[ad] The service leader for Cloud is now in Australia. Secure, reliable cloud and managed hosting all backed by 24x7x365 Fanatical Support. Create your free account now.
Buy an Seagate Business Storage NAS for your chance to win a holiday
[ad] Purchase a selected Seagate Business Storage NAS to receive a $20 cash-back AND go into the draw to win a $1,000 Flight Centre voucher so you can holiday in the destination of your choice. T&Cs apply.
How mobile and social media affect your Customer Experience strategy
[ad] How will the adoption of mobile devices and social media affect your Customer Experience strategy? Are you reaching your organisation's customers through these touch points? Click here to download a whitepaper by Fifth Quadrant examining consumer and business attitudes to these new contact channels.
Great articles on other sites
- Canberra blitzes states with NBN take-up rates
- War on whistleblowers from Abbott, Turnbull as ICJ case arrives
- Stockland tech revamp at centre of growth plans
- Clare warns of Gonski-like backflips on the NBN
- Victoria seeks early buy-in to avoid past disasters
- Vtalk bucks the China trend with plan for Aussie build
- Booksellers bristle at Amazon's arrival
- Australian customers upbeat on Dell going private
- FTTP NBN supporters lobby Turnbull
- Telstra staff to return to NBN pits after asbestos scare
50 things top IT pros need to know
[ad] This 18 page TechRepublic whitepaper explores 10 things you should know to become an epic IT manager, 40 other essential tips to advance your IT career and practical guidance for starting an IT consulting business. Click here to access the whitepaper.
The new IT manager: Trends affecting IT in business
[ad] The tables have turned for IT managers. IT used to be able to dictate which computing assets would be used by employees and how they would be used. No longer. This free GigaOM Pro research paper (click here to download it) gives a solid, fact-based perspective on how IT consumerisation, mobile computing and cloud delivery trends are changing the paradigm.
Enterprise IT, News - Written by Renai LeMay on Tuesday, July 30, 2013 17:09 - 1 Comment
Cloud central to Oxfam IT overhaul
news The Australian division of relief and development organisation Oxfam has revealed plans to conduct a substantial fundamental IT infrastructure refresh project which will see a number of traditional in-house IT services replaced with new cloud computing technologies.
The news arrived this week courtesy of a media release issued by local firm Thomas Dureya Consulting, which has landed much of the work involved in the migration. The project is slated to kick off in mid-October this year and will involve a refresh of two datacentres, which had last seen hardware, software and services overhauls back in 2008. The technology and infrastructure involved in the current setup was approaching end of life or end of lease in June this year.
The first datacentre will have its infrastructure refreshed (including its virtualisation environment), with disaster recovery functionality being shifted into the cloud. The second datacentre will be decommissioned and public-facing servers migrated to the cloud.
In its statement, Thomas Duryea said it secured 70 percent of the total project’s scope of work, through a hybrid cloud solution to refresh production infrastructure and connect to the firm’s own cloud services for disaster recovery and backup, as part of what it described as a “strategic stepping stone” ahead of a move to fully hosted environment in four years time.
As part of the data centre refresh Thomas Duryea upgraded Oxfam’s storage infrastructure to EMC VNX5300 with three nines availability – twice the storage capacity of the existing solution – as well as replacing IBM servers for Cisco UCS servers. Oxfam’s virtualised environment was also upgraded to VMware VSphere 5.1, delivering “considerable management, performance and efficiency gains through centralised management of all virtual machines”.
Thomas Duryea also extended its Managed Services agreement which the firm already already had in place with Oxfam, supporting the agency with an enterprise service desk facility for the primary site core infrastructure.
As part of Oxfam’s aim to begin transitioning to a hybrid cloud solution, Thomas Duryea said it would replace Oxfam’s existing on-site tape library with its back-up-as-a-service solution, replace a traditional on-premise disaster recovery model with TD’s DR-as-a-service solution as well as providing an infrastructure-as-a-service offering to support test and development scenarios.
Oxfam Australia technical infrastructure manager Grant Holton-Picard said Oxfam Australia reviewed the project’s cost scope across the previous four years. “Through the project, we aim to reduce the total cost of ownership of systems across the next four years compared to the associated systems and services of the previous four,” he said in TD’s statement. “Further to this, we aim to reduce the complexity of the environment to enable ease of management within the existing Oxfam Technology Services team.”
“Based on the full tri-partner approach including Thomas Duryea Consulting’s awarded share, we expect a 20 percent saving in costs, over the next four years. This is a great result, as it means we will be able to put more back into our fight against global poverty,” he said.
Holton-Picard praised the IT services firm, noting it had had a track record of delivering services to Oxfam. “Thomas Duryea has been delivering managed services to Oxfam Australia for the last four years,” he said. “During this time, Thomas Duryea Consulting’s appointed team fostered a fantastic work partnership with Oxfam Australia’s Technology Services team.”
“Key to our decision in awarding Thomas Duryea the majority scope of work was really our satisfaction and trust in their technical expertise and experience to be able to deliver a successful project,” he said.
Setting aside all the PR guff here involving Thomas Duryea (no doubt Oxfam was able to get a substantial discount on the firm’s services courtesy of its charity status and its willingness to say kind words about TD in media releases), there’s some very interesting aspects to this overhaul.
