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Enterprises Slowed by Aging Data Centers

July 19, 2013 No Comments

A recent survey has found that data centers, often relying on technology more than 20 years old, are unable to keep up with the new guard of cloud computing, virtualization and mobility.

Virtualization and cloud computing are pushing data center operators to think beyond their traditional network set up, according to a report released by Brocade.

The network vendor, based on the results of its survey, said it believes a majority of the industry is yet to take up new networking technologies to plan for this demand.

It said 91 percent of respondents believe their current IT infrastructure requires upgrades to meet new networking requirements and one-third said they are already experiencing multiple network failures a week as a result of growing amounts of data.

The results come as no surprise. Compuware released a study showing that 64 percent of CIOs claim their largest management concern regarding the cloud is ensuring end users receive a good quality of service – and much of this is reliant on the delivery of services over the network.

Of the Compuware respondents, 64 percent said they suffered poor end-user experience due to performance bottlenecks and 44 percent said they had lost revenue as a result of poor availability of cloud services.

A majority – 83 percent – of CIOs said they are already using cloud-based solutions or plan to in the next 12 months.

Brocade vice president of data center switching and routing Jason Nolet said in some cases, data center operators are trying to deliver these services using 20-year-old technology.

“This simple fact is they can no longer keep up with demand,” Nolet said.

“Virtualization and cloud models require greater network agility and performance as well as reduced operational cost and complexity.”

Even though most organizations continue to update their data center infrastructure, many are running on outdated resources, making them incapable of keeping up with the demands for a more virtualized, mobile and cloud-based world, according to an article on

A growing number of organizations are deploying fabric-based networks—which offer greater flexibility, scalability and automation—and are looking to begin rolling out software-defined network (SDN) technology by 2015, said the survey,  according to an article on

The gist of the survey is one of data center administrators who are trying to keep their aging infrastructures running while they look to bring in newer technologies they know will help them keep up with the rapidly changing demands on their networks.

Brocade’s Nolet said many companies are looking further ahead and plan to start implementing software-defined networks by 2015 to improve their own service delivery and real time response.

The Brocade report shows that on average, enterprises will look to upgrade their data center network every two to three years.

Brocade’s survey—conducted by research firm Vanson Bourne, which surveyed 1,750 IT decision makers and office workers in Europe and North America—indicates that while organizations may buy SDN technology over the next few years, they’re still going to have to deal with an increasingly aged infrastructure.

Patrick Burke

Patrick Burke is a writer and editor based in the greater New York area and occasionally blogs for Rackspace Hosting

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