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  1. #1
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    BEST PRACTICES

    Forecast for cloud-based servers is hazy


    By Susan Bradley

    Home-office and small-business users once had few network server options, but now we're awash in offerings.

    With a bewildering number of choices such as data centers, storage in the cloud, and new local-server hardware, deciding what is right for your business is harder than ever.

    The full text of this column is posted at WindowsSecrets.com/2010/08/05/07 (paid content, opens in a new window/tab).

    Columnists typically cannot reply to comments here, but do incorporate the best tips into future columns.
    Last edited by revia; 2011-01-19 at 15:47.

  2. #2
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    Thanks for publishing this article, Susan. It's about time to start clearing up for small businesses what the cloud is all about.

    I think I have to disagree with you, though, about open source cloud offerings. Cloud integration has been built right into Ubuntu server since at least 9.04 and uses Eucalyptus:

    https://help.ubuntu.com/10.04/serverguide/C/uec.html

    For businesses with a larger virtual environment, OpenNebula looks to be great for dynamically maintaining a private, hybrid or public cloud infrastructure:

    https://help.ubuntu.com/10.04/server...pennebula.html

    Easy to set up? Perhaps, perhaps not. Useful to SMBs? Not yet, unless you're of a size to have a staff sysadmin or if you have special needs, but the rules are changing fast. As a sysadmin, it's easy to see that OpenNebula could be used in conjunction with local servers to get the best of both worlds, but for the average business owner, it would be a hair-raising experience to set up.

    One exciting area for small businesses in the near future is IaaS. I think companies like ElasticHosts (www.elastichosts.com) are going to be game-changers. Rent PaYG infrastructure economically - how cool is that!

    Lastly, I'm not clear (ha) why ClearOS was mentioned in this article. ClearOS is similar to SME Server and others, open source distros that enables LDAP authentication, file serving, email and security. I use ClearOS as a virtual machine as the "router" to my virtualized testlab domain, and couldn't be happier. Small, responsive, secure - perfect. But nothing to do with cloud computing.

  3. #3
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    Why would anyone trust "cloud" data storage for personal, much less business data storage? Oh, I know I'm old fashioned and out of date, but I all I have to do is point you to Quicken's pending shutdown.

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