blog It’s a common phenomenon within Australian government departments and other large organisations such as banks to have a legacy of back-room ‘datacentres’ (and I use the term very loosely) scattered around the nation and internationally. You know the sort of thing I’m talking about; closets in the back of the office with a file and print server; a few old SPARC machines in the basement of a small office block; and even the odd machine under a desk or two. The NSW Government has recently ‘fessed up to the problem, and even major banks such as NAB have admitted recently that the phenomenon is active within its operations. But a new revelation by the Department of Defence this week, as it gets ready to changeover its massive centralised processing contract, shows that some departments just have more legacy than others. ZDNet reports (we recommend you click here for the full article):
“As part of the department’s AU$1.9 billion IT reform, it is moving to consolidate its data-processing facilities from over 200 datacentres across Australia to fewer than 10 locally and three globally … Through centralisation of data processing, [Defence CIO Peter Lawrence] said that the Department of Defence will have better data security through only having to secure eight locations rather than 280”
Now, I have to say that we put a lot of stock in the previous Department of Defence chief information officer Greg Farr, and his ability to reform the department’s IT operations. There’s no doubt that Farr was able to drastically reduce the number of front-line IT problems which Defence has been suffering over the years. However, we have to say that this appears to be one area which Farr unfortunately left alone. 280 server locations around Australia? In an era where centralised computing is more and more the norm and where Defence spends big dollars on quality telecommunications? And in the era of great cloud computing solutions? That’s just incredible. Here’s hoping that Defence spends a lot of time rationalising this situation over the next few years.