open standards

Employing open standards is the key to unlocking the full potential of your datacentre infrastructure.

The exponential growth of enterprise data and corporate reliance on technology is placing enormous demands on the modern datacentre. Information must be transmitted rapidly, processed in real time, and stored securely. Service uptime and availability guarantees necessary for your business to compete in the global marketplace are increasing. While cloud computing solutions to these problems have steadily matured and adoption is now widespread, business leaders continue to demand greater efficiencies and ROIs from their IT investments. Intel believes that employing open standards is the key to unlocking the full potential of your datacentre infrastructure.

When designing scale-out architecture to support constantly expanding and shifting business requirements, open standards play a critical role in maintaining interoperability. Recognising this, a consortium of large companies, including BMW, Lockheed Martin, Shell, and JP Morgan Chase, formed the Open Data Center Alliance (ODCA) in 2010, which now boasts over 300 member organisations. Under technical guidance from Intel, ODCA aims to develop standards promoting interoperable cloud computing solutions and the adoption of industry best practices. ODCA hopes to simplify the selection of cloud services and datacentre solutions by creating a set of standard user-based models and reference designs. These usage models cover a broad range of topics, including infrastructure, security, commercial, carbon, compliance, management and services, data, and portability.

The leadership and innovation of industry associations developing open standards has created opportunities for all companies to optimise and streamline their datacentre operations. Migrating business applications and processes to standards-based cloud infrastructure saves money and improves performance by replacing expensive proprietary technology with cost-effective commodity hardware. Scaling cloud infrastructure to meet business needs is simpler when employing open standards. The growing number of vendors offering services conforming to prescribed standards provides a wider array of choices, allowing greater flexibility and agility. This is especially important when planning hybrid cloud solutions, since interoperability between a company's private cloud and vendor's public cloud is a key metric for success. Security is another important consideration where the adoption of open standards can reduce implementation complexity and ensure greater system reliability.

With such clear advantages, how can companies incorporate open standards into their IT strategies? Building your enterprise cloud with open technology such as OpenStack powered by commodity Intel-powered hardware provides a great foundation. Embracing software-defined infrastructure concepts for storage and networking will help create the building blocks necessary to deliver standards-based solutions. Intel's Infrastructure Builders program provides detailed reference architectures for building proven, interoperable cloud solutions, while the company's Cloud Finder portal helps businesses identify and evaluate cloud service providers supporting the open standard vision.

Many companies are already realising the benefits of adopting open standards in their datacentre and cloud deployments. With the support of technology leaders such as Intel, industry partners have committed to delivering interoperable solutions that provide flexibility and choice. Employing standards-based technology in your organisation will ensure that your cloud infrastructure is more scalable, secure, and efficient.

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