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Networking blogs: PRISM and cloud data security; Dell debuts VRTX

In this blog roundup, read about the effects the PRISM scandal has on cloud data security and get a demo on troubleshooting managed switches.

Details on PRISM program cast shadow on cloud data security

For some, the news coming out of the National Security Administration PRISM scandal is not exactly surprising. As Julie Craig of Enterprise Management Associates writes, it wasn't necessary to read every clause of the Patriot Act to realize privacy has become somewhat of an outdated luxury. What is alarming, she says, is the extent to which the government has access to that most crucial of enterprise assets: company data. Since concerns about data security has consistently ranked among the top deterrents to businesses investigating the move to the cloud, the realities spotlighted in the PRISM leaks hardly bode well for encouraging cloud adoption.

Read why even cloud proponents like Craig are feeling concerned about data privacy in the wake of the NSA exposé.

Dell VRTX offers integration with simplification

Dell's freshly announced PowerEdge VRTX promises to fill a gap for small and medium-sized enterprises looking to streamline IT operations and management through integration. As ESG analyst Mark Bowker writes, the platform will help put a stop to the haphazardly assembled, overly complex deployments that can pose risks to a business. Remote office branches, departmental IT and businesses able to consolidate their applications on one platform are the main targets of the new offering. The lack of standardization in many IT environments makes the technology particularly relevant, as businesses look to simplify their operations with unobtrusive and affordable systems.

Check out Bowker's take on the VRTX at the ESG blogs.

Troubleshooting network access issues with managed switches

A port security snag at the nonprofit where network engineer Matthew Mengel works gave him the chance to run a demo on managed devices, which he shares in his latest Packet Pushers post. The problems cropped up when a PC that staff had moved between buildings stopped working. Instead of vacating the switch -- as a "dynamic" MAC address of a disconnected device would -- the "static" entry didn't time out, leaving the servers to assume the PC was still connected to the first port. Clearing the MAC address table or tossing the hub out altogether couldn't solve the problem, but Mengel shows how to use port security to clear the static entry.

Get Mengel's guide to handling managed switches and port security.

Network traffic planning is the next big WLAN challenge

The flood of traffic hitting enterprise WLANs means wireless network traffic planning is the next major concern for IT admins, Lisa Phifer says. The traffic loads from mobile devices grew 70% last year and became more distributed, with the top 1% of users generating 30% less of the total traffic than they did in 2010, according to Cisco research. Along with increasing cellular and Wi-Fi data consumption, cellular offload will put a strain on WLANs: Cisco predicts that 46% of traffic from smartphones and 71% from tablets will be offloaded in 2017.

See why Phifer emphasizes real capacity planning and routine performance evaluations to deal with booming WLAN traffic.

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