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Managing Network Services in the Cloud
 

Managing Network Services in the Cloud

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  • This diagram depicts the key elements from a management standpoint that are required for IT-as-a-Service, regardless of the business applications and IT services delivered – whether it’s for a dev and test environment for your SAP applications team or a production environment for Oracle database hosting. This framework is similar to the architecture for private cloud recommended by analysts firms like Gartner and Forrester. We’re not trying to replicate all of the existing IT management systems (like your existing service desk / ticketing systems and CMDB) that you use to run your legacy data center environments. Instead, this diagram represents the new capabilities necessary for IT-as-a-Service; the mandatory requirements for this new approach include a self-service portal and orchestration, together with policy-based infrastructure resource management.At the top level of the diagram you have the self-service portal, with on-demand provisioning from a catalog of standardized IT options, governance and approvals, as well as tracking the lifecycle of service usage to prevent sprawl and to enable chargeback or showback. This portal can provide users with a unified online “menu” of options for requesting IT services, whether the infrastructure resources are hosted in your own data centers or potentially sourced externally in a hybrid cloud model.From an automation and integration standpoint, you need to combine the portal with an orchestration engine that can provision the requested service and the underlying infrastructure – with policy-based infrastructure resource management and controls across a shared pool of compute, storage, and network resources, whether physical or virtual.And finally, although IT-as-a-Service demands a new approach, it must complement your legacy systems and management tools. So this new management approach needs to integrate with the existing IT environment for operational processes including monitoring and service assurance, configuration management and a CMDB, as well as business processes like user management in your directory systems and financial management - whether you start with a showback model or evolve to pay-per-use billing and chargeback.