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CoreSite Sees the Data Center as the On-Ramp to the Cloud

Jarrett Appleby, COO for CoreSite, provided a different perspective than the usual view of the cloud at last month's RightScale Compute conference. CoreSite is in the data center business, and Appleby said that from there, you get to see IT trends from the inside out. (For more on recent IT trends, check out the RightScale State of the Cloud Report 2013, which includes data and analysis on cloud adoption by enterprises in a dozen industries.)

{C}{C}{C}Appleby cited several trends that are driving IT today. Big data topped his list, followed by a growth in IP traffic, which Appleby said will triple by 2018. "The network is like oxygen for the cloud," he said, and the need to provide low latency for mobile devices at the end of the network has an impact on workloads.


Watch the video of Jarrett Appleby's session at RightScale Compute

Organizations, Appleby suggested, need to consider an efficient approach that includes bringing high-performance applications close to users, and taking non-performance-critical applications to "the hinterlands, where power's cheap and costs are down."

In today's interconnected world you can choose where to host your applications. At the edge, close to users, Appleby said you should put the deployments that require minimal latency, using highly distributed network nodes placed globally. The rest of the data center architecture becomes multi-layer, with compute farms located where power is cheap, and aggregation nodes somewhere in the middle.

Application delivery network providers such as Riverbed and Akamai that deliver optimized IP VPNs to the edge of the network are key drivers for onramps to the cloud, Appleby said. Instead of bringing the last mile of the network to an organization's site, the new model becomes one of using the data center campus as a hub for applications that need to provide sub-millisecond responses.

Merging the cloud with data center infrastructure is where things are evolving, Appleby said. Data center campuses are becoming hubs for legacy networks and data centers, offering 10G inter-campus cross-connects, where anyone coming into the campus can connect directly to anyone else that's there. Appleby said old-style colocation data centers have transformed into the center of a mesh where all kinds of connectivity happens. Organizations will use their private networks as on-ramps to these campuses, and the campuses will be the foundation for software-defined networks.

CoreSiteCoreSite launched an initiative called Open Cloud Exchange to give organizations a choice of cloud service providers at the network, infrastructure, service management, and onboarding layers, focusing on high-performance hybrid and multi-clouds. As the carriers boost their core capacity from 10G to 100G, they will install their equipment in data center campuses first. Open Cloud Exchange facilitates direct connection to data centers from organizations' Ethernet. Appleby advocated leveraging the performance and security of private clouds with the scalability of data center campuses to optimize total cost of ownership.

In choosing a set of providers, Appleby advocated that organizations consider capacity, connectivity, community, and customer experience. He said they should use a multi-tenant data center that can provide secure private networking as a way to enhance the enablement of hybrid clouds. You can find out more about implementing a successful hybrid cloud strategy in the RightScale Hybrid Cloud White Paper.

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