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Analysis / Cloud

Has The Buzz Finally Died Down On Cloud?

There was a time when you couldn’t read any IT news story or visit any tech event without someone mentioning the cloud. It was, at one time, hailed as a cure-all for any IT worries from cost concerns to the rapid scalability required by start-ups. Part of the reason we hear the buzzword less now is that it’s settled in to IT infrastructure – most companies use SaaS solutions such as Salesforce or Cisco WebEx and wouldn’t be keen to return to the old process of software being loaded from discs and updated laboriously one machine at a time. Is it time for us all to throw out our hardware and software and accept that cloud has gone from the new kid on the block to the standard?

Dropbox Takes Back Its Infrastructure

There was an interesting story last year about how Dropbox had decided to take back its infrastructure and build its own data centres. AWS had previously provided the cloud at the centre of their virtual architecture and Dropbox clearly wanted more control. With the new data protection rules coming into force and the current concern over data usage and sharing on social sites, companies are becoming aware of the importance of managing their data rather than farming it out to third parties. What interested me was not so much that it took this decision, which seemed inevitable, but that it didn’t cost anything like as much as you might imagine if you add up some of the promised cost-savings the cloud was meant to deliver.

Cheap & Scalable Hardware Is An Option

Obviously, not every company is going to need to build and maintain their own data centres across the globe like Dropbox. However, given the scale of their requirement, it’s interesting to read how the complex operation was delivered by a small, expert and agile team. When cloud arrived on the scene, one of the key promises was that it would take away the cost and complexity of managing hardware – but the latest iterations of servers and data storage can be effective investments with user-friendly UIs that won’t require a team of experts. The market has changed and so has the perspective; there is a lot more focus put onto taking control of your company’s data whether for security, legislative compliance or to improve your responsiveness and customer service.

Colocation Is The Best Of Both Worlds

If you’re looking at your infrastructure, don’t assume that cloud solutions will be the cheapest option. This is particularly important at the moment; given the demands of the GDPR and any SLAs you may have which mean you can’t afford any downtime. You don’t need a huge team to look after your data, or a room filled with the right cooling equipment and monitoring solutions. You can situate your servers in our purpose-built data centre and your IT team can monitor and manage the whole thing remotely. If anything needs closer attention, our secure data centre has 247 access and if you grow faster than you expected, we can offer more space for as much hardware as you need. At one time the cloud was the promised saviour of IT and the benefits outweighed the cost and any inconvenience. Now it seems that with changes in the market and outside legislative pressure, businesses have reached the time to take the best elements of the cloud, but put themselves back in the driving seat.

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Gary Coates is the manager of Green Co, a low-carbon, ISO27001-certified data centre with high efficiency systems to deliver a range of services including colocation, connectivity and disaster recovery to businesses across the South East.