December 09, 2013

Orchestrated offline VM Patching using Service Management Automation
So the goal is to ensure images stored in the Virtual Machine Manager library are updated as soon as Microsoft Security Updates become available on Patch Tuesday. In this post I’ll present you a way to achieve that goal, while leveraging the entire CLOUD OS stack including Windows Server 2012 R2, System Center 2012 R2 and Windows Azure Pack. The solution itself is provided by a SMA (Service Management Automation) Runbook. If you have not looked into SMA I highly recommend you to do so.

Surfing a digital wave, or drowning?
One reason for worry is that IT bosses are conservative by habit and with good reason. Above all they must keep essential systems running—and safe. Those systems are under continual attack. If they are breached, the head of IT carries the can. More broadly, IT departments like to know who is up to what. Many of them gave up one battle long ago, by letting staff choose their own smartphones (a trend known as “bring your own device”). When the chief executive insists on an iPhone rather than a fogeyish BlackBerry, it is hard to refuse.

Don’t be held hostage by the IT expert
“We changed our IT culture significantly to one of service, and we realigned departments within our organization several years ago,” said one financial services CIO. “The process was necessary, but in reorganizing, I also knew that I was risking losing key technical contributors who didn’t want to be part of a cross-disciplinary service culture, but who instead preferred to operate in their traditional technical expertise silos.”

Microsoft Exec Hints at Separate Windows Release Trains for Consumers, Business
At a technology symposium hosted by financial services giant Credit Suisse, Tony Myerson acknowledged the operating system adoption chasm between consumers and more conservative corporations. Myerson, who formerly led the Windows Phone team, was promoted in July to head all client-based OS development, including that for smartphones, tablets, PCs and the Xbox game console.

Core wars redux: Intel to ship 15-core Ivytown chip
Intel confirmed Thursday that it will release a 15-core server chip code-named Ivytown, which will be based on the Ivy Bridge architecture. Intel until now had topped off at 12 cores with the Xeon E5 v2 chips that shipped in the third quarter of this year. The 15-core chip is destined for high-end servers. It will likely go into four- to eight-socket servers, which typically handle high-end computing for databases and enterprise resource planning systems.

The Status of Finance and Cloud
After several years of first inhibiting and prohibiting Cloud use, then a brief period of Cloud uncertainty, Finance leaders overall, and Finance as a corporate entity, have embraced Cloud as a means of enabling, increasing, and delivering the value required of Finance by enterprises in an increasingly-fast-changing business environment. As a result, Cloud has become the first choice of Finance leaders and buyers for Finance management solutions – and is increasingly encouraged by Finance leadership and policy as a first choice for broader enterprise business IT.

6 Storage & Management Predictions for 2014
IDC forecasts that the volume of digital data will grow 40 - 50 percent per year clearly indicating that Information Storage and Management will remain in vogue and a big focus area for CIOs across sectors. With new buzzwords emerging such as Software Defined Datacenters, integrated backup appliances etc. we believe that 2014, will continue to see these new trends gaining momentum. As cloud based storage, backup and disaster recovery become commonplace, managing and protecting data will also be a focus area for enterprises and SMBs.

US tech companies ask governments to reform surveillance practices
The latest move appears to be one of a number by the Internet companies to highlight that they are on the side of the user, and to bring pressure on governments, particularly of the U.S. Facebook, AOL, Apple, Google, Microsoft and Yahoo wrote in October to the chairman and members of a U.S. Committee on the Judiciary, demanding that the surveillance practices of the U.S. should be reformed to enhance privacy protections and provide "appropriate oversight and accountability mechanisms."

Enterprise software 2014: Three themes to ponder
There are very few greenfield opportunities in Enterprise Software any more. While there are a number of vibrant, high-growth SaaS companies, the vast majority of them are selling replacement products. We believe there is an enormous secular growth opportunity in automating processes at the very low end of the market. The Cloud has ushered in a new era of software where, for less than $50 a month in most instances, the smallest of small businesses can get enterprise-class software to automate core functions like Finance and Sales & Marketing.

DARPA makes games of finding software vulnerabilities
The games are designed in such a way that when users solve puzzles in order to advance to the next level of game play, they are actually generating program annotations and mathematical proofs that can identify or prove the absence of flaws in software written in either C or Java. DARPA funded the games and the portal through its Crowd Sourced Formal Verification (CSFV) program. Formal software verification typically relies on engineers reviewing code for possible errors and omissions that could be used by an attacker to compromise a system.

Quote for the day:

"Singleness of purpose is one of the chief essentials for success in life, no matter what may be one's aim." -- John D. Rockefeller

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