For starters, we’re seeing what I consider to be a very important and likely growing trend within IT departments: The continual migration of non-production services to the cloud. In this case, we’re seeing Oxfam’s on-side tape library canned and its functionality migrated into the cloud. And we’re also seeing its disaster recovery functionality shifted into the cloud. And, as is normal these days, we’re also seeing Oxfam test and development functions shifted into the cloud.
If you consider the way many large or even medium-sized organisations run their IT infrastructure, it’s common to have two datacentres; a production facility where most resources are invested, and a secondary, less capable facility which hosts core DR functionality to get things working in the event that the first datacentre fails, as well as functions such as off-site backup.
In Oxfam’s case, Thomas Duryea has been able to successfully convince the organisation to simply get rid of its second datacentre entirely, entrusting the functions previously held there to TD’s own cloud computing infrastructure (likely based on top of a local datacentre operated by a major player such as Telstra) instead.
This is a very significant move. It’s been normal for quite some time now for large organisations to run test and dev from the cloud, and we’ve also seen unified communications infrastructure increasingly move that way. But now the adoption of cloud computing technologies is encroaching into other areas of the business as well, as enterprise IT analysts have long predicted would happen. As organisations gain confidence with the cloud, and standardise their infrastructure around it, they get comfortable shifting more and more services that way.
How long will it be before Oxfam moves everything into the cloud? Well, if you believe TD’s media release, four years. But I would bet that things will increasingly shift that way sooner.
And this is a great thing. Organisations such as Oxfam really have no business running their own IT infrastructure; this is very far indeed from being their core competency. The more such infrastructure can be outsourced and managed by other people, in an affordable manner, the more Oxfam can focus on its own core competency — fundraising and development work. In such organisations, which have very little competitive differentiation when it comes to technology, the natural role of the CIO will increasingly be to act as a ‘broker’ of IT services, and a project manager or advisor to internal projects involving technology — but not as an IT service provider themselves. I suspect we’ll see more and more of what TD is doing with Oxfam in future.
Latest Delimiter 2.0 articles (subscriber content)
|Politicians from Australia’s major parties need to stop issuing ludicrous blanket pardons for the intelligence community’s ongoing misdemeanours and start applying a basic modicum of transparency and accountability to this important national security function.|
|The independent pro-fibre National Broadband Network movement is doing a far better job of promoting Labor’s Fibre to the Premises-based NBN policy than Labor itself. When is Labor going to wake from its slumber and start supporting this scrappy but energetic grassroots network of activists?|
|Ziggy Switkowski's first substantial public appearance since being appointed NBN Co chief executive has starkly demonstrated just how different he is from his predecessor, Mike Quigley, and just how strictly he will adhere to the guidelines which his patron, Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull, has set for him.|
|Australian technology companies have been virtually absent from the the nation’s public stockmarket over the past decade as the stigma of the dot com bust took its toll on investor confidence. But a clutch of new listings planned for the closing months of 2013 shows renewed interest in the sector and that local entrepreneurs are smelling money in the air once again.|
|NBN Co’s Strategic Review process gives the company an unmissable opportunity to re-evaluate the early decision to deploy its FTTP network primarily through Telstra’s underground ducts. The company and its new Coalition masters must now seriously consider deploying more fibre aerially on power poles in an effort to speed up its rollout substantially.|
|That moment which many Australian technologists fervently hoped for but never expected to see has come to pass: Simon Hackett has been appointed to the board of the National Broadband Network Company. But what questions should the Internode founder be asking NBN Co’s executive management team? Here’s five ideas to start with.|
|The rapid replacement of respected NBN Co chief operating officer Ralph Steffens with a Telstra executive who appears less experienced with fibre rollouts but better politically connected represents a key signal that NBN Co’s senior executive hiring process has now become completely politicised and is no longer independent from the Federal Government.|
Enterprise IT, Featured, News - Dec 5, 2013 13:41 - 0 Comments
More In Enterprise IT
- Qld launches whole of government IaaS panel
- Defence finally allows staff iPhones, iPads
- NSW Govt refreshes ICT Advisory Panel
- Coles is yet another complex cloud case study
- CenITex has no disaster recovery capacity
Featured, News, Telecommunications - Dec 4, 2013 15:18 - 44 Comments
More In Telecommunications
- Defying the Senate: Turnbull to release NBN Review by end of 2013
- Senate to force Turnbull to publish NBN Review
- Get on with FTTN job, Quigley tells NBN Co
- Senate circus shows politics has no place in NBN
- Foxtel to launch broadband by late 2014
More In Industry
- Xbox One goes off with a bang … but will the PS4 launch eclipse it?
- It’s not just Freelancer: Aussie tech IPOs are back in general
- Freelancer’s IPO: A billion reasons to care
- Australian retailers online: Late to the party and much to do
- DesignCrowd picks up another $3m
Digital Rights, News - Dec 5, 2013 14:08 - 14 Comments
More In Digital Rights
- Global privacy group files formal ASD complaint
- Labor open to surveillance discussion
- Snowden an “American traitor”, says Australia’s Attorney-General
- ASD goes rogue with Aussie metadata
- It’s live: Delimiter publishes AGD FoI mirror