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Neatness isn't everything in data center layout

Analysts explore data center layout, new trends in storage and converged infrastructure buying, and the implications of BYOD for network security.

In a recent post on Packet Pushers, blogger John Kerns explores the topic of data center layout. While a physical appearance of order or tidiness may make for good aesthetics, Kerns reminds network engineers that good physical data center layout is about much more than meets the eye.

Except for some power cables, it is best to use easily reusable Velcro, rather than zip ties, to manage cables. High-maintenance components should be placed in easily accessible areas, and Kerns adds that different media types should typically be separated. For instance, CAT5 cables should be placed away from, or even bundled separately from, twinax and fiber cables which tend to be less durable.

Read of more of Kerns' thoughts on data center design.

New approaches to buying servers, storage and converged infrastructure

Steve Duplessie, founder and senior analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group Inc. in Milford, Mass., delves into new approaches to buying servers, storage and converged infrastructure. While IT professionals once stocked up on additional "boxes," today those old metrics apply less and less. More often, present systems must address the need for speed, affordability, constant availability and universal accessibility.

To meet these requirements, Duplessie recommends that storage systems should be almost entirely cloud-based -- with the rest devoted to flash. He adds that the cloud is the foundation for most new approaches to these diverse enterprise needs, allowing affordability, extensive storage, easy access and substantial success in converged systems. Duplessie is keenly aware that orchestration and data awareness are critical to the survival and performance of these systems.

Explore more of Duplessie's thoughts on servers, storage and converged infrastructure.

What BYOD and the open enterprise mean for cybersecurity

Joel Stradling, an analyst with Current Analysis in Sterling, Va., looks back on 2015 as a year of corporate breaches, running the gamut from VW to Sony, and he sees a growing trend toward threat intelligence. However, new threats pose fresh challenges as large businesses pursue an "open enterprise" environment, with bring your own device (BYOD) policies.

According to Stradling, the best way for companies to protect themselves in the age of the open enterprise, is to adopt a multi-layered security policy, performing regular updates and comprehensively enforcing rules. He adds that service providers -- through WAN security -- are key to changing network security, and points out the increasing availability of "as a service" platforms such as those offered by Fortinet Inc., FireEye and Check Point Software Technologies.

Read more of Stradling's ideas about network security.

Next Steps

Managing network security in the age of BYOD

Converged infrastructure arrives

Guiding the data center design process

Dig Deeper on Data Center Network Infrastructure